Apparently there is now a psychometric test to measure 'tough-mindedness' or resilience (a term which my informant prefers, and I agree with her). Although long known in sports coaching, it is a concept which has, I am told, recently entered general employment in, er, employment.
It is the ability to keep going when things get hard, to ignore those difficulties and focus on the desired outcome, and achieve it in the face of those difficulties. It is, also, the ability to recover from what might otherwise be a disaster.
We are familiar with this concept in bellringing, only as bellringers we don't bother with the amped up language and call it 'keeping your bell ringing'. As in, 'when can you stop ringing? You can stop ringing when you are dead, and even then try to keep moving long enough so we can finish around you.' A little extreme? Perhaps, but 'not quitting' is built into the normal experience of ringing.
Shortly after discussing this, we had a magnificent demonstration of resilience. Simon and I were tempted down Penrith-ways again and managed to squeeze in a quarter peal of Yorkshire. This, due to various circumstances (mostly involving a large cheese plate), didn't get started until about 9pm. So tiredness was already a factor.
We started off fantastic, and then some trips started, and the recovery from each trip was a bit slower and then there was a bit of a serious method mistake, and Sally, who was working a little beyond her confidence zone, lost her way and reached that place where you hear the words but can't actually process them in any way.
All was not lost! Sally kept ringing, the rest of us closed everything else out and concentrated on not going wrong, and after a little time, Sally remembered that she actually knew the method pretty well, and finished the quarter with some good ringing.
Don't give up, keep ringing, and and you may find yourself leaving the panic behind. Plus, it turns out to be a transferable skill. Handbells as a team-building exercise?Penrith, Cumbria
17 Wordsworth St
Saturday 16 June 2012 in 45 mins (15 in C)
1344 Yorkshire Surprise Major
1-2 Tina Stoecklin
3-4 Sally Walker
5-6 Nick Tithecott
7-8 Simon Gay (C)
(or view it on Campanophile)