Coping: The Psychology of What Works

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Most people take the process of coping for granted as they go about their daily activities. In many ways, coping is like breathing, an automatic process requiring no apparent effort. However, when people face truly threatening events-what psychologists call stressors-they become acutely aware of the coping process and respond by consciously applying their day-to-day coping skills. Coping is a fundamental psychological process, and people's skills are commensurately sophisticated. This volume builds on people's strengths and emphasizes their role as positive copers. It features techniques for preventing psychological problems and breaks from the traditional research approach, which is modeled on medicine and focuses on pathology and treatment. Collecting both award-winning research and new findings, this book may well set the agenda for research on stress and coping for the next century. These provocative and readable essays explore a variety of topics, including reality negotiation, confessing through writing, emotional intelligence, optimism, hope, mastery-oriented thinking, and more. Unlike typical self-help books available at any newsstand, this volume features the work of some of the most eminent researchers in the field. Yet like those books it is written for the general reader, as well as for the specialist, and includes numerous practical suggestions and techniques. It will prove an invaluable tool for a wide range of readers.