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Resilience is the ability to cope withflexibility limit situations, overcome them and take advantage of this experience to grow and develop on a personal level.
Thus, at first glance, it does not seem easy at all, but after meeting hundreds of mothers, fathers and families with disabled children, I think they can already be recognized for this: resilient families.
Many of them have passed (and continue to pass) throughvery difficult moments: to receive the news that your child has a strange Syndrome or a brain injury, long hospitalizations, medical tests, sleepless nights due to the worry of what “is going to happen” in the future ... but as difficult as it may seem, there you are: following with their lives, their jobs, their other children. Celebrating their big and small advances, sharing with other families, laughing and having fun,enjoying every second.
How do they do that? - Many mothers and fathers with very young children ask me - Do you reallyyou can become happy? Will I ever get to smile like them? I think the key is to cultivate resilience, as they often do unconsciously.
First of all, we must bear in mind that resilience is something that we can develop throughout our lives and it is important to see what aspects can help us:
1- Be aware that all people have capacities and limitations.
We may think: "I am not going to be able to face this" but we are. So the first step consists of certain "self-knowledge”, Recognizing our limitations and capabilities.
It's about cultivating apositive view of oneself, trusting in our ability to solve problems.
2- Be able to have a broad vision of reality
Sometimes a traumatic event can "blur" our vision of reality and it seems to us that "everything" is going wrong. This is a normal reaction at first, but little by little, we should move towards amore neutral place, being able to recognize everything that does work around us.
3- Recognize that we cannot control everything
In life there are situations thatare beyond our control: the injury our son has, the treatments that exist… stopping resisting that can help us accept reality as it is.
4- Live in the present
Focusing on day to day is one of the most important strategies, it helps us to remove the anguish that thinking about the future generates.
We cannot know for sure what will happen tomorrow, all we have is today, thus, always remembering that our child will be tomorrow depending on what we do today.
5- Keep a positive perspective
Resilient families have an optimistic outlook on life, which opens the possibility for good things to happen, to have hope. It is about visualizing more what we want, instead of worrying about whatwe fear.
Acknowledging difficult situations and talking about how you feel about them is very important. So is sharing and celebrating joys and achievements.
Do not pretend that "nothing is wrong" or that "everything is fine" when it is not. If we don't show how wesorry we really miss the opportunity to get the support we need.
It is importantto imply in this type of communication to all members of the family: parents, siblings, grandparents ...
7- Flexibility and stability
Resilient families have aflexible structure that they can modify to face the needs and challenges that may appear: work schedules are modified, roles are redistributed in the couple, grandparents are asked for help ... although it may not seem like it, this flexibility helps a lot toface the crisis.
8- Ask for and accept help
Accepting help and support from those who care about us helps strengthen our ability toRecovery. It also gives us the opportunity to enrich ourselves with what others can contribute to us with their help.
9- Have a good support network
Faced with a difficult situation, it is very important to have a environment that surrounds us and make us feel that “we are not alone”.
10- Manage time
Another important key is managing time, distinguishing between what is urgent or important. Now we will givepriority to certain things that perhaps previously went unnoticed: a quiet time, a good rest, seeing our son direct his gaze or take his first step… good! We are adjusting.
Resilient families with children with disabilities distinguish themselves from the rest because they are able to recognize everything they have learned along the way, despite the difficult moments.
You can read more articles similar to 10 steps to increase your resilience if you have a child with a disability, in the category of Mental Disorders on site.