The Importance Of Developing Effective Coping Strategies
Throughout our life we find that life throws lots of challenges at us, some bigger than others. And how we handle them makes all the difference. How do you deal with life challenges when they come up for you?
Are you strong, bold, and resilient and tackle challenges head on? Or are you weak, fearful, and quick to admit defeat? Learn more about how you deal with life’s challenges and why you react the way you do.
Having effective systems works. To be strong, bold, and resilient in the face of adversity you need effective coping skills in order to cope when things are hard.
Focus on the solution and not the problem
A Realistic Perspective…You need to be realistic and see things for what really they are. And don’t blow things out of all proportion or make a bigger issue minimalistic.
When should you take plan B
Your Plan B…have plan B in place. As there’s usually more than one way to overcome a challenge so be prepared if A doesn’t work go to plan B.
Let’s look at an example…For months you’ve been planning a vacation for your whole family. And everyone’s packed, ready to go and feeling pretty excited. But the very morning you’ve planned on leaving you find that your car has a flat tire. So how do you deal with this challenge?
It’s best to never panic
If you have effective coping skills or system, first you won’t panic but you’ll focus on the problem at hand. You focus on what’s most important and that’s replacing the tire either with a spare or maybe getting road service or a handy neighbor to come out and help.
The fact that the children might antsy and bored with energy they need to burn off due to the delay is not what’s most important to you right now. Or that the tire issues suddenly reminds you that you forgot to get the car’s oil changed before the trip. That’s also not something you need to focus on right now.
Focus on the solution
Turning all of your focus to the flat tire is what will help you find a solution and then deal with it. And you don’t try to complicate things, finding a realistic solution is the strong way to deal with the challenge.
Plan B might mean you have to either get a cab to get the airport or ask a friend or neighbor to drive you. If you don’t know your options, it’s hard to choose Plan B when things aren’t working right. If you have effective systems, you can face any challenge in life.
Ineffective Systems…If you are someone that doesn’t have good coping skills and life’s challenges seem to get the better of you then you are the opposite of effective. You don’t have effective systems in place but ineffective systems.
How to become more focused and effective in life
Being ineffective involves:
- Trying to fix too many problems at one time
- Having unrealistic expectations
- Also having a Lack of options
Let’s look at the same scenario again. It’s vacation day, and you discover you have a flat tire. Also the kids are upset, you didn’t change the oil. And to add to that your spouse is getting worried that you won’t make your flight. So there’s a lot going on all at once.
When You Are Clear and Focused You Are In Control
It may seem like it’s all too much for you to handle. But the fact is it’s your lack of focus that makes you feel weak and unable to cope. And it becomes overwhelming to you.
So even though you do actually have the power to solve the flat tire challenge, it’s hard to fix the immediate issue when your attention isn’t focused. And it’s just spread across too many problems at one time.
What you could do is you ask your spouse to take the children for a walk around the block. And then when they get back to write a reminder for you to get the oil changed. So this way you’ll create the space needed to focus on the flat tire. And then you can get on with solving the real problem.
Don’t let fear stop you for getting what you want
If you’re fearful of taking action the challenges in life become more difficult to deal with. For instance if you have fear around changing a tire because of a past experience. Maybe you tried it once in the past and it didn’t go well. And now you don’t even want to try again, so you won’t even consider this an option.
So when you don’t like having to call a friend to drive you or you don’t want to bother your neighbor for a ride your options become more limited. Plus if you think getting a cab or repair services is going to be too costly it leaves you without a good way to fix the problem. And really you’ll have let fear stop you from dealing with this challenge.
How do you overcome life’s challenges?
When you feel like you’ve run out of options, you may even start thinking that you should cancel the vacation and give up. If you can’t find a solution, you feel like you are defeated.
How would you deal with this challenge? Just take a few moments to think about it. This is just an example of using a flat tire but it could be anything in your life. How do you deal with challenges in general? It’s important to understand and recognize your own reaction to dealing with life challenges and to know what you need to do to overcoming them.