twinkie on a table

What Twinkies can teach us about resiliency.

The two things in the world we all share in this world are laughter and pain. We’ve all got problems. The levels of those problems vary, but we’ve all got problems. When you can take things that are painful and make them funny, that’s a gift – to you and your audience.

Kevin Hart

Listen, I love me some Kevin Hart. Even though he did get slaughtered by James Corden in a Drop the Mic challenge that is absolutely hilarious.

Simmer down, Kevin. I love you and I love this quote because it’s relatable. We (and those around us) are better when we are able to move past the problems that we experience in life. It’s about being gritty, or resilient – being able to adapt to life’s misfortunes and setbacks. 

When problems creep up in your life, do you tend to bounce back or fall apart? 

Personally, I used to crumble more easily than cookies made with too much flour. 

When you have resilience, you’re able to harness your inner strength which helps you rebound from a setback or challenge.  If you lack resilience, you might dwell on problems, feel victimized, become overwhelmed, or turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms – all stressful stuff. 

When it comes to reducing stress, resilience is critical because, as Kevin Hart said, we all have problems – so we’re going to have to deal with them in a constructive and positive way.

That brings us to… Twinkies. Yes, Twinkies. While snack cakes may not have all the answers to life’s riddles, the humble Twinkie certainly knows how to pick itself up when it gets knocked down.

It seems like forever ago that the world stopped spinning when the Twinkie disappeared from store shelves back in 2012. But, like a Phoenix, they rose! Soon, they were back on the shelves in a turnaround billed as “The Sweetest Comeback in the History of Ever.” 

What are the benefits of building your resilience? Well, resilience won’t make your problems go away, but it can help you to see past them, find enjoyment in life, and better handle stress. If you aren’t as resilient as you’d like to be, don’t fret! You can develop skills to become more resilient.

Let’s look at some tips that will help you stage your own revival when you experience setbacks.

Comeback lessons inspired by Twinkies.

  1. Count on your friends. Hostess couldn’t have done it alone. The Twinkie comeback was driven by its loyal fans who campaigned on social media. To be resilient, it’s important to develop strong friendships.
  2. Simplify your message. Twinkie advertising focused on their return date, affectionately known as CakeFace Day. Identify your top priority and avoid getting bogged down in details.
  3. Tap into nostalgia. A few financial troubles couldn’t dim people’s fond childhood memories of Twinkies. Hold onto the good things in your past, even when it’s necessary to make changes.
  4. Pick a good name. The words we choose have a powerful effect on our thinking. Twinkies might have disappeared forever if they were just another sponge cake.
  5. Provide value to others. Not everything in life can be deep-fried and full of sugar. Truth be told, it’s probably better that way. The important thing is to concentrate on how your actions serve others and why they appreciate what you do.

Other comeback lessons.

  1. Learn from your missteps. Building on your failures allows you to learn and grow. Any experience can make you a better person if you handle it constructively.
  2. Hold yourself accountable. You may need to clean up before you can move on. Repair any harm you cause to others and yourself. Let your boss know you missed a deadline, but you’re restructuring your work so you’ll be quicker the next time.
  3. Spot patterns. It’s common to make the same errors over and over again. Figure out what conditions sabotage your diet or make you late for work. Then, you’ll be able to make the necessary changes.
  4. Take risks. Hang onto your courage. You may make a few blunders while you’re seizing valuable opportunities.
  5. Seek inspiration. The world is full of role models even better than Twinkies. Nelson Mandela and Martha Stewart both put their lives back on track after prison.
  6. Forgive yourself. Others will be influenced by the attitude you adopt. If you pardon yourself, you’re likely to find more acceptance all around you.
  7. Offer second chances. Extend mercy to others too. They’re likely to return the favor.
  8. Acknowledge the past. Of course, questions may linger about your previous conduct. Be forthright about the facts. Let your current actions prove that you’ve matured.
  9. Build up your capabilities. To get more promising results the second time around, you may need to beef up your resources. If you struggled in your last job, consider going back to school for an additional degree or certification. Talk with a therapist to help your second marriage last longer than your first.
  10. Start now. Stop dwelling on all the reasons why it would be difficult for you to make a comeback. Decide to do your best from this moment on. You may be pleasantly surprised by the results.

Speaking of starting now: Head on over to complete a Personal Stress Profile questionnaire to receive guidance to help you manage your specific stress factors.

Final thoughts.

Don’t let problems from the past, present, or future hold you back. They’re fraught with stress and other negative feelings that suck the joy out of life. With a positive attitude and enough effort, you can put any setback behind you and build a brighter future. Twinkies taught us that!

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