Resilience lessons from surfing

Surfing must be one of the most exciting, challenging, frustrating, but yet exhilarating sports. It is never the same. A sport with many variables, some that you can control and some that are outside your control.

As we find ourselves in the current situation where we have to navigate a rapidly changing economic environment, there are a surprising number of lessons businesses can learn from surfing. Here is our top 9.

  1. Get the right tools for the job…If you have ever tried to surf in the Atlantic, even on a sunny day, you know that a good wetsuit is essential. Make sure you, and your team, are well equipped from the beginning and have the right tools and technology to carry on in any situation.
  2. Sit back onshore and watch what’s happening…You definitely cannot influence nature, the waves and the weather. There will always be circumstances out of your control. If the surf’s not up or it’s just not happening, sit back and pick a better time.
  3. Time your effort…With the wide variety of waves coming through, it is easy to miss a good opportunity or put a lot of effort into the wrong wave with little reward. Always be at the ready and put all your energy into the right scenario.
  4. Paddle hard… Work hard to catch the wave. When the opportunity arises, you have to put the effort in to get the right result.
  5. Catch that wave… Get up on your feet quickly and maintain the momentum as you ride across that perfect wave.
  6. Enjoy the moments of calm… Between sets of waves, there is nothing better than clearing your mind of the day to day distractions and as you ready yourself for fresh waves, you will view the situation with a different perspective.
  7. Don’t give up. …Surfing has to be one of the most frustrating sports. Every time you think you have mastered it, something changes, high swell, low tide, wind, rain, other surfers. You name it. Just keep watching, keep learning, and keep at it.
  8. Hang loose…Extending the thumb and pinky finger is a Hawaiian sign to convey the concept of friendship, understanding, compassion, and solidarity. Good idea really!
  9. The perfect wave…. It’s different for everyone. The moment you know you caught it and nailed it. A little bit smug? I think so. Make sure you celebrate success.

If you need help with developing resilience in your business, please contact and we will set up a free consultation with a member of our team.

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