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The Powerful On The Spot ABC Coping Strategy

The Powerful On The Spot ABC Coping Strategy

Every day there will be events that happen that test our resilience capacity. You get stuck in traffic, wake up late and have to rush the school or whatever else life throws at you. How you react is crucial to building up your resilience.

Cognitive restructuring (or changing the way we think during a stressful event) is the best method for managing stress at work, according to a "meta-study" published in the Journal of Occupational Health Psychology.
In this observation of studies, which focuses on techniques used to manage stress, cognitive restructuring was compared against other common "stress interventions" like deep breathing and relaxation.

The cognitive restructuring came out to be the best intervention of the lot. The findings suggested that "Cognitive restructuring promotes the development of proactive responses to stress." Put another way, it helps prevent stress.

Founded by Doctor Albert Ellis and Aaron Beck, was this mindset reframing technique that gets people to dispute their negative self-talk and therefore use it to control their thinking during a stressful event.

What their research found is that most people the severity of a stressful event. Ellis liked to call this phenomenon: "stinking thinking." This way of thinking results in a common response like:

"I've got the worst job in the world."
"I'll never get all this work done on time."
"Why does this always happen to me."
"I'm a complete failure."

This negative thought process often clouds people's mindsets and leads to irrational and often completely false outcomes.

When we engage in this way of thinking, we are the ones who suffer. In essence, we become our own worst enemy for our often false recognition of the situation that's causing us to feel stressed. Ellis and Beck came up with a way to change our overly negative thinking that's as easy to remember as ABC or, in this case, A+B=C.
In this equation, the A stands for the Activating event (it's the source of stress). The B stands for your Beliefs (it's what you THINK or believe about the stress). The C stands for the Consequence or the result of A+B. (It's how you feel inside due to the stress plus your thoughts about it.)

Most people think that A = C, something happens to them like getting a flat type on the way to work and instantly the exaggerated negative thoughts make things a lot more stressful than they need to be. "This would only happen to me. Why does this always happen to me!"

Ellis suggests that if you notice that you are finding yourself adopting a negative thought process, you can challenge that that by infusing B (your belief system) and disputing that with another more objective, rational thought – "Ok, I've got a flat tyre, but this happens to millions of people every day, I'll phone work, explain what happened and wait for the AA to arrive to change it."

As a result, every time you challenge your belief system and use the ABC model technique, you will get better at it and build a little resilience. In time things that used to bother you don't bother you anymore

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How Resilient Are You? Take The Test

How Resilient Are You? Take The Test

To work on your resilient levels, you first develop an understanding of how your resilience looks right now. Below is an abbreviated version of the Nicholson McBride Resilience Questionnaire (NMRQ).

For each question, score yourself between 1 and 5, where 1 = strongly disagree and 5 = strongly agree. Be completely honest: understanding the specific areas in which you lack resilience will enable you to get the most out of our 10 point booster plan

Resilience Questionnaire Score

1. In a difficult spot, I turn at once to what can be done to put things right __
2. I influence where I can, rather than worrying about what I can't influence __
3. I don't take criticism personally __
4. I generally manage to keep things in perspective __
5. I am calm in a crisis __
6. I'm good at finding solutions to problems __
7. I wouldn't describe myself as an anxious person __
8. I don't tend to avoid conflict __
9. I try to control events rather than being a victim of circumstances __
10. I trust my intuition __
11. I manage my stress levels well __
12. I feel confident and secure in my position __

Add up your total score and take a look at the resilience categories below to which one you fall into.
0 – 37
A developing level of resilience. Your score indicates that, although you may not always feel at the mercy of events, you would benefit significantly from developing aspects of your behaviour.
38 - 43
An established level of resilience. Your score indicates that you may occasionally have tough days when you can't quite make things go your way, but you rarely feel ready to give up.
44- 48
A strong level of resilience. Your above-average score indicates that you are pretty good at rolling with the punches, and you have an impressive track record of turning setbacks into opportunities.
49 -60
An exceptional level of resilience. Your score indicates that you are very resilient most of the time and rarely fail to bounce back – whatever life throws at you. You believe in making your luck.

Benchmarking your resilience levels allows you to see how things look right now while providing a framework for improvement (if any) in the future.

Click here below to read on and claim your free copy of this brand new eBook

Resilience starts with values

Resilience Starts With Values

If you wanted to lose weight, get fitter and stronger, you would probably go about doing the following:
•Join a gym
•Lift weights
•Walk more
•Cook more nutritious meals
•Rinse and repeat

As a result, over time, you would probably start to see definition in various body parts, more energy levels and better health markers all around. It doesn't happen overnight. However, you have to put in the work to see the benefits. Not only that, you have to keep putting in the work to keep those benefits.

Similarly, building mental resilience is no different. Just like you need to learn proper technique to exercise effectively in the gym, learning the "mental techniques" allows you to build your resilience capacity and mental strength.

An important part of this is identifying your values. Previous research findings suggest that aligning with personal values helps people be more resilient in the face of stressful situations. For example, according to resilient school leaders, the process of "privately clarifying, publicly articulating, and consciously acting on" core values is a great source of strength in helping them face adversity and emerge stronger than before (Patterson and Kelleher, Resilient School Leaders. 2005, p. 51).

Another study by Creswell and colleagues (2005) showed that reflecting on personal values buffered physiological and psychological stress responses during a laboratory stress challenge.

In essence, values provide a reason to keep going which is a cornerstone in becoming more resilient. For example, if "providing" and "safety" was an important value for you and you lost your job, it's easier to move quickly and seek out other jobs because you're aligning with your core values. The values themselves act as motivators.

Identifying values
Your values are the things that you consider to be important in life, such as leading, kindness, safety, freedom, helping others and so on. Let's start with a value affirmation task to align the values that are important to you and which you can harness during challenging periods in your life.

Step 1: Describe a stressful life event

Grab a piece of paper or pull out the notes app on your phone and take a moment to consider a challenging area in your life that is currently taking place. For example, you may have recently lost your job because of a pandemic or perhaps your partner has there is more pressure on you finically to provide for your family. Briefly, write down what this stressful life event is.

Step 2: List reasons to come out the other side

Consider why it is worth it to you to keep going and get through this stressful, challenging period in your life. For example, getting through the challenge of losing a job and securing a new job may show your kids that overcoming adversity should be embraced, and therefore you have shown this by being a role model to them. They might see you as a "hero" as a result. Write down as many reasons as you can.....

Click here below to read on and claim your free copy of this brand new eBook

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