Eons ago” my teacher professor Agnihotri gave me this “mantra” that your parents would let you come home even if you fail the exam! It has always worked – I failed and failed and they never closed the door on me! Just being facetious! But the reality is that I did have my share of failures! Biggest one was when I passed all my USMLE’s and had bunch of interviews lined up to get into a psychiatric residency but the visa officer failed me in the “visa exam”. My parents still let me come home. I embraced my failure and by sheer stroke of luck, few months later, I passed the interview conducted over the phone bypassing visa officer and I was offered residency without having to come to USA in person. I was sponsored as an exchange visitor and thumbed my nose at the visa officer- couldn’t deny me because I was being sought by a prestigious institution here in USA.
Another technique which has helped me is to be realistic about the amount of time I have for an examination. I have always calculated the exact number of hours I can possibly study for an exam.
I try to visualize the test taking situation when in a meditative state of mind. I have used this gadget “MUSE” to learn meditation.
I failed my oral boards in psychiatry. In this test, one has to interview a patient in front of two examiners- it was extremely anxiogenic . All my techniques failed. I needed something else to mitigate my test anxiety. Could not afford to take any benzodiazepines because would drug my brain up which was the tool I needed the most. I researched and came upon “Kava Kava”. This a South American herb which works on anxiety without impairing the cognitive functions. I attempted again and passed the examination.
So let me sum it up. Exams are naturally provoke anxiety and for the right reason, otherwise you won’t study. Too little anxiety or too much is a problem. if you have played a string instrument, you would know that one used to have an appropriate amount of tension in the strings to play the music. Too little tension, and the music would be horrible too much would break the strings.
It is too much anxiety I’m talking about which can paralyze your brain or goes jitterbugs where you can’t study at all. One needs to learn how to give oneself these messages. That failure is not the end of the world learn how to visualize the exam situation in a meditative state of mind study realistically the number of hours you have for the exam preparation, and if all that doesn’t work takes some mild antianxiety herbal products.
Even though an astronomical growth of mankind has reduced nature to an ever-shrinking corner*- we are a product of our environment and totally at its mercy – becomes very clear when some natural calamity happens.
We are becoming more and more insulated from the elements of nature because we have learnt to live in our own little safe “catacombs”. I am borrowing from the short story by EM Forster – “the machine stops “which was written almost one century ago -plot is set against uninhabitable earth- athleticism is scoffed upon and sedentary life is promoted. No one travels anymore because everything including medical care is provided to the subjects in their little cubicle by “the machine”. It eerily forebodes some such future for us all.
The reason I am bringing this up is to see if the definition of health and mental health is being redefined.
As a society we are less tolerant with any behavior which falls outside the narrowly defined normal behavior. Take for example- ADHD. Having worked with children over the years I have noticed that we dole out the diagnosis of ADHD much more than in the past. So, logically speaking either ADHD is becoming more prevalent, because of environmental, nutritional or some other influences OR maybe that, we are allowing “normal attention”, a very limited range. What I mean that their attention was good enough for working in their farms doing agriculture and all. There could be a psycho economic gain – there is more demand to stay focused in the binary world of computers than it was in the days when we counted with fingers.
Going back to the story “the machine stops” – the protagonist’s “athleticism” couldn’t be totally stomped out – and he started to explore the space outside his catacomb and at the surface of the earth and his dear mother warns him that “machine” would punish him harshly for these transgressions. He wants to meet his mother, who lives at the other end of the world. Mother is very astonished, saying “why do you have to come to see me, we can always talk and see each other on the screen”.!
Our mind, which is programmed to live in a tightly knit social rubric but instead must accept the make believe “social networks on the social media”. On this platform, the rules of communication are such, that we say something, which we would like to hear from others, and others say exactly something which we would like to hear. The personal opinions and the meaningful conversations are vanishing*.
Let me take the liberty of making a sweeping statement, by saying that biologically we have not evolved in terms of our body or mind, since we were hunter gatherers, but the demands are being made on us to do that. the burning questions is whether it is possible or not? Furthermore, is it redefining what is normal?
*The source is Umberto Galimberti’s philosophical assay, which I have made available in one of my previous blogs.
I am spinning a pun on the famous pediatrician Winicott’s “ good enough mother” but not really!
What did he mean by that concept? Let’s explore because this has a very direct bearing on the subject matter
Winnicott thought that the “good enough mother” early on, tunes in completely with the infant because the later has no way of communicating except “crying”. She has to be like an “empath” who can read her infants mind and feel perhaps the same emotions what her child is experiencing.She is entirely devoted to the baby and tries to take care of its needs. As time goes by, however, the mother allows the infant to experience small amounts of frustration.
We can continue what else goes on in the mother – child duo but we are using this concept as a yardstick to measure “psychiatric care”.
Let’s refocus on the “patient- psychiatrist” first encounter- I need to qualify that I would be using the word “newborn/infant/toddler” to signify the “patienthood” and not the patient as a person and also psychiatrist as a “provider” and not as an individual.
Patienthood is born when a patient meets “the good enough” psychiatrist. Coming to see a psychiatrist is a “big step” in willingness to accept one’s helplessness in not being able to cope with the conflicting demands of life both within and without.
