When you find yourself in a crisis, having the right attitude makes the difference between despair and determination. Dr Jeffrey Rossman offers these six steps:
(1) Look for ways to find meaning. Resilient people use their experience to help others. ‘[God] comforts us every time we have trouble, so when others have trouble, we can comfort them.’ (2 Corinthians 1:4 NCV)
(2) Examine your priorities. ‘Teach us to use wisely all the time we have.’ (Psalm 90:12 CEV) How would you like to spend your time differently now? Who would you most like to spend it with? How can you use your strengths in the service of what is important to you? If you had only a year to live, what conversations would you want to have? What kind of person would you want to be?
(3) Believe you can bounce back. A crucial aspect of resilience is faith in your ability to cope. Even if you have the practical skills to deal with the issue at hand, unless you believe in your emotional flexibility, you will waiver.
(4) Get moving. Physical exercise boosts your energy and mood. It reinforces your ability to take charge of your health and well-being.
(5) Step out of your comfort zone. ‘Keep on growing in knowledge and understanding.’ Learn a new language or computer program; begin a project at home or work. Embracing the unfamiliar strengthens your confidence and capacity to handle new situations. The more you require of yourself, the more resilient you will become.
(6) Clear the weeds that are choking your optimism. When you start thinking pessimistic or cynical thoughts, step back and reframe your perspective by looking for concrete steps to solve the problem.