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Continuing Education Resources

Online Newsletter Committed to Excellence in the Fields of Mental Health, Addiction, Counseling, Social Work, and Nursing

Learn to Surf

Nicole Hiltibran February 23, 2016 mental health

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Adaptation is a key principle in surviving and thriving in our world.  Adaptations is defined as “The action or process of adapting or being adapted, ‘the adaptation of teaching strategy to meet students’ needs” and “a change or the process of change by which an organism or species becomes better suited to its environment. ‘living in groups is an adaptation that increases the efficiency of hunting'” Synonyms include alteration, modification, redesign,remodeling, revamping, reworking,reconstruction, conversion, adjustment, acclimatization, acclimation,accommodations, habituation,acculturation, assimilation, and integration.

What does resilience and adaptation mean to you? It’s far more than a biological process which includes emotional and psychological adaptation.  The formation of our psychological defenses formed early in life are a clear example of this. We need our defenses to protect us from harmful psychological elements experienced in life. Too often, life’s circumstances and difficulties are impossible to control. We can either adapt and respond to this concept or become hypervigilant.

So does this leave us helpful and out of control? Not at all. It may be helpful to review the things in life that we can control such as many of our daily activities (eg when we eat, what we eat, task completion) in order to remind ourselves that we do have some control and management over our lives. However, many of life’s difficult circumstances including the death of a loved one, disease/illness, and crime are simply beyond our control.  We can do our best to respond to these events in an emotionally healthy way but we cannot control them. So let’s all learn to surf and adapt to the change which is inevitable throughout our lifetimes.

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