Resilience and Resiliency Training

and Resiliency Training
• How many people here feel as though they have been resilient at
different times in their lives?
How many people here feel that there were other times in their
lives that they would have liked to be more resilient?
How many people here have gone to or currently are in graduate
I am not an expert in resilience, although as a clinician at the OTSSC - some maysay
that I am involved in a sort of resiliency training. I am a member of the Membership
Committee of the APNS and in response to feedback that we have received, we
would like to be REACHING OUT to non- HRM commentates more effectively.
This is a very superficial overview of resiliency and an introduction of a resiliency
training program that is available to you by virtue of being s in Nova Scotia.
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Definition and Basic Theories
Initial research
Resiliency Training - Outcome Research
What APNS can do
A Resiliency Training Program
Given that we are Psychologists
Review the literature to explore what the research has told us
about Resiliency
This is not an exhaustive list, nor is it a critical review
Resilience and Resiliency Training
“resourceful adaptation to changing circumstances and
environmental contingencies” -- Block & Block, 1980
“the capacity for recovery and maintained adaptive
behaviour that may follow initial retreat or incapacity upon
initiating a stressful event” --- Garmezy, 1991
“the positive pole of individual differences in people’s
response to distress and adversity -- Rutter, 1987
“A motivation (drive) and/or set of skills which direct
people to cope or adapt in ways that maximize emotional,
physical and psychological well-being -- especially in the face
of adversity -- Hill, 2004 - open to discussion
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Theory # 1
Reaction to problem / diagnostic focus of clinical
psychology -- Werner, 1982
The possession of developmental assets and protective
factors -- Richardson, 2002
Rather than focus on the 20-30% of the “at risk” children,
why not focus on qualities, assets and protective factors of
the 70-80% who do not manifest pathology or dysfunction -Barnard, 1987
This theory focused more on the paradigm shift from being problem
focused of the minority to exploring the strengths of the majority
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Theory #2
Resilience = process
Life stressors happen. Reactions to life stressors can
either improve functioning (resilience), maintain functioning
(coping) or reduce functioning (dysfunction) -- Richardson,
This theory focused more on the fact that resilience appeared
not only to be the presence of strengths but the presence of
strength in the face of adversity
Making silk from a sow’s ear
Making the most of a bad situation
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Theory #3
Resilience describes an increased energy to grow -- Wilber, 1996
Could be biological or spiritual (e.g., a genetically “stronger:’
parasympathetic system response) or a firmly entrenched belief or
value system -- Hill, 2004
Resilient reintegration requires increased energy to grow (according to
Richardson , 2002)
Wilber describes “the great chain of being” a stemming from the:
Core of matter (Physics) with successive circular and interdependent
layers described as:
• Life (Biology)
• Mind (Psychology)
• Soul )Theology)
• Spirit (Mysticism)
However, both Wilber and Richardson neglect to consider genetic
and/or environmental contribution to “increased energy to grow.”
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Marked increase in “resilience and resiliency” research in the past
decade -- Barnard, 1997
Michael Rutter 1979, 1985 -- despite “many risk factors” 25% of
youths were resilient. These children were more likely to be female,
have demonstrated and “easy temperament”, experienced a “positive
school climate”, demonstrated self-mastery, self-efficacy and planning
skills and to have experienced a “positive and supportive relationship
with an adult.”
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Research (continued)
Emmy Werner, 1982 -- almost 50% of “at risk” youth demonstrated
adaptive function. These youth were more likely to be female, socially
responsible, adaptable, tolerant, achievement oriented, good
communication skills, and have high esteem.
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Summary of Findings
Wolkow & Ferguson, 2001
-- Within child
High self esteem, “warmth” and positive social
-- External to child
Families -- warm, cohesive, good boundaries
Communities -- additional supports and role models
prominent and available in the community at large.
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Resiliency Training
Maddi, 1997, 1998 & 2002
-- Developing coping strategies for stressful circumstances
-- Social skills training
-- Self care (including parasympathetic response training, I.e.,
relaxation training, autogenic training, mediation)
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Outcome Research
Maddi, 1997, 1998 & 2002
-- Illinois Bell Telephone (IBT) Co. and undergrads -- in the
first group, training associated with increased job satisfaction,
decreased levels of stress, less distrust, lower anxiety and lower blood
pressure than IBT managers who did not receive the training
-- The second group were graduate students who either went
through resiliency training or “conventional student enrichment”
training. The experimental group both coping effectiveness and GPA
increased in the following year
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Preventive Studies
Hughes, 2003 -- Greater risks when directed to lower income “at
risk” individuals
-- Low SES urban youth reported less risk-taking (theft and
violence scales), improved school attitudes, increased internal locus of
control, increased knowledge about anger and self control and
increased goal setting compared to controls
-- Higher SES suburban youth demonstrated fewer
differences from controls. There were slight increases in learning (not
knowledge) of anger and self control issues and slightly higher ratings
in cooperation and consideration problem-solving ratings
Resilience and Resiliency Training
Preventive Studies (continued)
Marrett, Sonderegger & Xenos, 2003
-- Compared young, culturally diverse, non-English speaking
migrants to Australia with and without resiliency training
-- Treatment group demonstrated higher self esteem, reduced
“internalizing problems” (CBCL) and more optimism about the future
than wait-list controls.
Resilience and Resiliency Training
What APNS Can Do
•Increased requests of Psychology as a profession to assist in
“bolstering the psychological immune system” -- Carpenter, 2001
•American Psychological Association -Carpenter, 2001 & Daw, 2002
•Romanow Report
APA Membership
Resiliency Training