All About Resilience

Resilience is that ineffable quality that allows some people to be knocked down by life and come back stronger than ever. Rather than letting failure overcome them and drain their resolve, they find a way to rise from the ashes. Psychologists have identified some of the factors that make someone resilient, among them a positive attitude, optimism, the ability to regulate emotions, and the ability to see failure as a form of helpful feedback. Even after misfortune, resilient people are blessed with such an outlook that they are able to change course and soldier on.

Recent Posts on Resilience

Living in the Here and Now

By Susan Hooper on February 26, 2015 in Detours and Tangents
For most of my life, I have wanted to be somewhere else, living an entirely different life. A calendar from years ago showed me that I had then—and may even have now—a life that other people might envy.

The Beauty of America’s Oldest-Old Adults

By Kristin Hultgren on February 26, 2015 in The Greatest Chapter
When you are open to be moved by another, to be amazed by another, and when you listen to another with nothing but your heart, there is much to be gained in spending time with oldest-old adults. As Mark Twain noticed, “wrinkles merely mark where smiles have been.”

What Do Scientists Know About Finding a Purpose in Life?

By Todd B Kashdan Ph.D. on February 24, 2015 in Curious?
Providing information on the science of a purpose in life. heavy, beautiful, and of paramount importance

The Seasons of Life: or How to Survive Life's Winter Moments

By Daryl R. Van Tongeren Ph.D., on February 24, 2015 in Meaning Making
What can surviving February teach us about enjoy all of life's seasons?

Malignant Narcissism and the Murder of a Parent

By Carrie Barron M.D. on February 24, 2015 in The Creativity Cure
This blog explores Malignant Narcissism and the damaging impact that it can have on family members and others.

First Synesthete on Mars?

By Maureen Seaberg on February 24, 2015 in Sensorium
Synesthete Andrew Tunks believes our mind's inner space is crucial to success in outer space.

Addicted to Busy: 4 Strategies to Ease the Guilt & Burnout

Keeping busy at all costs is the cultural status quo, but the drive to do more is impacting our families, our work, and our health. The result of being Addicted to Busy is not only a lack of time, but also exhaustion, anxiety, guilt, fear, social comparison, inauthenticity and physical illness.

Grow a Key Inner Strength

By Rick Hanson Ph.D. on February 23, 2015 in Your Wise Brain
Use these four questions help grow inner strengths. 1) What's the issue? 2) What psychological resource - inner strength - if it were more present in your mind, would really help with this issue? 3) How could you have experiences of this inner strength? 4) How could you help this experience of the inner strength really sink in to you?

7 Ways to Silence Your Inner Critic

Your inner dialogue can either fuel your success or prevent you from reaching your greatest potential.

Keeping Up! Older Workers' Adaptation at Work After Age 55

By Eddy Ng Ph.D. on February 23, 2015 in Diverse and Competitive
Older workers do want to stay in the workforce longer

Get Robust, Because Resilience Is Too Little Too Late

By Jeremy E Sherman Ph.D. on February 22, 2015 in Ambigamy
Resilience is the ability to recover your cool quickly. Robustness is keeping your cool no matter what. James Bond is robust. You don't see him recovering his cool after a fight. He keeps his cool in the fight. Here are 14 quick strategies for cultivating your robustness, so you can stand up for yourself invulnerably.

How to Help People Grieve

By Alex Lickerman M.D. on February 22, 2015 in Happiness in this World
After a prolonged, debilitating illness, two weeks ago my father--at long last--died. As a physician, I've observed many people experience loss, but this is the first time I've lost someone close to me. This has, not surprisingly, put me on the receiving end of many condolences. Yet unable to rid myself of my analytical mind even in the midst of grief, I've found myself

Witnessing an Abusive Relationship -- 'Whiplash': the Movie

By Barbara Schildkrout on February 22, 2015 in The Clinical Picture
This psychological review of the film "Whiplash" discusses one of the most powerful but least apparent dynamics in an abusive relationship -- the manipulation of truth. “Whiplash” was nominated for Best Picture 2015. J.K. Simmons won the award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role.

