When we asked Dr. Meggen Tucker Sixbey, a Clinical Associate Professor and Associate Director of the University of Florida’s Counseling and Wellness Center, about some of the issues she currently sees students struggling with, one she mentioned was…
“Building resilience is something that we’ve heard a lot about. Something we haven’t heard as much about is building emotional intelligence which feeds into resilience [and causes students to think] ‘I don’t know how I’m feeling, I don’t know how you’re feeling.’ So, it’s growing emotional intelligence that can then increase your own emotional capacity, your capacity for empathy for others.
“A lot of our outreach programs really try to focus on staying well and being well. We will tell students over and over, ‘Use helping resources before you need them, because when you need them it’s harder to learn skills and build coping mechanisms or access them.’ So, when you can learn those things or practice those things from a place of wellness and wholeness, then when you experience a death or a relationship breakup or other life challenge, you can more readily access them as opposed to, ‘Oh let me try to learn this in the middle of a crisis.’
“It can be hard [to show them the need for resilience now] because they don’t need it until they need it.”
You can hear much more from Dr. Sixbey through her excellent On-Demand Training: “Develop Resilience in Your Students: Help Them Overcome Adversity to Grow and Thrive.”