If the patient “feels” being held by the psychiatrist’s presence – it’s a good start. The way a “good enough “ psychiatrist is able to do that, is by giving an undivided attention to the patient. This kind of attention is not available outside a “loving relationship”. There is a “catch-22” here , because psychiatric illnesses attack the “ capacity to form loving intimate relationships “. This “capacity” is contingent upon the ability to accept one’s vulnerabilities to hurts and pain which is unavoidable in the struggle to develop intimacy. “A good enough” psychiatrist can at the very least provide with a “sample of this much needed relationship”to satisfy that need” to give some hope to the patient, that intimacy is possible.This simple explanation does run the risk of ridicule,by the likes of William Schofield, who writes in his critique of our profession “Psychotherapy- the purchase for friendship”, that, psychotherapist not trained as a specialist in therapeutic conversation, can fall unwittingly into the role of moral counselor or morale coach, and can be seduced into the chronic role of “best friend.
Let’s first define what’s the anatomy of a story – – it has a beginning- a middle and an end –
How about our life – we know the beginning- the middle is how our life is unfolding -(which one could know if one is able to stand outside the trappings of life) but the “end”- we won’t know – only the “others” would know that once we are gone.
Before I venture into the philosophy of this question I would like to tell few stories- which are really the lives of few persons I found entertaining and want to fictionalize a bit so as to make create a smooth flow.
The plan is to tell a story and go back to the question of our life’s story.
“Living an Oedipal fantasy”
Urvashi worked in my office. I have known her for last 22 years when I started my practice of psychiatry. I met her when I used to go to a church not that I am a Christian or religious at but or just to have some social interaction since I was marooned in this godforsaken Backwaters of Alabama.One could ask how did I endup there. The simple answer is that I was given a choice either to go back to my country of origin which was India or come to this underserved area and put in three years before I could get my green card. I wanted to explore the “underserved Alabama” because the underserved India was pretty familiar and mundane”.
I had just finished my residency in Psychiatry at an inner cityhospital in Brooklyn NY. The turn of the century- year 2000. My flight was supposed to be at 12 noon and I reached well within time but come to find out America’s day light saving had ended and “I was not informed” lol! Bottom line, I missed the flight and it happened to be April 1st. America had made a perfect April fool out of me!
I met Urvashi, few days after I landed in Birmingham,AL. She was a social worker and had just started working there. She was a member of the local Presbyterian church. One of my other colleaguealso went to the same church and invited me for the Sunday service. I first met her in the church. We hit it off well because she was interested in Eastern thought – influenced by Carl Gustav Jung. We often bumped into each other in the cafeteria and at times would exchange ideas. I was learning the southern culture and in the bargain I would share whatever little I knew about eastern philosophy.
She had just earned her graduate degree with a major in social work in-spite of being a single mother of a 5 years old daughter. She lived with her parents. Few months into our association, she met someone got married and moved out of her parental home. Her husband worked in construction and made good money. After three years of the commitment to the “underserved place” I moved to Atlanta,GAand lost touch with Urvashi.
Fast forward, 20yrs and our ways crossed again. We filled each other with some details of our lives in the interim. I had married during this time and we had three children. She had three children as well but was divorced from her husband and was dating someone. We met occasionally during the monthly grand rounds or sometimes over a cup of coffee. As the time went by our relationship evolved from acquaintance to more of a friendship.
Few days back, she sought me out,saying she wanted to discuss some pressing issue. That evening we met for a drink. She told me that her son is very angry with her because she is dating his friend. I knew her son was around 18yrs of age and was a senior in high school. I couldn’t help not ask her about this guy’s age. Lo and behold!he happens to be the same age as her son. Urvashi is around 35. She is in love with this guy- heads over heal. Uravshi’s parents are distraught and so are her friends. Of course, her son is outraged by this situation. Both his friend and he are still living under the same roof. This is just a very brief and very circumscribed view of her “life”.
If this were to be a “story” it would have an end but “her life” is still unfolding. One could only speculate an end of this affair or not. We are left wanting,because it doesn’t have an end whereas in a story there would be an end. This is the only difference.
We established how we can convert “anxiety” into “fear” by our “meditative awareness”
There are many ways to cultivate this. Let’s consider sports and meditation.
While playing a sport, whatever disharmony exist between mind and body becomes “amplified” and this amplification can help us see “how anxiety makes us miss the ball”. While playing tennis, I have noticed umpteen times ,that “when I am thinking about hitting a ball in “this” and not “that way”-in other words when I am “anxious about hitting it right -I always hit it wrong.Contrarily, if I simply “follow the ball”- and let my mind trust my body, I hit it right.
What I am trying to examine here, is how can we operationalize “hand to hand combat” to deal with anxiety in our day-to-day life.
The first and foremost tool we have is our awareness into how we feel. Anxiety is so “painful” that we want to get rid of it as soon as possible- at times we don’t even care about the heavy price we pay for these escapes – drugs, distractions, obsessions, or addictions.
What if we turn it around – rather than “numbing ourselves to this pain” we become aware of this “pain”.
Let’s try to do this exercise- next time we are plagued by anxiety -we try to find out how does it translate into the “body’s discomfort” – like pounding heart, sweaty palms, butterflies in the stomach and so on and the circular thoughts “like a snake chasing its own tail” or in other words “obsessive rumination”.
The “key word is awareness”.
