Resilience Tattoos: History, Meanings & Designs

Resilience Tattoos: History, Meanings & Designs

Have you faced a troubling time in your life recently but emerged from the experience stronger than ever? If so, you might be contemplating getting a resilience tattoo to serve as a reminder of your strength and perseverance. Read on to learn more about the actual meaning of resilience tattoos and the popular designs you can get!

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Why Are People Get Resilience Tattoos?

Most people get a resilience tattoo as a meaningful and personalized symbol of their strength, bravery and grit that enabled them to overcome a major obstacle or traumatic event in their life. Although the memory of such an event can be painful, it is also essential to acknowledge the amount of mental, physical or emotional strength that you displayed in order to get over it.

Not everything that hurts you makes you stronger—but it does enable you to discover the reservoirs of hidden strength and courage you possess that you might not even be aware existed. People or events that hurt us cannot be forgotten or forgiven, but in order to heal it is important to move on and give yourself time and space to recover. 

Having a reminder of your determination and courage in the form of a resilience tattoo will not only help make a traumatic event less haunting but also enable you to see yourself in a better light and recognize your strengths. It will encourage you to face any new challenge without fear because you have proof of your ability to survive and persevere. 

Simply put, a resilience tattoo is a symbol—a mark of what you have survived, a reminder that you can overcome any new obstacle, and evidence of your strength and bravery. 

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What is the History of Resilience Tattoos?

While the art of tattooing has been around for centuries, resilience tattoos are a pretty recent trend that has cropped up in the past few years. The word resilience itself has been rapidly increasing in popularity ever since it was rediscovered a few years ago, which is probably what sparked this viral trend of getting a resiliency tattoo.

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What Do Resilience Tattoos Symbolize?

Resilience tattoos are a symbol of strength, perseverance and determination. They serve as a reminder that you have the ability to face hardships and obstacles in your life without giving up.

For some people, they might symbolize courage and perseverance, while for others they could be a symbol of healing and growth. 

They are personalized for each person according to their preference and experience. A lot of people also customize them to be a reminder of a particular event or time in their life. Ultimately, it is up to what you want them to symbolize and remind you of, as well as the personal meaning you attach to them.

There isn’t any one symbol used in resilience tattoos but rather a variety of different motifs, patterns and designs, each with their own symbolism but essentially the same meaning—resilience. Some of these symbols and artistic depictions we have listed and explained below as well. 

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What Do Resilience Tattoos Mean?

A resilience tattoo is a symbol of strength and can hold a different meaning for each person who has it, because resilience and strength do not come in any one shape or form. Ultimately, it is a reminder of your inner strength and shows that you overcame certain trials or tribulations in your life. 

Looking at the tattoo will bring back memories of your courage and toughness, so the meaning the tattoo holds for you will be special and unique. Unlike other tattoos that are usually gotten for artistic value rather than sentimental meaning, resiliency tattoos are different because they have emotional significance behind them.

However, that doesn’t mean you can’t get them for aesthetic purposes alone! If you like the way they look or want one to remind you to be more resilient, there’s no reason to hold back. 

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Characteristics and Styles of Resilience Tattoos

  • Calligraphy

A lot of people get resilience tattoos in a simple but artistic design with just the word written in beautiful calligraphy in a cursive style. You can personalize the font by writing the word by hand or choosing a design or font that you personally prefer. 

A large number of people go for this design because it is meaningful and pleasing to look at, but not too elaborate.

  • Flowers

Flowers, and nature in general, are a common theme for resiliency tattoos. This might be because flowers are a symbol of inner beauty as well as growth.

They serve as a reminder that sometimes beautiful and valuable qualities bloom as a result of adversity or hardship. You can add a simple flowery outline to your tattoo or go for a colored version.

  • Birds

Birds are another popular symbol used in resiliency tattoos.

The phoenix emerging from ashes is an especially powerful reminder of something new and better emerging from difficult times. Other birds are also commonly used to add another layer of detail or to symbolize rising above hardships.

  • Arrow

A lot of resiliency tattoos also incorporate a small arrow in the word itself or above or below it. This adds to the detail and intricacy of the tattoo and makes it more meaningful and personalized.

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Where Do Resilience Tattoos Usually Go?

Resilience tattoos can go on many different body parts depending on your personal preference. You might want it to be somewhere you can glance at easily or in a more hidden area if you want the tattoo to be more personal and intimate. It ultimately depends on your own choice, but here are some common places where they usually go:


  • On the forearm, wrist or hand
  • Fingers
  • Neck or under the collarbone
  • The side of the hip 
  • On your back, for example between the shoulders
  • The ribcage


Resiliency tattoos, as the name suggests, are a symbol of courage and perseverance. The tattoo holds a special, sentimental meaning for each person and reminds them of the strength that they possess to overcome obstacles in life. 

There are some common themes and symbols used in these tattoos like flowers, birds and arrows, but you can customize them according to your preference as well.

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