Building Resilience in Young People

At Worth-it we have developed our own way of supporting young people to develop resilience. We apply this approach through a range of programmes, training’s and interventions.

What is resilience?

Resilience is essentially the successful adaptation in the presence of risk or adversity (Garmezy, 1986; Luthar, 2003; Olsson, Bond, Burns, Vella-Brodrick, & Sawyer, 2003). Resilience does not mean you are immune to stressful situations rather that you can overcome and deal with them.

There are numerous examples of young people and adults who have “overcome the odds” of negative effects of risks. These people would be considered resilient. Rather than a single influence or factor, resilience is the outcome of a process that takes into account both the level of risk exposure and the presence of protective factors. These protective factors are often internal strategies and resources that come from within the individual, although these come naturally to some people, they are skills that can be taught and learnt.

Research shows that the ability to navigate, overcome and recover from adversity is the key ingredient for happiness, success and satisfaction in life.

Resilience is the distinct ability to recover from difficult events rather than an invulnerability to stress.

Resilience is a dynamic learning process that combines several internal mechanisms and strategies that individuals utilise when faced with challenges or adversity. Our approach helps young people learn skills that develop these components of resilience.

What are the main components of resilience?
  • Optimism – a sense of a positive future, a tendency to find positive meaning in experiences, and a belief in one’s ability to impact positively on one’s environment and situation.
  • Emotional awareness and control – the ability to understand how you feel and control feelings expressed so that they remain appropriate to a given situation.
  • Impulse control – the ability not to rush to make decisions or tack action without thinking. The ability to sit back and look at things in a thoughtful way before acting.
  • Empathy and connection – the ability to notice and correctly interpret the needs and wants of other people. The ability to connect with others and have positive relationships.
  • Self-efficacy – confidence and belief in your ability to solve problems and achieve goals for yourself.
  • Flexible and accurate thinking – possessing multiple solutions to a problem and having many reasons for being successful in something.
How to build resilience in young people

Promoting and building resilience in young people is key to our model of improving mental wellbeing. Our targeted resilience workshops for young people and training for staff addresses and offers tools and techniques to achieve the main components of resilience:

  • Optimism – our training encourages young people to help themselves and to think positively about themselves and their situations.  It also helps young people recognise their strengths, feel good and notice the things that are going well in their lives.
  • Emotional awareness and control – young people gain an understanding of their feelings and how to effectively manage and express a range of feelings in a healthy and positive way.
  • Impulse control – young people can sometimes find it hard to understand or control their reactions to situations which can often be unhelpful and impulsive. Our training encourages young people to pause, think and act differently (positively) to these same situations.
  • Empathy and connection – we know that when young people feel supported and confident in themselves, they like to make a difference to help other young people. it has been evidenced that if young people are connected to both school and peers in equal measure it helps protect against mental health problems developing.
  • Self-efficacy – we provide techniques that help young people develop as individuals, grow in confidence and nurtures essential skills, tools and knowledge for life and its potential problems.
  • Flexible and accurate thinking – we encourage students to learn several different thinking skills that they can use to manage situations, challenges negative and unhelpful thinking, and better understand themselves and others. We support them to use these thinking skills to become self-aware and have self-belief in their abilities.
Resilience training in schools

Our techniques are evidence-based and have strong, lasting results with the young people who are exposed to our resilience training approach.

If you would like to talk further about resilience building for the young people in your school then please contact us so that we can arrange a convenient time to talk through your questions or requirements.

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