Stress blog

Survival is a team sport

By Edward T. Creagan, M.D. August 14, 2013

The comments in the past few weeks reflect incredible pain, suffering, deceit and bitterness. There is no pill. There is no quick fix. There is no guru who can easily heal these sorts of wounds. Bad things happen to good people. That's just the way life is.

However, we can learn from those who have overcome adversity:

  • Recognize that you can't go it alone. The Lone Ranger and Rambo are myths. It takes a village to raise a child, and it takes a village to support one another in dealing with life's difficulties. The evidence can be seen in the success of programs such as Alcoholics Anonymous and Al-Anon.
  • Make use of professionals. Find a credentialed professional, such as a psychologist or social worker, you can talk to. Or if that's not possible, find a friend who listens attentively and without judgment.
  • Don't neglect your needs. I call this the "oxygen mask theory." Everyone is familiar with the flight attendant speech that if there's a loss in cabin pressure, oxygen masks will drop from the ceiling and you should put on your mask before assisting others. If we reach out to others without our own mask, we will not survive.

With

Edward T. Creagan, M.D.

Follow on Twitter: @EdwardCreagan

Join the discussion at #Stress.

Aug. 14, 2013