The next step is “acceptance of this state of affairs – both mind’s and body’s without any fight or resistance” Just like in the martial art Judo they teach you to “accept the blow as if you were a soft pillow” – don’t be a rock when the blow of anxiety lands on you – become a pillow
To study a “ new antidepressant” , researchers have to conduct “animal studies”. Since, we are testing a drug which is supposed to lift depression- the question is “how to demonstrate its effectiveness in animals. Quandary is, that except for dogs, who perhaps because of “being man’s best friends” for eons , other creatures are not afflicted by this malady to the best of my knowledge. So the problem becomes of “inoculating them with the virus of depression”. This feat is accomplished by coming up what the scientists call an animal model. One such model is “learned helplessness”. What they do that they create a situation for the animal say a mouse where in it feels helpless and to conserve its energy, which is a biological advantage, it simply gives up. To explain more clearly they would put a mouse in a big container of water from which it cannot escape however hard it tries ,so it keeps swimming but after sometime it just floats realizing it’s futile to swim , thus conserving energy . A parallel human situation would be someone in a shipwreck swim for a little bit but finding the land is not reachable gives up swimming and just floats. Coming back to the animal model they repeat the experiment after injecting the animal, in this case a mouse with the new test chemical “purported-to be new antidepressant”. If the antidepressant is effective the animal would swim for a longer time before giving up. So what an anti-depressant is doing is “buying time” and hoping help is on the way to address what is causing depression -myriad of causes, ranging from socioeconomic to psychological ,unfolding within the genetic makeup. More of this next time, as for now,I want to focus on how could one address this learned helplessness by other means say for example exercise and biofeedback. One of the common symptoms of depression is that a person does not have much energy left and he’s lethargic. I will start off with exercise since that’s easy to understand and to practice. There are twofold effects of exercise -one is causing neuro-chemical changes and the other is an indirect communication to the mind that one is not helpless. The helplessness in a “shipwreck” situation is a biological advantage but otherwise it’s like “ barking at the wrong tree” The mind may start “ retuning to this “normal”level of activity and may in turn feel “better”. In other words if body sends the message “I am not giving up” mind recalibrate into thinking “the situation doesn’t demand “giving up” or in other words be in the “helpless mode”. The neurochemical changes caused by exercise also mitigate depression.
Of course if it doesn’t work the medication’s are available to break this vicious cycle of depression.
I admit that it’s little “tacky” to view life vis a vis algorithms but it’s my effort to take into cognizance “the ever evolving technology” and the impact it’s having on our life. In “non algorithmic” life the “dictates of religion” the challenges posed by nature determined how we lived. However, nature having been contained in a small conclave and the “religion” to the places of worship we need to come up with our own “unique dictates sans algorithms to feel connected to “what life is about”. For the starter- let’s see how the simple algorithms are generated? Since, I have no background in programming I could share only a broad sweeping statement that it involves giving the computer “ binary instructions” ( that’s the only language computer understands – “0”s and “1”s- a zillion permutations and combinations) – around a problem and then instructions around the “ answers to the problem” computer comes up with. It’s very boring and tedious job for the computer but it doesn’t get bored or frustrated with the wrong answers. To this I want to add a little anecdote or it may even be a legend about Thomas Edison . As the story goes – he failed 600 times with his experiment to make a “light bulb” and everyone counseled him to give up this “expensive” mission. But his response was “ hey those failed experiments tell me that those 600 ways of dealing with the problem were wrong and we should be very close to “the right” answer since there could be only limited solutions to a problem. Believe me or not,this is how the algorithms are generated – these machines are generating random solutions hoping to “slay the right one” not unlike the hope, that there exist a possibility-doesn’t matter how small -of writing a work of Shakespeare if a bunch of monkeys are given typewriters who could f* their brain out punching the keys zillion of times. But… we are not monkeys and we don’t have zillions of failed strokes available to us and furthermore we all are not striving to be Shakespeare. So, rule number one -before we start on a path of failures which, if we have enough time ,but we don’t since we all are mortals, is to really know who we are and what and why we want something. This comes forth only if we become “aware” It’s the awareness which comes when we “meditate” on our desires, fears, fantasies, and so on. All of this is inside of us. We are not yet talking about outside of us- which is the world of science, money, politics, power and so on. In my next blog, like a monkey on the typewriter NOT!, I hope to come up with the next rule.
Lorazepam belongs to a group of medications which are called benzodiazepines. The first one ever to be invented was Librium more than 50 years back soon followed by Valium. It was just like any other new drug was promoted as “ A wonder drug” i’m sure it was those people who are truly truly anxious they were using alcohol or barbiturates would much more side effects and toxicity unlike benzodiazepines it was safer and more effective for anxiety. Over the years they have added many benzodiazepines. Let’s try to understand how are they acting in our body. They act through GABA which is primarily a neurotransmitter in our brain who’s function is to inhibit the nervous excitement and hence usefulness in anxiety and many other conditions were such dampening of excitement is required such as in epilepsy muscle spasm and so on If you’re taking such medications it would be useful for you to understand what are the pros and cons There is a lot of information available on the Internet so I am not going to go into that My main purpose this post is to help you understand those effects on your mind which you may not like in the long run such as loss of memory disordered sleep especially REM sleep which, is very vital for our brain,to be able to process our experiences. If you want to use these medications in a smart way the best bet would be use them for very short duration, and buy time,to be able to either get help with your anxiety through other medications or making changes in your living,in dealing with the underlying issues which might be causing these anxieties. The public perception,as well as the authorities,take on these medications oscillates like a pendulum ,wherein, initially these were good drugs and now they are bad drugs. Because of this skewed
perception some of the patients really need these medications suffer. I need to stress that there are no good drugs or bad drugs and that would hammer home if you try to remember all medications in high doses are poisons and some of the poisons in small doses could be medications. Also if someone tells you that this particular medication doesn’t have any side effects I would urge you not to take it because probably it’s not a medicine at all In nutshell all medications do have side effects so the question is to weigh the desired effects with the undesired effects and if you find the desired effects outweigh the undesired effect that’s on medication you should take. Different individuals would have different expectations from a medication and if their expectations are not being met by that particular medication‘s and the undesired effects are unacceptable that is not the medication for that particular individual. Sometime it is difficult to figure out which one particular medication would work for who even though those medications may be similar and that’s where the genetic testing for how your body processes these medication‘s could be useful.
