Mental Resilience: Bouncing Back From Adversity
"We're all more capable than we think we are." – Sel Ledermen, PhD "The sun will come out tomorrow." "When life hands you lemons, make lemonade." "Put on a happy face."Nothing is more annoying than a handful of trite clichés when you are battling adversity and would really prefer a little sympathy, but these Pollyanna-like clichés point out that it is far healthier to develop the ability to bounce back from adversity than it is to remain mired in misfortune.
The Power of ResilienceSel Ledermen, PhD, a Manhattan psychologist, defines resilience as "the ability to decide that you want to be your best and that you can deal constructively with the "slings and arrows of outrageous fortune." He points out that in bouncing back from adversity, you may not get exactly where you want to be. Instead, Ledermen says that resilience is the ability to decide that no matter what happens to you, you are going to learn from it. "Resilient people accept responsibility for their lives and their choices, and they understand what's gone wrong so they can fix it."Resilient people are better able to cope with what life dishes out because they learn to deal with present stressors as well as future adversity, adds Robin Dee Post, PhD, a Denver psychologist. They are able to bounce back from stresses in an adaptive, active, healthy way, Post explains. They feel effective and powerful, not helpless. After dealing with loss, trauma, or stress, resilient people can refocus on what is ahead without feeling overwhelmed or allowing past events to have a negative impact.