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Thoughts on Social Resilience

 

It is arduous but possible to measure one’s social resilience. At one end, we can perceive that the lack of confidence; the tendency to remember and dwell on the more stressful and unhappy events; the inability to cope with trauma and some of the worst of life’s challenges, are the causes of desolation, melancholy, and depression. Now locked in a society which dictates a rigid and unrealistic code that challenges our mores, these minds are usually dominated by empathy, and as such, once provided the softer social patterns that have allowed the human race to develop and grow. In the past, this empathy provided caution and balance in primitive societies, but today it can emerge in a range of mindsets from complacency to pessimism.

These individuals are also prone to suggestion, and in varying degrees can adopt false but satisfying memories that could be suggested by an over-zealous therapist or by an over active use of fantasy.

 

At the other end of the spectrum there are those with the ability to change the pattern of thought during different situations; with the capacity to store and remember happier events in lieu of those less pleasant; can relegate such trauma and challenges into a relatively minor role, and allow the mind to concentrate its thinking in an entirely different direction. From such capacity were born the warriors, who in times past ensured the survival of the family or tribe. From such as these come today’s Special Forces, progressives and optimists.

 

The relationship between the two groups is interwoven and indistinct, with most people living their lives somewhere in the middle. Those at both extremes are at risk, with those of the former at a high risk to anxiety disorders, and those of the later at a high risk of showing a psychopathic tendency.

Each can have its own introverts and extroverts. Each can provide the full range of intellect and skills in human endeavor. Neither of these groups can be defined easily, although the measure of their mind-set can either be assessed by the observation of a series of life moves and reactions, or by their ability to either slowly or quickly move on after any of life’s challenges. 

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