Coping And Overcoming Life Stressors 2

The second session of the worshop on Coping And Overcoming Life Stressors yesterday was even more interesting than the first one last week. The topic for discussion is ‘Using the Iceberg Metaphor as an Assessment Tool”. Those who were in the Guided Autobiography Course at the Bishan Library may be surprised at the last statement. But the fact is, we spent three enjoyable hours on it, and will continue next week.

In the opening activity Abby, the facilitator, asked the participants to form new triads by introducing ourselves to each other as a household electrical appliance and why we choose this appliance. Abby then explained that we would be exploring an useful tool to find out what is inside us – the Iceberg Metaphor.

Our behaviour (our action, with the coping stances – the waterline – discussed in the last session) makes up only 10% of what people see in us. The other 90% is made up of Feelings, Feelings About Feelings, Perceptiions, Expectations, Yearning/Needs and Self.

Feelings – for example, anger;

Feelings About Feelings

Perceptions – thoughts, belief, assumptions

Expectations – of self, of others and from others

Yearning/Needs – love, acceptance, freedom etc. This will drive our behaviour and includes Basic Needs such as water and food, house, clothes, comfort, rest and safety; Love and Belonging i.e. relationships; Power e.g. status, authority, respect, achievemnet, recognition and significance; Freedom in making one’s choice; Fun which brings out the creativity in us.

Self – core, esteem, self-confidence, determining the value for self

In the workshop, we are made aware through examples that all the layers are not sequential and can be jumbled up. What is deep inside us tell us how we should behave. We are able to express our needs in different situations. We should ask ourselves this: if we don’t care for ourselves, who will care for us? Hence the yearnings, needs and belonging.

We had only about an hour to work in our triads on how to use the Iceberg template and learn how all the layers can affect how we see ourselves. All the layers will build up to strong feelings and perceptions over time throughout our lives and will be reflected through our behaviour as adults.

There wasn’t enough time for sharing among the different triads, so that’ll be the first thing we’ll do next week before continuing to learn about Communication. I eagerly anticipate next week’s session.

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