Trauma experienced in the lives of children and families can cause traumatic stress reactions that may have included substance abuse in an attempt to cope with the pain.  According to research conducted to investigate Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) revealed that 20 to 63 percent of survivors of child maltreatment diagnosed with PTSD (Gabbay, V., Oatis, M.D., Silva, R. & Hirsch, G. 2004).  The percentage is a broad range and remains this way because everyone is unique and personalities vary in addition to having something called “resilience.”  The resilience factor is an ineffable quality which allows some people to get knocked down and get stronger every time they get back up.  Resilience builds upon natural responses based on having gratitude and positive attitude.

“There are only two ways to live…one is

as though nothing is a miracle…

the other is as if everything is.”  

-Albert Einstein

However, it is important for the provider to consider the patient’s personality when developing a plan of care.  The “Care Management Plan” is a plan that the patient is able and willing to do.  The personality contains three inseparable aspects:

1) Uniqueness or individuality

2) Universality or relatedness

3) Transcendence or spirit (formless/timeless – nontemporal)

This perspective found in Chaudhuri’s vision of integral psychology which promotes the “whole personality.”  

Cinthia McFeature, Ph.D. discusses assessment focus:

“HeartPath narrative assessment focuses on the themes and patterns which arise from the telling of the story revealing both the challenges and successes in each patient’s story.”


Resilience is the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats, or even significant sources of stress — such as family and relationship problems, serious health problems, or workplace and financial stressors. It means “bouncing back” from difficult experiences.
Psych Central

There are personality assessments available that can be easily administered and will hold much value when addressing complex trauma.  The awareness of the traumatic events can help the patient see the strengths they had all along.  Many times the patient will have an epiphany and see that the resilience factor had always been there.  The resilience factor can be hidden by fear. Therefore the patient may have tried to cope by using drugs and alcohol or other behaviors which have caused more complexity.

The plan of care should be balanced to address all of the areas impacted by trauma.  The plan of care should include mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual areas.  The patient will gain an understanding that it is possible to move forward on a path to healing and self-realization.   

Tips for Building Up Resilience:

Make connections. Good relationships with close family members, friends or others are important. Accepting help and support from those who care about you and will listen to you strengthens resilience. Some people find that being active in civic groups, faith-based organizations, or other local groups provides social support and can help with reclaiming hope. Assisting others in their time of need also can benefit the helper.

Avoid seeing crises as insurmountable problems. You can’t change the fact that highly stressful events happen, but you can change how you interpret and respond to these events. Try looking beyond the present to how future circumstances may be a little better. Note any subtle ways in which you might already feel somewhat better as you deal with difficult situations.

Accept that change is a part of living. Certain goals may no longer be attainable as a result of adverse situations. Accepting circumstances that cannot be changed can help you focus on circumstances that you can alter.

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Developing the skills to become more resilient is just another way New Roads Behavioral Health can help individuals become free from the restraints that life has placed upon them. Our team of highly trained professionals is here to help. Learn how to make life worth living and obtain success: 888-358-8998. Call today for your free evaluation.