Applying philosophical knowledge to get more out of life involves integrating philosophical principles and ideas into your daily practices and mindset. Here are some practical ways to do so:
Self-Reflection: Start by engaging in regular self-reflection. Philosophers often emphasize the importance of knowing oneself. Ask questions like: What are my values and beliefs? What do I consider meaningful and fulfilling in life? Reflecting on these questions can help you align your actions and choices with your core principles.
Set Meaningful Goals: Use philosophical insights to guide your goal-setting. Consider what you’ve learned about what truly matters in life and set goals that align with your values and aspirations. Avoid pursuing goals solely for external validation or societal expectations.
Practice Mindfulness: Philosophical ideas from schools like Stoicism and Buddhism promote mindfulness and being present in the moment. Practicing mindfulness can help you appreciate the here and now, reduce stress, and increase your overall well-being.
Ethical Decision-Making: When faced with moral dilemmas or challenging decisions, draw upon ethical theories and principles you’ve learned. Think deeply about the consequences of your actions and strive to make choices that are ethically sound and in line with your values.
Critical Thinking: Apply critical thinking skills to evaluate information, arguments, and beliefs. Don’t accept things at face value; instead, question assumptions and seek evidence. This will lead to more informed decision-making and a deeper understanding of the world.
Embrace Uncertainty: Philosophy often grapples with uncertainty and the limits of knowledge. Learn to be comfortable with ambiguity and uncertainty in life. Instead of seeking absolute certainty, focus on making informed and reasoned judgments.
Engage in Dialogue: Engage in meaningful conversations with others. Philosophy often involves dialogue and debate. Engaging in open, respectful discussions with others can help you refine your own beliefs, gain new perspectives, and deepen your understanding of different viewpoints.
Read and Learn: Continuously engage with philosophical literature and ideas. Reading works by philosophers can provide you with valuable insights and new perspectives on various aspects of life. Consider joining a philosophy club or taking online courses to further your philosophical knowledge.
Live Authentically: Existentialist philosophy, for example, emphasizes the importance of living authentically and being true to oneself. Strive to live a life that reflects your true self and values, rather than conforming to societal expectations.
Cultivate Virtues: Consider adopting virtues that resonate with you. Virtue ethics, like Aristotle’s, encourages the cultivation of virtues like courage, wisdom, and compassion. Practicing these virtues can lead to a more meaningful and fulfilling life.
Appreciate Beauty and Art: Explore aesthetics and the philosophy of art. Take time to appreciate the beauty in the world, whether it’s through nature, music, visual arts, or literature. Philosophical aesthetics can deepen your appreciation of the arts.
Embrace Socratic Wisdom: Embrace the idea that wisdom begins with recognizing your own ignorance. Be open to learning from others and admit when you don’t have all the answers. This humility can lead to personal growth and a more enriched life.
Remember that applying philosophical knowledge to your life is an ongoing process. It involves continuous learning, self-examination, and the willingness to adapt and refine your beliefs and practices as you gain new insights. Philosophy can serve as a valuable guide to help you lead a more meaningful and fulfilling life by aligning your actions with your deepest values and aspirations.
We all have stressors in our lives, but some people seem to be more resilient than others when it comes to managing stress. They are often referred to as “the unbreakables.” While stress is a natural part of life, excessive or prolonged stress can have a negative impact on our physical and mental health. So, what makes some people more resistant to stress than others? In this post, we will explore the personality traits that help people cope with stress and manage it effectively. From self-awareness and optimism to adaptability and problem-solving skills, we will delve into the qualities that make “the unbreakables” so resilient in the face of adversity. Understanding these traits can help us all become more resilient and better equipped to handle life’s challenges.
1. Introduction to stress and resilience
Stress is a common occurrence in our daily lives. It is often caused by different events, circumstances, or conditions that we encounter as we go through our day-to-day activities. While some people may easily crumble under pressure, others tend to be more resilient and can withstand stress without breaking down.
The concept of resilience has become increasingly popular in recent times, as people continue to seek ways to cope with the effects of stress. Resilience can be defined as the ability to adapt to difficult situations, overcome challenges, and bounce back from adversity. It is, in essence, the ability to remain strong in the face of adversity and to continue moving forward, despite the obstacles.
In this article, we will explore the personality traits that make people resistant to stress. We will delve into the qualities that enable some individuals to cope with stressful situations, while others struggle to overcome them. We will also examine the various strategies that people can use to build their resilience, and to become more adept at handling stress. By the end of this article, you will have a better understanding of the factors that contribute to resilience, and how you can cultivate these traits in your own life.
2. Overview of personality traits that contribute to resilience
Resilience is the ability to cope and adapt to stress, trauma, or adversity. While some people may be naturally more resilient than others, resilience is also a trait that can be developed and strengthened over time. There are several personality traits that contribute to resilience, and understanding them can be helpful in building and maintaining resilience. One such trait is optimism. Optimistic people tend to have a positive outlook on life, and are able to maintain hope even in difficult situations. They are more likely to view setbacks as temporary and are able to focus on finding solutions to problems. Another important trait is self-efficacy, which is a belief in one’s ability to accomplish tasks and overcome challenges. People with high levels of self-efficacy are more likely to take on challenging tasks, and are less likely to give up when faced with obstacles. A third important trait is adaptability. Resilient people are able to adapt to changing circumstances, and are able to find new ways to cope with stress and adversity. They are able to adjust their goals and expectations as needed, and are open to new experiences and perspectives. Finally, supportive relationships are also crucial for building resilience. Having a strong support system can provide emotional and practical assistance during difficult times, and can help people to maintain a sense of connection and belonging. By cultivating these traits and building supportive relationships, people can become more resilient and better equipped to handle stress and adversity.
