Calm Within the Storm | Robyne Hanley-Dafoe

Summary of: Calm Within the Storm: A Pathway to Everyday Resiliency
By: Robyne Hanley-Dafoe


Embark on a journey to everyday resiliency with Robyne Hanley-Dafoe’s book, ‘Calm Within the Storm: A Pathway to Everyday Resiliency’. The book explores the concept of resilience – the ability to bounce back and recover from adversity – and delves into real-life challenges, offering compassion, insight, and hope. Hanley-Dafoe discusses the barriers to resiliency, such as stress, fear, and stigma, and suggests practical strategies like adopting a daily practice of authenticity, embracing belonging, gaining perspective, and fostering hope. The book serves as empathetic guide to help you overcome life’s setbacks and improve your self-esteem, communication, and emotional regulation.

Building Resilience

In her book, psychology instructor Robyne Hanley-Dafoe presents a compassionate guide to help individuals cope with life’s inevitable hardships. Hanley-Dafoe emphasizes that it is possible to recover from setbacks and grow from personal challenges. Through her discussion of real-life examples, readers are offered insight, compassion, and hope to bolster their resilience in the face of grief and adversity.

Building Resilience

Resilience is the ability to bounce back from adversity. It’s the strength, flexibility and capacity for restoration. To become more resilient, we need to confront barriers such as stress, fear, and stigma. Comparing ourselves to others and feeling like failures can lower our self-esteem and lessen compassion and empathy. Building resiliency requires pushing through decision by decision, creating new life paths. In her book, Hanley-Dafoe urges readers to develop a resilient mindset, facing life’s challenges bravely, and seeing themselves as capable of doing hard things.

Overcoming Stress with Deep Breathing

The author notes that stress can be a performance enhancer but excessive stress can lead to performance issues, exhaustion, and confusion, thus decreasing resilience. To ease stress, the author recommends taking deep breaths while thinking “stress in, distress out.”

Confronting Fear

People often let fear prevent them from moving forward, but that fear can be overcome by facing it head-on. Hanley-Dafoe advises exploring the source of the fear and devising a plan to prevent the worst-case scenario. Inaction can lead to a lost opportunity, but taking action despite fear can lead to personal growth and resilience.

Overcoming Stigma

Stigma can be damaging to one’s mental well-being, as it creates a sense of shame and leads to negative self-talk. The pressure to conform to societal norms contributes to this shame and can be overcome by embracing one’s authenticity. Hanley-Dafoe recommends daily practices of emotional honesty, compassion, and self-acceptance to combat shame. By letting go of the need to meet others’ expectations and loving oneself wholeheartedly, individuals can overcome the damaging effects of stigma.

The Power of Belonging

Belonging is crucial for resilience. To nurture longevity, it’s important to foster bonds with your tribes – whether it be family, friends, or co-workers. The author suggests connecting with yourself and finding what makes you strong, identifying different types of support in your social networks, and joining new communities. Starting small and building sustainable connections can lead to growth and fulfillment.

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