Did you know your ability to adapt to change, succeed in the workforce and live resiliently, is based on your psychological flexibility?
So what is psychological flexibility?
Good question. It can be defined as extent to how a person can: 1) adapts to fluctuating demands, 2) reconfigures mental resources, 3) shifts perspective, and 4) balances competing desires, needs and life domains (Kashdan and Roterburg, 2010).
Learning psychological flexibility will allow you to not just cope with stress but to also do more of what you value/ what is important to you.
How can it be enhanced?
People can learn to be more ‘psychological flexible’ by learning how to be present with difficult thoughts and emotions and to accept ourselves as we are, not as we think we should be. For instance, it is valuable accept that it is normal to feel nervous before a job interview, presentation or a big event. There is not benefit in avoiding situations, in an attempt to ward ourselves from having difficult thoughts and emotions. The tendency to avoid personal discomfort at any cost, only leads to narrowing your opportunities is life (particularly work opportunities and important discussions) and also tends to increase the frequency, strength and duration of negative thoughts and emotions (Harris,2009 ).
So learning to be more psychologically flexible is not about making life easier or more pleasant, but more about working towards a life worth living. It will allow you to not just cope with stress but to also do more of what you value/ what is important to you.
At EHC we use the framework of ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy) to assist clients to learn to become more psychological flexible.