3. The role of optimism in stress resilience
Optimism plays a vital role in stress resilience. People who are optimistic have a positive outlook towards life and are better equipped to handle stress. They view challenges as opportunities for growth and are more likely to bounce back from setbacks. Optimistic people tend to have a greater sense of control over their lives, which in turn helps them to manage stress better. Research has shown that optimistic people have lower levels of cortisol, the hormone associated with stress, in their body. This means that they are less likely to suffer from stress-related health issues such as high blood pressure, heart disease, and depression. Optimism can be cultivated through various techniques such as mindfulness, positive self-talk, and practicing gratitude. By focusing on the positive aspects of their lives, individuals can develop a more optimistic outlook and increase their resilience to stress. It’s important to note that being optimistic doesn’t mean ignoring problems or challenges. Rather, it means approaching them with a positive attitude and a belief that they can be overcome. By adopting an optimistic mindset, individuals can become “unbreakable” in the face of stress and adversity.
4. The importance of self-efficacy in stress resilience
Self-efficacy is a psychological term that refers to an individual’s belief in their ability to achieve their goals, manage their stress, and cope with difficult situations. People who possess high levels of self-efficacy are often more resilient to stress, as they have a more positive outlook and are better equipped to deal with challenges.
Research has shown that individuals with high levels of self-efficacy are more likely to approach stressors as challenges rather than threats, which can help to reduce the negative impact of stress on their mental and physical health. They are also more likely to engage in problem-solving behaviors and seek support when faced with difficult situations.
Building self-efficacy is an important part of stress resilience, and there are a number of ways to do this. Setting achievable goals and working towards them, practicing mindfulness and self-reflection, and developing a positive self-talk can all help to boost self-efficacy and increase resilience to stress.
It’s important to note that self-efficacy is not a fixed trait, and can be developed and strengthened over time. By building our belief in our own ability to manage stress and overcome challenges, we can become more resilient and better equipped to handle the demands of daily life.
5. How emotional intelligence contributes to stress resilience
Emotional intelligence (EI) refers to how well an individual can identify, understand, and manage their own emotions and the emotions of others. Those with high levels of EI have been found to be more resilient to stress in general, including in the workplace. Why is this the case? People with high EI are often better equipped to handle difficult situations and manage their emotions in a healthy way. They are more likely to have strong relationships with others and are able to communicate effectively, leading to less conflict and stress in their personal and professional lives. In addition, individuals with high EI are often more adaptable and flexible in the face of change, which can also help them to cope with stressful situations. They are able to recognize and regulate their own emotional responses, which can prevent them from becoming overwhelmed or overly reactive in high-pressure situations. Overall, developing emotional intelligence can be a powerful tool in building stress resilience. By learning to manage emotions effectively, individuals may be able to better handle the challenges that life throws at them and maintain a sense of calm and balance even in the midst of stress.
6. The impact of social support and connectedness on resilience
One of the most important factors that contribute to resilience is social support and connectedness. Humans are social beings and having supportive relationships can help us overcome stress and adversity. When we face difficult situations, having someone to talk to and share our feelings with can make all the difference.
Studies have shown that people who have strong social support networks are more resilient to stress and are better able to cope with challenges. Social support can come from family, friends, colleagues, or even online communities. It’s not just about having people around you, but also the quality of those relationships. Being able to confide in someone, feeling understood and valued, and having a sense of belonging can all promote resilience.
Additionally, social support doesn’t just help us cope with stress, but it can also help us avoid it in the first place. When we have positive relationships, we are less likely to experience loneliness, depression, or anxiety, which are all risk factors for stress.
So, if you want to be more resilient to stress, focus on building and maintaining positive relationships. Seek out people who are supportive, caring, and positive influences in your life. And remember, it’s not just about receiving support, but also giving it. Being there for others can also be a powerful way of promoting your own resilience.
7. The significance of adaptability and flexibility in stress resilience
Adaptability and flexibility are key personality traits that contribute significantly to stress resilience. Stressful situations can come in many different forms and often require individuals to adjust their behavior, thoughts, and emotions to effectively handle these situations. Those who possess higher levels of adaptability and flexibility are better equipped to handle unexpected changes and challenges that come their way.
These individuals are typically comfortable with uncertainty and are able to quickly adjust to new situations. They possess a growth mindset, which means they believe that they can learn and grow from experiences, even if they are difficult. This allows them to approach stressful situations with a more positive attitude, viewing them as opportunities for growth and development.
Adaptable and flexible individuals also tend to have strong problem-solving skills. They are able to think creatively, consider multiple options, and come up with effective solutions to challenges. This problem-solving ability helps them to feel more in control of stressful situations, reducing feelings of helplessness or overwhelm.
Overall, the significance of adaptability and flexibility in stress resilience cannot be overstated. These traits can be developed and strengthened through practice and intentional effort. By cultivating adaptability and flexibility, individuals can become more resilient in the face of stress and better able to handle the challenges that come their way.
