Many people react to adverse circumstances like separation or divorce with a flood of strong emotions and a sense of uncertainty.
The good news is that, in general, people adapt well over time to life-changing situations and stressful conditions.
I know—because I’ve seen it in my clients over and over—that people have the skills and resources they need to bounce back.
The problem is, when you’re under stress, you forget your strengths and skills.
Here are 5 reminders of things that will help you as you regain your footing and move forward with your life:
Accepting help and support from those who care about you and will listen to you strengthens resilience.
Choose your confidants carefully and they will be excellent resources
Acknowledge that change is a part of life.
Some change feels good and some feels bad.
With changes you don’t like, might help to say to yourself, “This is tough. I don’t like it. AND change is a part of life. I deal with change all the time. I can handle this.
Make yourself a “done” list.
It can feel daunting to see an endless “to-do” list and only be able to cross off one or two things.
At the end of the day, see what it’s like to make a “done” list… including all the things you’ve done today, big or small.
Even the basics really matter, like eating, showering and chatting with friends.
When you’re ready, look for opportunities for self-discovery.
People often learn something about themselves and may find that they have grown in some respect as a result of their struggle with loss.
It’s important not to push yourself with this, because it is important to acknowledge when things are difficult and painful.
But you can be curious, keeping in mind the idea that personal growth can come from adversity. Who knows what you might find.
Nurture a positive view of yourself.
Developing confidence in your ability to solve problems and trusting your instincts helps build resilience.
Even though it may not be feeling the truth of this, it might be worth trying a little exercise.
Open your arms wide and say to yourself: “I can handle this.” or “I will get through this.” Try this a few times a day and especially when you’re feeling worked up.
Most of all, keep reminding yourself that it’s normal to have all kinds of feelings coming up, and completely normal to feel overwhelmed.
If you’d like support to build your resilience, why not reach out?
Shulamit Ber Levtov, MA, RSW