Older woman listening to music on earphones, eyes closed

From Sharp Health News, a publication of Sharp HealthCare

When faced with an emotionally challenging situation, many of us respond in one of two ways: We either fall apart and come unglued, or “toughen up” and avoid the situation altogether.

Emotional resilience takes a different approach and refers to a person’s ability to adapt to stressful situations or crises. Without it, we have a hard time coping with stress and life changes — both major and minor.

Six Tips for Becoming More Emotionally Resilient:

  1. Start small. Starting with smaller emotional issues can help you build skills and develop resiliency for the bigger ones.
  2. See emotions as part of the solution rather than part of the problem. Emotions are an amazing part of our life — make friends with them.
  3. Separate the emotional experience from the cause that triggered it. Focusing on the reason for the emotion often re-triggers the reaction.
  4. Notice the wave-like pattern of emotional energy. Emotions rise, plateau and pass — and naturally resolve if not re-triggered.
  5. Move the body. Movement that alternates between the right side and left side of the body, such as walking, can be especially beneficial.
  6. Act or let it go. Once the emotion has settled, take action. If there is no action to take, let the energy wave pass and move on.

Talk to your doctor if you or a loved one are experiencing excessive stress, sadness, anxiety or worry for an extended period. Your mental health is as important as your physical health, and care is available.

The VEBA Resource Center offers Restorative Yoga for Stress Management. Learn different techniques (breathing, relaxation, mindfulness and restorative poses) to help manage the cumulative effects of stress and support overall health. Check out our calendar to sign up for an upcoming class.