8. Resilience and the power of positive thinking
Resilience is one of the most important personality traits that make people resistant to stress. It is the ability to bounce back from difficult situations or setbacks. Resilient people possess a unique mindset that enables them to stay focused, positive and motivated even in the most challenging circumstances. One major aspect of this mindset is the power of positive thinking. Resilient people tend to have an optimistic outlook on life, and they choose to focus on the positive aspects of any given situation. They believe that things will always work out in the long run, and they use setbacks as an opportunity to learn and grow. Research suggests that positive thinking can have a significant impact on our mental and physical health. It can reduce stress levels, boost our immune system, and improve our overall wellbeing. The power of positive thinking is not just a myth, but a scientifically proven approach to building resilience and coping with stress. So, how can we cultivate a more positive outlook on life? One way is by practicing gratitude. Studies have shown that people who regularly practice gratitude tend to be more resilient and less prone to stress. By focusing on the things we are grateful for, we shift our attention away from negative thoughts and emotions. Another way to build resilience is by developing a growth mindset. This involves seeing challenges as an opportunity to learn and grow, rather than as a threat. By embracing a growth mindset, we can learn from our mistakes and setbacks and use them as fuel for personal and professional development. In conclusion, resilience and the power of positive thinking are essential components of our emotional and mental wellbeing. By cultivating these traits, we can become more resistant to stress and better equipped to deal with life’s challenges.
9. Building resilience through mindfulness and other practices
Building resilience is essential in life, especially in today’s world where stress is all around us. Mindfulness is a great way to build resilience, as it helps us to become more aware of our thoughts and emotions, and to develop a sense of calm and inner peace. Mindfulness can involve various practices, such as meditation, yoga, and breathing exercises. These practices help to calm the mind and reduce stress levels, allowing us to become more resilient when faced with challenging situations. Other practices that can help to build resilience include exercise, getting enough sleep, and eating a healthy diet. Exercise releases endorphins, which are natural mood elevators, and promotes better sleep. Eating a healthy diet can also improve mood and energy levels, helping us to feel more resilient. In addition to these practices, it’s important to cultivate a positive mindset. This means focusing on the positive aspects of life, and developing a sense of gratitude for the things we have. By focusing on the good, we can build a more positive outlook, which can help us to be more resilient when things get tough. Overall, building resilience is about developing a set of practices that help us to cope with stress and challenges. By practicing mindfulness, exercise, healthy eating, and cultivating a positive mindset, we can become more resilient and better able to handle whatever life throws our way.
10. Conclusion and encouragement to develop resilience in your own life
In conclusion, it’s important to understand that resilience is not something that you are born with, but rather something that you can develop and improve over time. People who are considered “unbreakable” have developed resilience through their experiences, mindset, and behaviors. They have learned to adapt to stressful situations, bounce back from setbacks, and remain focused on their goals despite the challenges they face.
If you want to develop resilience in your own life, it’s important to start by adopting a growth mindset. This means that you view challenges as opportunities to learn and grow, rather than as obstacles that hold you back. You can also develop resilience by building a strong support network of friends, family, and colleagues who you can turn to in times of stress.
In addition, taking care of your physical, emotional, and mental health is crucial for building resilience. This means getting enough sleep, exercise, and healthy nutrition, as well as practicing stress-reducing techniques like mindfulness or meditation.
Remember, resilience is a skill that can be developed with practice and time. It’s not about being “unbreakable” or never experiencing stress, but rather about learning to bounce back from adversity and thrive in the face of challenges. So, take steps to develop your resilience today and become the best version of yourself!
We hope you enjoyed our article exploring the personality traits that make people resistant to stress. Stress is a part of life and can have a significant impact on our health and well-being. By studying the unbreakables and the traits that make them resistant to stress, we can learn valuable lessons that we can apply to our own lives. We hope that you have found these insights helpful and that they will enable you to lead a more stress-free life. Until next time, take care of yourself and your mental health!
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects both children and adults. It is characterized by a persistent pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that interferes with daily functioning and development. ADHD is a complex condition that can be challenging to diagnose and manage, and there is often debate about whether children grow out of it or not.
The exact cause of ADHD is still unknown, but studies suggest that genetics, brain structure, and environmental factors may play a role in its development. ADHD affects an estimated 6-9% of school-aged children worldwide, with boys being diagnosed more often than girls. Symptoms of ADHD can vary in severity and can include difficulty paying attention, excessive activity, impulsivity, forgetfulness, and poor organization.
One of the most common debates surrounding ADHD is whether children grow out of it or not. While some children may see a decrease in symptoms as they age, many individuals with ADHD continue to experience symptoms throughout their lifetime. Research suggests that between 30-60% of children with ADHD continue to struggle with symptoms as adults, and up to 70% of adults with ADHD were diagnosed in childhood.
Early diagnosis and treatment of ADHD are essential in managing symptoms and improving long-term outcomes. Computerized testing has become a useful tool in diagnosing ADHD, as it can provide objective measures of attention and behavior. These tests use specialized software to assess cognitive abilities, such as attention, memory, and response time. The results of these tests can provide valuable insights into a patient’s condition and can help guide treatment decisions.
Medication is often used in the treatment of ADHD and can be effective in managing symptoms. Stimulant medications, such as Ritalin and Adderall, are the most commonly prescribedmedications for ADHD but nowadays non-stimulants such as Strattera are being increasingly used as well. These medications work by increasing the levels of dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain, which can improve attention, focus, and impulse control. While medication can be beneficial for many individuals with ADHD, it is not a cure, and it may not work for everyone. Other treatment options, such as behavioral therapy and lifestyle changes, may also be recommended.
In conclusion, ADHD is a complex condition that can have a significant impact on daily functioning and development. While some individuals may see a decrease in symptoms as they age, many people with ADHD continue to struggle with symptoms throughout their lifetime. Early diagnosis and treatment are essential in managing symptoms and improving long-term outcomes. Computerized testing such as Continuous Performance Test (CPT)can provide some objectivity and act as a tool to monitor treatment response. It can very well provide insights into a patient’s condition, while medication and other treatment options can help manage symptoms and improve overall functioning.
