Headline, July 06 2020/ ''' '' RESILIENCE TOOLBOX REMINISCES '' '''



''STRESS ISN'T ALL BAD,'' said Steven M. Southwick, professor emeritus of psychology, at PTSD and Resilience at Yale University School of Medicine and -

And a co-author of the book ''Resilience : The Science of Mastering Life's Greatest Challenges.''

RESEARCH HAS SHOWN THAT DEDICATION to a worthy cause or belief in something greater than oneself - religiously or spiritually - enhances resilience, as does the ability to be flexible in your thinking.

Resilient people reappraise a difficult situation and look for meaningful opportunities within it. They also have a social support system and they support others ''Very few resilient people,'' Dr. Southwick said, ''go it alone.''

YOU CAN THINK OF RESILIENCE AS A set of skills that can be, and often is, learned. Part of the skill-building comes from exposure to very difficult but manageable things. 

'THE WAY I THINK ABOUT IS THAT THERE ARE TEMPERAMENTAL or personal  characteristics that are genetically influenced like risk-taking, or whether you're an introvert or extrovert,'' said Karestan Koenen, professor of psychiatry at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Professor Koenen studies how genes shape our risk of post-traumatic stress disorder. ''We all know people that are just very even-tempered,'' she said. ''Some of that is simply how we're built physiologically.''

Yet it isn't true that some people are born more resilient than others, Professor Koenen said : ''That's because almost any trait can be a positive or negative, depending on the situation.''

Far more important, it seems, is an individual's history. The most significant determinant of resilience - noted in nearly every review or study of resilience in the last 50 years - is the quality of our close personal relationships, especially with parents and primary caregivers. Early attachments to parents play a crucial, lifelong role in human adaptation.

''How loved you felt as a child is a great predictor of how you manage all kinds of difficult situations later in life,'' said Bassel van der Kolk professor of psychiatry at Boston University School of Medicine who has been researching post-traumatic stress since the 1970s. He is the founder of the Trauma Research Federation in Boston.

Dr. van der Kolk said long-term studies showed that the first 20 years of life were especially critical. ''Different traumas at different ages have  their own impacts on our perceptions, interpretations and  expectations; these early experiences sculpt the brain, because it is a use-dependent organ,'' he said.

If you can cope today with all that's happening in the world around you, Dr. Southwick said, ''then when you you are on the other side of it, you'll be stronger.''

How we cope depends on what is in our resilience toolbox. For some people, the toolbox is filled with drugs. For others can be drinking, overeating, gambling, shopping. But these don't promote resilience

Instead, the tools common to resilient people are optimism [that is also realistic], a moral compass, religious or spiritual beliefs, cognitive and emotional flexibility and social connectedness.

The most resilient among us are people who generally don't dwell on the negative, who look for opportunities that might exist even in the darkest times.

During a quarantine, for example, a resilient person might decide it is a good time to start a meditation practice, take an online course or learn to play guitar.

George Bonanno, a professor of clinical psychology and director of the Loss, Trauma, Emotion Lab at Columbia University Teachers College advised, ''Each of us has to figure out what our particular challenges are and then determine how to get through.

The good news, he said, is that most of us will. Professor Bonanno's lab reviewed 67 studies of people who experienced all kinds of traumatic events. ''I'm talking about mass shootings, hurricanes, spinal cord injuries, things like that,'' he said.

''And two-thirds were found to be resilient. Two-thirds were able to function very well in a short period of time.''

The Honor and Serving of the Latest Global Operational Research on Hard Times, Adversity, Thinking and Coping, continues. The World Students Society thanks author, Eilene Zimmerman.

With respectful dedication to the Leaders, Grandparents, Parents, Students, Professors and Teachers of the world. See Ya all prepare and register for Great Global Elections on The World Students Society : wssciw.blogspot.com and Twitter - !E-WOW! - The Ecosystem 2011:

''' Hard - High '''

Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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