How has adversity changed your life? We all deal with hardship throughout our lives, some more than others, but while some fall apart others thrive. Resilience is the process of adapting and coping well in the face of adversity. What many people don’t realize is that resilience is a life skill that can be learned. Today many people are dealing with tremendous hardship and stress, but may not be coping well because they didn’t acquire these skills. We’ve all heard the line, “Life is not fair,” but very few people were instructed on how to deal with the unfairness of life. In my practice, I work with patients who have a “victim mentality” and my job is to help them create a “survivor mentality.” It often requires a change in thinking and taking charge of the things they can control rather than focusing on blaming or justification. Resilience also involves persevering through failure, like the book I’ve been working on getting published, so far to no avail. We all know the story of Thomas Edison who failed 1,000 times before inventing the light bulb. Everyone has a story from their own lives about a difficult time or situation that they overcame through perseverance. Studies have shown that resilience prevents depression and anxiety, raises self-control and confidence, provides a sense of empowerment, and improves learning power. Our resilience to life stressors is modeled to our children so they can learn the skills to cope by observing us. Next month (October 1st) I’ll be giving the Keynote Address on resilience at the Brevard County School Board (check my Facebook page for details) and sharing more about creating a resilient family. Check next week’s blog to learn how to build resilience.
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