[Podcast] Bonnie St. John on Micro-Resilience

September 18, 2018 Sarah Mulcahy

Bonnie St. John

Resilience is about adapting in the face of adversity – no matter what life throws at you. I can think of few people who embody the term more than WorkHuman 2018 speaker Bonnie St. John.

Now the CEO of Blue Circle Leadership Institute, Bonnie was the first African American to win a winter Olympic medal; she won a silver and two bronze in alpine skiing. But what might surprise you is that her right leg was amputated when she was just 5 years old.

A Harvard graduate and Rhodes Scholar, Bonnie now has made it her life mission to help other people find their purpose and passion in life – and build habits to help make them more successful. Her most recent book is titled, “Micro-Resilience: Minor Shifts for Major Boosts in Focus, Drive, and Energy.” She says trying to approach resilience from a macro level can be daunting for people. What are small steps and choices we can make every day to build better long-term habits both at work and at home? Bonnie shares her thoughts in the latest WorkHuman Radio episode embedded at the top of this post.

One of my favorite parts of the interview is Bonnie’s advice to young people, or even young professionals just entering the workforce. She says, “Kids are on social media and they see everything so perfect and they don’t understand that there’s a lot of failure on the way to getting anything done … If I have 10 things on my resume, there are at least 100 failures behind that.”

Accepting failure as a natural part of life, and even as a necessary step in creativity and innovation, is an important takeaway that we can apply in the workplace as well.

I hope you enjoy the show!

About the Author

Sarah Mulcahy

Sarah is senior content marketing manager at Workhuman. When not writing and reading about all things culture, leadership, recognition, and appreciation, she enjoys iced coffee, running, and spending time with her daughters, Mabel and Eva.

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