Is your family optimized?

As a military family member, you might hear about building and fostering resilience fairly often. Military family resilience is a big concept with many moving pieces. To help break it down—and optimize your family in the process—take a look at these key components of the most resilient families. And check out the top 11 traits of optimized families, too.

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Published on: April 10, 2019

Is Your Family Optimized?

It takes a lot of character and grit to be a military family. But as many families know, true resilience comes from supporting each other and navigating challenges together. Optimized families who face adversity head-on tend to come through the tough stuff feeling stronger, braver, and more resourceful.  

Be in it together


  • Think about what matters most to your family.
  • Strive to learn something positive about each other after a challenging time.
  • Accept the present for what it is and trust your ability to adapt over time.

Ask yourself

  • What does your family stand for?
  • Which values are important to you?
  • What does the future look like for your family?

Build your bonds.


  • Practice flexibility to rebound when things don’t go as planned.
  • Apologize, forgive, and show accountability to help mend things and move on.
  • Enjoy and appreciate fun times together.

Ask yourself

  • What are your family’s routines and traditions?
  • Do you say what you mean and mean what you say?
  • How do you spend quality time together?

Share, listen, and learn


  • Share emotions openly and respectfully.
  • Prioritize empathy and honesty.
  • Talk about problems before they become unmanageable.

Ask yourself

  • How do you resolve conflict?
  • What can you learn from your failures as a family?
  • How do you validate each other’s feelings?  

Human Performance Resource Center.  Consortium for Health and Military Performance.

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Meadows, S. O., Beckett, M. K., Bowling, K., Golinelli, D., Fisher, M. P., Martin, L. T., . . . Osilla, K. C. (2015). Family resilience in the military: Definitions, models, and policies. Retrieved 22 May 2019 from

Walsh, F. (2006). Strengthening Family Resilience (Second ed.). New York, NY: The Guilford Press.