Sonntag, 1. März 2015


Resilience is often mentioned in the same breath with health.
Resilience is often defined as “the psychological resistance towards biological, psychological and psychosocial risks of development” (Wustmann, 2004), sometimes it is also called as “bouncebackabiliy”.
That resistance depends on two important groups of factors: risk factors and safety factors. Risk factors, which can impair the resistance, are among others social isolation, bullying, incapacious housing conditions, loss of a family member or a friend, and especially for children even developmental deficits, low socioeconomic status, having a single parent and low educational level of the parents. To the safety factors which can strengthen the resistance belong self-efficacy, self-monitoring, social competences, problem-solving abilities, good dealing with stress, and above all for children even stable caregivers, high socioeconomic status, and high educational level of the parents.

„A very nice literary example for a resilient child is Pippilotta Langstrumpf. Her mother dies early, her father is a lot on the road and cares only sporadically for her. … With all the risks that entail her biography, she has a big repertoire of coping strategies at her disposal.

She thinks extremely positive, has a lot of ideas how to solve problems, is inquisitive and interrogative and shows a lot of humour. She behaves targeted in her concern and is unswerving in her self-awareness.” (Manfred Burghardt, 2005)

That sounds good, isn’t it?
To be able to resist to that what drums from the outside onto us, to be able to oppose something to the rush.
Humans always felt assaulted and threatened, or at least time after time.
Perhaps today the feeling of psychical threat is the strongest ones, mostly it is cared for our physical necessities. We have to eat, a place to live, in most cases at the right temperature, we live in ordered circumstances, hygienically and often even financially. And we have still the need to be sheltered, to be surrounded, to give oneself a treat.
But what exactly do we mean with that?
Do we want to thicken our membranes that nothing could go through to us?
Do we want to strengthen our walls, so that we cannot be captured?
Do we want the complete impermeability?
For if we strengthen our outer shell more and more, add further layers of walls, it becomes more and more impermeable – not only for assaults of other people, but even for that what makes the interpersonal things and life in general pleasant, if not worth living: for affection, friendship, love, deep communication, joy of living.
Do we really want that?

Resilire – that means to jump off, to bounce back.
Resilire – that implies always a resistance, an opposition.
Pippi Langstrumpf is a strong girl. She sets her opposition against those who want from the outside something from her – be it hoodlums, policemen or Miss Prüsselius. But her opposing, her strategies to cope with her problems, there’s more to come. Health is not only an against it, there is more. Not only resilire, but even re-silentium (“back to silence”) – a backtracking of the world to be then able to exit again back into the world. The protection of outer influences is sometimes important for us, it has its place – but we mustn’t stand still with that. Of resistance alone arises no joy of living. If we strengthen our outer walls too much, we immure ourselves – but we need membranes that are so permeable to the outside that they allow us to make contact with our outer world, to communicate – and nevertheless not to merge with it, but to stay ourselves.

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