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Resilience is emotional strength — the ability to cope when things go wrong.

It helps you to bounce back and adapt to stress and change in a healthy way.


This video is a dramatic scenario used to provoke thought about displaying personal resilience while online. It features a teenage female locking herself in a bathroom to avoid four female peers. The females are played by actors.

Stacey runs down an alley, pursued by a group of girls.

Stacey runs into a community centre bathroom and locks the door of her stall just as a youth worker exits the second stall

Veronica, the group leader, pushes the bathroom door open but stops abruptly when she sees the youth worker at the sink. She turns and exits.

Stacey’s phone pings with a message notification.

The girls stand outside on their phones, texting Stacey.

Stacey’s phone pings repeatedly, with the texts popping up in conversation bubbles around her, reading “feelin @ home in the toilet w/all the other scum??” and “ur the reason deodorant exists” amongst them

As the notifications stream in rapidly, Stacey gets increasingly agitated. She begins to cry and puts her hands over her ears to block the text sounds.

A mid shot of Veronica, relentlessly texting.Stacey brings her hands down and stares at the wall, her attention grabbed by a graffiti quote that says “THEY DON’T WRITE YOUR STORY...YOU DO.”

Stacey stares at the quote, its meaning sinking in.

Veronica and her group enter the community centre, heading for the bathroom.

Stacey opens the bathroom door and faces Veronica.

Veronica stops in disbelief.Stacey walks past them, head held high and exits the community centre with the group following her.

The group heckle Stacey who walks on, unaffected

The music builds as Stacey puts on her headphones, drowning out the insults. She walks on, a small smile on her face

Logo shows the Australian coat of arms above the words Australian Government, and the eSafety Commissioner with the web address

The power to bounce back

Resilience is emotional strength.

'… I just try not to read into it too much' (Kenneth, 17)

  • How can I change this situation?
  • What can I control?
  • What can I do to help myself?
  • What are my strengths?
  • How have I dealt with this in the past?
  • How can I learn from this?
  • How can I adapt?
  • How can I use this situation to improve my life?

Everyone can be resilient.

You might still feel stressed or anxious sometimes — but it's how you deal with it that counts.

U can … take it easy on yourself!

It helps to look for the positive in situations and appreciate the good times. You can try to cope with challenges by seeing them as opportunities to learn and improve. While it can sometimes feel important to have a lot of ‘likes’ or comments, not having them doesn’t mean there is anything wrong with you.

U can … choose positive people to talk to who can support you in dealing with your worries or fears.

Talking to a friend about what’s going on can help you to understand the situation and may help reduce any stress that you face. A good relationship is one where you talk to each other in an understanding and respectful way, and solve problems together.

When choosing a positive person to talk to, you can ask yourself: Are you able to be yourself around them? Do they make you feel good about yourself? Would you stand up for each other? Do you listen to each other when you need to talk about your feelings? Can you disagree respectfully? Can you work things out if you have a fight? Do they encourage you to seek other opinions and supports? Do they respect your values, opinions and boundaries?

U can … keep it real.

Try to be honest with yourself if you’re in a tricky situation online. Sometimes it can help to work through difficult feelings either by writing it down or talking to someone. This can help you figure out what will work best for you.

U can … go online to gain knowledge and technical skills.

Learn how to take control by blocking and reporting things that upset you. To find out how to do this on social media platforms, go here.

U can … take control of your online identity.

Be aware of your own thoughts and opinions on topics so that you are better prepared to take part in online discussions, current affairs, and social conversations with confidence. Don’t be afraid to respond to negative comments with a positive attitude.

U can … be confident in your own beliefs and opinions.

Be aware of your own values and act in line with how YOU feel about things, not how someone else might tell you to feel or act. Live up to your values online.

U can … take back what’s yours.

Just because something online has upset you, it doesn’t mean that it has to stay that way. When you’re feeling helpless, there are things you can do to get some power back. #rewriteyourstory

U can … seek the support of a parent, carer or professional (like Kids Helpline).

Talking to someone about your concerns doesn’t make you weak or helpless. Reaching out to others in a stressful situation can help you feel more in control. They can listen to your perspective and help you think of solutions to problems.

U can … be honest with your parents or carer about what you do online.

Honesty helps to build trust and better relationships. Stronger relationships can lead to better respect for each other’s choices and opinions, and gives your family greater confidence in your ability to respond to risks yourself.

U can … be confident in saying no.

Just because your friends are talking about something on the internet or sharing a particular link, it doesn’t mean you have to do the same if it doesn’t feel right to you. Remember that you are always in control of what you say and do online. ‘No’ is an acceptable answer. A true friend will get that.

U can … take a break.

Know your limits when it comes to the online world. Online issues and worries don’t always reflect reality, and sometimes stepping away from a situation can help calm you down so that you can think more clearly about the problem.

Some expert advice

  • Take it easy on yourself! Sometimes when something bad happens, the stress might make you more sensitive to normal day-to-day events and make things seem more extreme than usual.
  • During stressful times keep some routine and a ‘quiet’ space or activities where you can feel calm and relaxed.
  • Take care of yourself. This means making sure you eat well and get enough sleep! It’s easier to face problems when you feel your best.
  • Take things one step at a time. Don’t try have all the answers at once.
  • Do some things that help you feel good about yourself.
  • Seek support if needed. Kids Helpline (for ages 5 to 25 years) is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • Know that it’s OK to make mistakes and not be perfect.

Resources for teachers

This page is part of the Young and eSafe classroom resource.

For lesson plans and other information go to Young and eSafe: about this resource

Last updated: 19/12/2023