Phone: 604-377-5277

A telehealth service for British Columbia

Dr. Derek Swain

Registered Psychologist #1006


Transitions & Life Adjustments

Stressful and traumatic life events affect people in different ways. People often find individual strategies to help them cope. Some people find writing about their thoughts and feelings to be helpful, while others use meditation and spiritual beliefs.

The following are some general ideas that are likely to be helpful in building your resilience.

Keep things in perspective.

Even very painful events can be put into a wider context and, in the long-term, may not be as devastating as they currently feel. Problems often pass with time.

Avoid seeing crises as insurmountable problems.

You can't change the fact that stressful events happen, but you can change how you interpret and respond to these events. Problems can often be resolved by using new ideas.

Accept that change happens.

Some circumstances cannot be changed. Focus on what you can change.

Focus on what you can learn as a result of your struggles.

Many people who have suffered through hardships find that they have grown in the process, perhaps gaining better understanding, relationships, self-worth, personal strength, and appreciation for life.

Move toward your goals.

Seek realistic and achievable goals. Do something regularly, even a small task, which will contribute to the achievement of your objectives.

Take decisive actions for immediate concerns.

Rather than wishing that problems would simply go away, take charge of the situation as best you can.

Nurture a positive view of yourself.

As you make decisions and move toward your goals, acknowledge your own accomplishments in the face of adversity. Look toward building confidence in your ability to deal with problems effectively.

Maintain a hopeful outlook.

Strive to be optimistic and look for the silver lining rather than focussing on the dark and gloomy cloud of current

Make connections.

Instead of withdrawing and hiding from others, this is a time to seek the comfort of trusted family members and

Take care of yourself.

Focus on fulfilling your needs - particularly those basic human needs for Community: a sense of belonging
and connection with others; Meaning: a sense of purpose in life; and Structure: a sense of organization, routine, and stability. Be sure to  participate regularly in activities that give you exercise, enjoyment, and/or relaxation.

Through counselling, you can learn to find new perspectives on your problems, new attitudes and emotional reactions to those difficulties, and new skills and behaviours to help you address problems more effectively.