The decision to pay for therapy versus relying solely on low-cost medications to alleviate symptoms is a complex one. While medications can be effective in reducing symptoms, they may not address underlying issues or provide the same long-term benefits as therapy. Here are some reasons why paying for therapy can be a worthwhile investment, even if the outcome is not always predictable.
Addressing root causes: Medications may treat symptoms, but they do not necessarily address the underlying causes of those symptoms. Therapy can help individuals explore and understand the root causes of their issues, and develop strategies to manage and overcome them. This can lead to long-term improvements in mental health and well-being.
Improved coping skills: Therapy can help individuals develop coping skills and resilience that can be applied in a variety of situations. This can help individuals better manage stress, anxiety, and other challenges they may face in the future.
Personal growth: Therapy can be a tool for personal growth and self-discovery. It can help individuals better understand themselves, their values, and their goals, and make positive changes in their lives.
Building a supportive relationship: Therapy can provide a supportive and non-judgmental relationship that can be difficult to find in other areas of life. This can be especially important for individuals who may not have a strong support system in their personal lives.
Improved overall health: Mental health is closely linked to physical health, and therapy can help individuals improve their overall well-being. By addressing mental health concerns, individuals may also see improvements in physical health, such as reduced stress levels and better sleep.
While the outcome of therapy is not always predictable, it is important to remember that mental health is an ongoing journey, and progress may not always be linear. In addition, the effectiveness of low-cost medications may vary depending on the individual and the severity of their symptoms. Ultimately, the decision to pay for therapy should be based on an individual’s specific needs and circumstances, and should be made in consultation with a mental health professional.
Antipsychotic medications are commonly used to treat various mental health conditions, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depressive disorder with psychotic features. While these medications can be effective in managing symptoms, they can also cause side effects, including long-term effects such as tremors and tardive dyskinesia (TD). It’s important to be aware of these potential side effects and to talk to your healthcare provider if you have any concerns.
Tremors are a common side effect of antipsychotic medications, and they typically involve shaking or trembling in the hands, arms, legs, or other parts of the body. These tremors can be mild or severe and may worsen over time. If you experience tremors while taking an antipsychotic medication, it’s important to let your healthcare provider know, as they may be able to adjust your medication or recommend other treatments to help manage this side effect.
Tardive dyskinesia (TD) is another potential long-term side effect of antipsychotic medications. TD is a condition that causes involuntary movements, such as twitching or jerking, in the face, tongue, and other parts of the body. TD can develop after long-term use of antipsychotic medications and can be difficult to treat. It’s important to be aware of the signs of TD and to talk to your healthcare provider if you notice any unusual movements or behaviors.
Here are some additional tips for managing the long-term side effects of antipsychotic medications:
Attend regular check-ups with your healthcare provider: Your healthcare provider may want to monitor your medication levels and check for any signs of side effects, including tremors or TD. Attend regular check-ups and let your healthcare provider know if you have any concerns.
Consider changing your medication: If you are experiencing significant side effects from your medication, your healthcare provider may recommend switching to a different antipsychotic medication or adjusting your dosage. Be sure to discuss any changes to your medication with your healthcare provider before making any adjustments.
Practice stress-reduction techniques: Stress can exacerbate tremors and other side effects, so it’s important to practice stress-reduction techniques, such as deep breathing, meditation, or yoga. These techniques can help to reduce anxiety and promote relaxation, which can help to manage your symptoms.
Eat a healthy diet: A healthy diet can help to promote overall health and may also help to manage the side effects of antipsychotic medications. Be sure to eat a well-balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein.
Get enough sleep: Getting enough sleep is important for managing mental health conditions and may also help to reduce the risk of side effects from antipsychotic medications. Aim to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep each night and practice good sleep hygiene, such as avoiding electronic devices before bedtime and keeping your bedroom dark and quiet.
By being aware of the potential long-term side effects of antipsychotic medications and working closely with your healthcare provider, you can effectively manage your symptoms and promote overall health and well-being.
Life is a journey full of ups and downs, twists and turns, and unexpected challenges. For some, these challenges can be overwhelming, leading to a sense of despair and hopelessness. But it is important to remember that even in the darkest moments, there is always the possibility of finding a way out and starting anew. As the French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre once said, “Life begins on the other side of despair.”
Despair can take many forms, whether it be the loss of a loved one, the failure of a dream, or the feeling of being trapped in a difficult situation. It is a complex emotion that can be overwhelming and all-consuming, leaving one feeling helpless and alone. It can be difficult to see a way forward when everything seems bleak, but it is important to remember that despair is not the end of the road.
In fact, many people who have experienced profound despair have gone on to live meaningful and fulfilling lives. They have found a way to overcome their struggles and find a sense of purpose and joy in life. This is not to say that the journey is easy, but rather that it is possible.
One way to begin the process of moving beyond despair is to seek support from others. This can be through therapy, support groups, or simply reaching out to friends and family. It can be difficult to open up and share one’s struggles with others, but it is often a necessary step towards healing.
Another important aspect of moving beyond despair is to focus on self-care. This can include things like exercise, healthy eating, and practicing mindfulness and meditation. Taking care of one’s physical and emotional well-being is essential in order to build resilience and find the strength to move forward.
Finally, it is important to remember that life is full of opportunities for growth and change. Even when things seem impossible, there is always the possibility of finding a new path and discovering new passions and interests. By embracing the unknown and being open to new experiences, one can begin to see the beauty and potential of life on the other side of despair.
In conclusion, while despair can be a difficult and overwhelming emotion, it is not the end of the road. By seeking support, practicing self-care, and embracing the unknown, one can begin to move beyond despair and discover the beauty and potential of life on the other side.
