How to Bounce Back
Life can get a bit crazy, and Dr Justine Gatt, one of our resident Senior Research Sceintists and Group Leader was recently featured in a article about how you can make yourself more resilient to stress. Following on from her great work in the E-Twin study, she found that mental wellbeing is 48 per cent genetic. The rest is due to environment and so can be improved. “We predict that resilience to stress can also be built,” Gatt says. “It’s malleable and so you can learn to build your resources over a lifetime.”
“Resilience is more of a process, rather than a particular trait or behaviour,” explains Dr Justine Gatt.
An excerpt form the article is below:
You need to make choices that will let you bounce back up from stress. “That’s what being malleable is all about, adapting to your environment,” explains Gatt. “Picking and choosing what is right for you – this includes sometimes stepping out of your comfort zone to learn something new and promote growth.”
Being in the moment and practicing mindfulness is another powerful tool. “The easiest way to remember is the five senses: eat, smell, taste, hear and touch. When you’re out for a meal for instance, you look at the food, smell it, taste it – don’t worry about yesterday and tomorrow but be there at that moment,” Gatt explains.
Its important to have or find some purpose in life – a meaning that’s a foundation you can return to again and again in difficult times and basically reminds you of the big picture“It takes a bit of practice to be conscious of these things: what you value; your goals,” Gatt says.”But having your own purpose can help guide you in times when you feel lost.”
“The main thing to remember is that there’s always a period you need to deal with the stress at hand,” explains Gatt, “And when you’re dealing with something stressful you need to not ruminate, it doesn’t help the situation.”
Gatt advises that we schedule time for fun. “The thing we forget about is thinking about things we actually like doing and putting them in your diary. It gives you something to look forward to and being present in the moment when you are enjoying what you are doing.”
Gatt actually colour codes her own diary, yellow is for the fun things like hanging out with her daughter playing games on the phone and watching TV, while red is for the all-important to-do list.
For the full article see HERE