Facing adversity, building resilience and finding joy

Here are some facts that we need to know

Remember and know that Grief is a demanding companion

Beware the “three P’s”

Psychologist Martin Seligman reports that three tendencies impede people’s recovery from hardships:

1) “Personalization” is the belief that it’s all your fault,

2) “pervasiveness” is the belief that the occurrence will have a negative effect on everything else in your life and;

3) “permanence” is the belief that things will never get better. People who dodge the three P’s cope better.

Remove the words “I’m sorry” from your vocabulary.

Quickly return to work and keep your mind occupied.

Learned to think less in terms of “always” and “never” and, instead, to say “sometimes” and “lately.”

Begin to practice gratitude on daily basis, focus on the positivity and drown out the negativity.

Name the elephant in the room

We need to acknowledges with empathy that although most grieving people want to voice their feelings, people tend to avoid the subject of death.

Psychologists call this avoidance as the “mum effect”.

It isolates the sufferer. Often, the most empathetic, understanding people have also endured tragedy. Many who want to express sympathy don’t know how. 

Don’t Ask, “Is there anything I can do?” Just do it.

When people are suffering, giving them access to help is comforting, even if they don’t pursue it. Some people respond to a crisis with empathy, others with avoidance. However, just showing up has value.

Everyone grieves differently. Take your cues from your hurting friend. Follow the “Platinum Rule,” to “treat others as ‘they’ want to be treated.” Asking, “Is there anything I can do?” puts the burden on the grieving person, who may have no answer. Just pick something and do it. The only wrong moves you can make, are to disappear, to tell people how to grieve or to judge them for their choices.

Try Journaling ,appreciate the”small wins”

Journaling has a therapeutic effect in lessening stress, anxiety and anger. Recording what psychologists call your small wins – little daily victories – boosts your confidence.

Focusing on immediate concerns, taking small steps and making just a few decisions at a time will help to regain our footing in the world.

Parley resilience into “post-traumatic growth”

Some people who experience trauma suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and anxiety, and some manage to muster resilience. A third group actually experiences growth and “bounces forward” after tragedy. Dr. Joe Kasper, who lost his son Ryan to a rare form of epilepsy, lists five types of post-tragedy growth: “finding personal strength, gaining appreciation, forming deeper relationships, discovering more meaning in life and seeing new possibilities.”

  • Finding personal strength,
  • Gaining appreciation,
  • Forming deeper relationships,
  • Discovering more meaning in life and seeing new possibilities.”

“Take things back” from your loss.

“Survivor guilt is a thief of joy.”

Yet, a life lived without happiness is wasted.

Allowing yourself to have fun and be happy takes self-compassion.

Finding counsels in the little moments that make life truly worth living.

Respect children’s unique sensibilities.

Look at your children for inspiration during adversity.

  • Children’s neural plasticity allows their brains to adapt more fluidly to tragedy than adults can.
  • Kids process grief in shorter bursts.
  • Having a sense of control during adversity is empowering.
  • Show children that they matter by listening, caring about them and valuing their ideas. 
  • You can draw strength from a caring community.

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Categories: Personal Development

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