When people think of mental health benefits, they typically think of exercise. In our society, exercise has become a form of treatment for many people. It’s not uncommon for people to spend hours in the gym, on the treadmill, and on the elliptical in order to build up their mental health. But what about sports? Sports have been proven to help people with mental health as well. Studies have shown that sports help with anxiety, depression, and cognitive disorders. In this article, I’ll be discussing the benefits of playing sports versus the benefits of exercise.
1. Mental health benefits of exercise vs sports
Many people have the misconception that exercise is the only way to improve their mental health. However, there are other ways to improve their mental health, one of which is participating in sports. There are many mental health benefits to playing sports that are not seen in exercise, such as stress reduction, improved brain health, and better mood. Sports can also provide a moment of peace in the midst of a busy day. When you’re playing sports, you’re taking your mind off of the stresses of life and focusing on the game. Sports can also provide social support and a sense of community. It is important to note that, while exercise can also provide these benefits, it is not as beneficial.
2. Benefits of playing sports
Sports provide many mental health benefits that can help with anxiety and depression. They can also help with stress. In general, sports can provide a sense of belonging and a sense of accomplishment. They also help people to feel in control and in touch with themselves. If a person is struggling with mental health, they might find that sports can be a source of relief and distraction.
In conclusion, I think that all types of exercise are beneficial to a person. However, I think that sports can have a more positive impact on your mental health than other types of exercise. Sports can help people to relieve stress, feel more self-confident, and improve self-esteem.
Mental health benefits of playing sports versus the benefits of exercise There are a lot of benefits to playing sports. One of the main ones is the release of endorphins. This is a hormone that helps to calm you down and makes you feel happy. Exercise on the other hand has a lot of physical benefits. These include burning calories and fat, improving your cardiovascular health, and strengthening your bones. Both exercise and playing sports have benefits. It is just a matter of what you prioritize. If you want to prioritize mental health, then playing sports is the way to go. If you want to prioritize physical health, then exercise is the way to go.
Being mentally healthy means having a positive sense of well-being, the ability to manage and cope with stress and challenges, and the capacity to engage in fulfilling relationships and activities. It involves having a balanced emotional and psychological state, and being able to think clearly and make rational decisions.
Mental health is not just the absence of mental illness or psychological distress, but rather a state of overall well-being that allows individuals to live a meaningful and productive life. It includes positive feelings such as happiness, contentment, and satisfaction with life, as well as the ability to manage negative emotions such as sadness, anxiety, and anger.
Good mental health also involves having a sense of purpose and meaning in life, feeling connected to others, and being able to adapt to changes and overcome challenges. It is a key component of overall health and well-being, and is essential for leading a fulfilling and satisfying life.
There are many things that we can do to promote and maintain good mental health. Here are a few examples:
Practice good self-care: This includes eating a healthy diet, getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, and avoiding unhealthy habits like excessive alcohol or drug use.
Build positive relationships: Make an effort to connect with friends, family, and other supportive people in your life. Seek out new social connections and join groups or clubs that align with your interests.
Manage stress: Learn and practice stress-reduction techniques like deep breathing, meditation, or yoga. Take breaks and prioritize rest when needed.
Seek professional help when needed: Don’t hesitate to reach out to a mental health professional if you are struggling with mental health issues. They can help provide support and guidance to help you manage your symptoms and improve your overall well-being.
Engage in activities that bring you joy: Whether it’s a hobby or a creative pursuit, taking time to engage in activities that you enjoy can help reduce stress, boost mood, and promote overall well-being.
Practice gratitude: Take time each day to reflect on what you are thankful for, which can help shift your mindset to focus on the positive aspects of life.
Remember that mental health is an ongoing journey and it’s important to prioritize self-care and seek support when needed.
Dealing with irrational fears can be a challenging task, but it is essential to overcome them in order to live a healthy and fulfilling life. Irrational fears are fears that are not based on any rational or logical reason, and they can cause a great deal of anxiety and stress. These fears can be anything from fear of heights, fear of animals, fear of social situations, fear of flying, or any other type of fear that is not based on any real danger. In this essay, I will discuss some strategies that can be helpful in dealing with irrational fears.
The first step in dealing with irrational fears is to acknowledge that they are irrational. It is important to understand that these fears are not based on any real danger and that they are only in our minds. Once we acknowledge that our fears are irrational, we can start to work on overcoming them.
The next step is to face our fears. This means that we need to expose ourselves to the things that we fear in a safe and controlled environment. For example, if we have a fear of heights, we can start by standing on a ladder or going up to a high floor in a building. As we become more comfortable with these small steps, we can gradually increase the level of exposure until we are able to face our fear without experiencing extreme anxiety.
Another strategy that can be helpful in dealing with irrational fears is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). This type of therapy focuses on changing the negative thought patterns that are associated with our fears. The goal of CBT is to identify and challenge the negative thoughts that are contributing to our fears and replace them with more positive and realistic thoughts.
Relaxation techniques can also be helpful in dealing with irrational fears. These techniques, such as deep breathing exercises, meditation, or yoga, can help to reduce anxiety and promote a sense of calmness. When we are in a relaxed state, we are better able to cope with our fears and approach them with a clearer mind.
Lastly, it is important to seek support from others. This can include talking to friends or family members about our fears or seeking professional help from a therapist or counselor. It is important to remember that we are not alone in our fears and that there are people who can help us overcome them.
In conclusion, dealing with irrational fears can be a challenging task, but it is essential to overcome them in order to live a healthy and fulfilling life. By acknowledging that our fears are irrational, facing them, using cognitive-behavioral therapy, practicing relaxation techniques, and seeking support from others, we can work towards overcoming our fears and living a more fulfilling life.