Significant Lifespan Factors Impacting Personal Coping Skills
Human beings develop throughout their lifespan, as they make good choices to meet their physical, spiritual and emotional needs. While development is not sequential, it is progressive as the story of life molds and shapes the beliefs and choices of the future. When humans are compared and evaluated, what is it that influences one person to make good choices and another to make bad choices?
The ability to adapt and handle times of crisis is a good indicator of a healthy, well-balanced life. It is an indicator that affects almost everyone. It takes skills that mature and ...view middle of the document...
When examining the development of an individual over a lifetime, many have found it helpful to view the life as a narrative story. The story concept provides the framework to present the flow of the chapters of life. Many see the emergence of the life story at some point in adolescence (Kober, Schmiedek, & Habermas, 2015, p. 260).
Studies have shown that in the development of one’s life story three distinct threads begin to emerge in the adolescent years. The first thread, temporal coherence brings together the idea of events of life being related to one another. Causal-motivational coherence is the second thread and it has the individual becoming aware of personal development as life progresses. Finally thematic coherence allows the individual to identify dominant life themes. As these three threads begin to take shape, the individual can begin to interpret life’s events for understanding and analysis (Kober, Schmiedek, & Habermas, 2015, p. 262).
To many, coping and development would seem to be as intertwined as a perfectly woven tapestry. Developmental factors that shape the individual’s ability to handle stress include a maturing understanding of what constitutes a trigger for stress, the individual’s deployment of personal and social resources that are available for managing stress, and the individual’s ability to adapt to short and long-term effect of exposure to stressors (Skinner, 1998, p. 357).
The purpose of this study is to examine the life events and circumstances of the author to determine if certain events contribute more positively toward the coping and handling of stress. Based on personal experience and a review of pertinent research, it appears that three kinds of experiences can make a positive impact on coping with stressful events.
The study will begin with a brief summary of some of the major events in my life. Three themes, a religious foundation, a stable family life and structure, and individual career and job satisfaction, will be examined throughout the story of the lifespan. Upon analysis, it will be shown that these three themes can make a significant contribution to the ability to cope with stress.
I was born into a loving, middle-class family. My parents had been married a short while before the birth of two boys, of which I am the oldest. My family was fairly typical with the father playing the role of primary disciplinarian. The relationship between the siblings was very normal: occasional rivalries, significant loyalty which over the years grew into strong friendship, and typical adult comparisons of the two by teachers, coaches and other connected adults.
My family had a strong religious heritage in the Roman Catholic tradition of faith. Though not fanatical about our faith, our family was regular attenders of mass, confession and the celebration of the holidays and sacraments. Prayer was emphasized and practiced in the home.
My family also emphasized and...