Posts Tagged 'self care'

6 Cs of Resilience

I offer the “6 Cs of resilience” to stimulate your thinking and perhaps guide your actions:

Clarity about values, ideas, goals, and strategies to accomplish those goals. Such clarity will come in and out of focus and require fresh thinking when circumstances change within and around us.

Commitment to persist through difficult times. Resilience sometimes requires doing the thing we don’t want to do but that we know is important.

Communication that seeks first to understand and that is both respectful and assertive. Such communication is particularly challenging when people vigorously disagree with us by asserting values and positions that we believe are irrational and even immoral.

Community to gain clarity, support, guidance, inspiration, and the power of collective action when we are addressing powerful social and economic forces. Dialogue created in community can also help us find and maintain clarity.

Courage to do what is uncomfortable and even frightening. Courage is not the absence of fear, but instead acting in its presence. As someone once said, “Feel the fear and do it anyways.”

Care, beginning with self-care. Self-care means making our physical, emotional, and spiritual health a priority, because if we don’t care for ourselves the other Cs will be difficult if not impossible to achieve. Care also includes, of course, respect for others, especially those with whom we most strongly disagree.

No matter our starting place, the “6Cs” enable us to take well-considered stands about things that are significant to us and to join with others to achieve what we cannot accomplish alone.

Which of the Cs is most important for you at this particular moment in time?

Being more compassionate with ourselves

Dennis

[S]elf-directed compassion triggers the same physiological systems as receiving care from other people. Treating ourselves in a kind and caring way has many of the same effects as being supported by others…. Just as importantly, self-compassion eliminates the additional distress that people often heap on themselves through criticism and self-blame. —Mark Leary

While we cannot always control the things that happen to us, we do have a great deal of influence over how we respond to those things.

One of the best examples of that influence is the self-care we can give to ourselves during difficult times.

While many of us find it difficult to practice self-care, it is often as simple as extending to ourselves the same kindness and compassion we extend to others.

The fundamental question is: What kindness would I offer to others right now if they were experiencing my challenge, and how might I offer that caring to myself?

How do you or could you extend to yourself the kindness and caring you offer others?

Taking care of ourselves so that we can take care of others

Construction site

Take care of yourself. Take care of others. In so many words that’s what this sign—which I’ve seen posted on local construction sites—reminds workers to do.

“Take care of yourself, take care of others” is also a way of life in schools that support the success of all students and staff members, a way of being together that improves the quality of learning and relationships in classrooms and within the school community as a whole.

Taking care of others, I am confident, was a reflexive reaction during the past week as schools across the United States and around the world grieved the students and staff members of Sandy Hook Elementary School and sought comfort with one another.

Putting others before self is a default setting for most teachers and principals, as it was at Sandy Hook. But it’s a practice that over time can have a devastating effect on one’s physical and emotional well being.

Because taking care of ourselves is ultimately a precondition for taking care of others, I hope the upcoming holiday break provides educators with abundant opportunities for physical, emotional, and spiritual renewal.

Such replenishment is essential even during the best of times. And these have not been the best of times.


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