8 Negative Attitudes of Chronically Unhappy People

All of us experience negative thoughts from time to time. How we manage our negative attitudes can make the difference between confidence versus fear, hope versus despair, mastery versus victimhood, and victory versus defeat. Here are eight negative attitudes of chronically unhappy people...

Mindfulness for Chronic Pain

By Michael Hogan Ph.D on February 20, 2015 in In One Lifespan
There is a strong emerging body of evidence for the effectiveness of mindfulness- and acceptance-based approaches for a range of difficulties, including chronic pain. We tried to take mindfulness for chonic pain online. We called our programme Mindfulness in Action (MIA). The results of our MIA trial were interesting.

On Developing a C.A.L.M. M.O.

By Gregg Henriques on February 20, 2015 in Theory of Knowledge
A C.A.L.M. M.O. is a stance of "Meta-cognitively Observing" our thoughts and feelings with a Curious, Accepting, Loving compassionate attitude that is Motivated to learn more and grow from a position of security.

Emotions As a Second Language - Or Should They Be Our First?

Emotional literacy is being able to feel and identify one’s feeling states. This fluency enhances emotional self-regulation, lessens over-reactivity to negative emotions such as anger, and is the basis of interpersonal emotional modulation.

The Teenage Brain on Drugs

By Richard Taite on February 19, 2015 in Ending Addiction for Good
One way to look at addiction is to consider it a form of learning, a type of learning that is extremely effective in its ability to affect the adolescent brain, report researchers working under an NIH grant.

Escaping Across the Border Through Art

By David Gussak Ph.D., ATR-BC on February 19, 2015 in Art on Trial
Often, women who are emigrating from Mexico—sometimes illegally—may be doing so to escape from violence and suffering. Sometimes, they escape towards it. This post examines how one art therapist, guest blogger Valentina Castro, uses art to help endure and heal from such pain.

Impulse Control Can Work Against You

When “I shouldn’t” becomes “I can’t,” we can end up creating obstacles for ourselves that interfere, not only with our self-development, but with our basic happiness.

What’s Holding You Back From Becoming a Hero?

By Scott T Allison Ph.D. on February 18, 2015 in Why We Need Heroes
Heroes find a way to better themselves, and they aren’t afraid to seek help.

5 Ways Resilient People Use Failure to Their Advantage

While failure causes some people to give up, others use it as an opportunity to grow stronger and become better.

4 Ways to Keep Your Cool, No Matter What

With these four simple steps we can become emotionally resilient, gracefully and calmly handling every situation that comes our way.

Compassion in the Clinical Hour

By Susan M. Pollak MTS, Ed.D., on February 17, 2015 in The Art of Now
Can compassion increase the therapeutic alliance?

Horses Bring Healing to Wounded Warriors

Horses make sense for soldiers/

The Body Knows: Part II

This follow-up to an earlier post tracks changes and lessons learned about the body-mind connection for three people: an injured athlete, a harried executive, and an overworked older person.a combination of reflection and small changes can shift the mental and physical manifestations of stress.

Pride and Prejudice and Compassion

By Sherry Hamby Ph.D. on February 16, 2015 in The Web of Violence
How does gender affect the relationship between compassion and mental health? Revisit a classic love story in this blog as we look at how compassion could drive you crazy.

5 Tips about Writing and Health

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on February 16, 2015 in Shadow Boxing
Research on writing finds evidence of its positive influence on emotional and physical health.

Lifestyle Interventions for Depression

Clinical depression is a complicated condition. Stress of course is known and easily accepted to be the main cause, but two people may endure the same stress with only one developing depression. What lifestyle factors can make us more resilient, and why?

Floating: An Exercise in Simple Trust

By Julie J. Exline Ph.D. on February 14, 2015 in Light and Shadow
It’s a cool, starlit night, and I’m alone in the hotel pool. Leaning back, I release my feet from the bottom. I feel myself lift up. The quiet of the water surrounds and embraces me. I am fully supported.Sometimes people experience God in this way, too—like water that surrounds, holds, and sustains us. Our part is lean back and let go—but this isn't easy for most of us.