How Secure Attachment Builds Resilience

Enhance Your Well-Being and Quality of Life

So, what’s the big deal about secure attachment? “Attachment” has become a buzz word and everyone’s trying to figure out what kind of attachment they have.

In general, humans have an innate need for secure attachment. That is, we have a need for consistent and responsive caregiving to meet our needs for comfort, affection, and attention. When this bond is developed, we feel safe and secure, which creates a strong foundation for all future relationships and forms a healthy view of people.

Briefly, people who have a secure attachment style are in touch with their emotions and are responsive to others’ emotions. They easily bond and build strong connections with others. They have healthy boundaries and expectations in relationships. Moreover, they have clear communication and easily work through conflicts.

Research has found that people with secure attachment generally do better in all areas of life. Here are some ways:

  • They have higher self-esteem
  • Their self-worth is based on who they are and not what other’s think of them
  • They have more successful relationships
  • They have longer lasting and more fulfilling jobs
  • They are generally happier in life
  • They have a robust support network
  • They have satisfying and healthy marriages
  • They are physically healthier and recover from illnesses quicker
  • They are less depressed and anxious

In other words, people who have secure attachment are more resilient.

Unfortunately, only about half of us (or less) have a secure attachment style. Therefore, many people need to learn to develop a secure attachment style (or support our loved ones to do so)…which is COMPLETELY possible!

Here’s some tips to get you started.

  1. Practice self-compassion

Treat yourself like you would a good friend. Talk to yourself with more kindness when you make a mistake. Forgive yourself when you’ve messed up instead of beating yourself up.  Check in with yourself to see how you’re doing and show yourself support instead of judgment when you need it most. With consistent practice, you will develop a healthier relationship with yourself and thus, a more secure attachment.

  1. Identify a secure role model

Think about someone in your life, past or present, with a secure attachment style. This could be a parent, teacher, coach, friend, or sibling. Notice how they interact with others: what they say, how they act, what they choose to ignore, and how they view life and relationships. Emulate them. They will be your role model of what secure attachment is like.

  1. Meet your attachment needs in various ways

There are several ways to take care of your attachment needs. Start by hanging out with people who are supportive and encouraging—who make you feel good about yourself. Other things you can do include eating healthy, exercising, meditating, journaling, playing, walking, watching the sunset, listening to music, laughing, and resting. These activities nurture your soul and grounds you in who you are.

  1. Ask for what you need

Directly ask for your needs to be met simply by expressing how you feel, what you want, and why. Don’t skirt around the issue and hope that the other party will get it. Moreover, don’t blame, criticize, or complain about what you don’t have but want. This will never help you achieve it. In fact, it usually gets you the opposite of what you want. By directly asking for what you need, you have the best chance at getting them met.

Remember, we all have to start somewhere. Wherever you’re at, know that all humans have a natural propensity towards secure attachment. So, trust your internal compass that will guide you back to resilience.

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