Coping skills for mobility


When we recognize that there is a process of mobility which involves steps before, during and after the stay abroad, we can look further at how to provide support during the different stages.

How can we assist individuals during their stay abroad if something goes wrong? We should take into account the distance, but also the new technologies at our disposal. We can offer tools, so that the participant, even in an early stage, can reflect on what is happening to him or her. Thus we can contribute to the prevention of problems, and the tools could offer some help in the lighter cases.

It is clear if a mobility participant is running into heavy problems, he or she should look for professional help on-site.

How can we deal with coping skills?

Challenging behaviour can often be the result of an individual’s inability to manage their emotions. What skills have mobility participants learned to help them cope with the everyday problems they face while being abroad? There can be a gap in the participant’s ability to take responsibility for their own actions and employ their own coping skills.

Coping skills as first aid?

Here is a compilation of pictures with thoughts and ideas for self-reflection and self-help that mobility participants abroad and their counsellors can use online. These tools can also be used before or after the experience abroad, for preparation or follow-up of the participants and their environment (family, friends...).
You can choose among the following items(list is not exhaustive):
- Anxiety/anger/fear/panic
- Failure - success
- Stress
- Conflicts
- Resilience
- Negative - positive selftalk
- Inter-cultural competences
- Defense mechanism
- Effective communication
- Emotional intelligence
- Empathy
- Empower tools
- Coping
- Change
- Control

Coping strategies.


HealthyMinds is a multi-activity problem-solving tool to help deal with emotions and cope with the stresses students encounter both on and off campus. The goal: Keeping your mind healthy. The app has been developed by one of Canada’s foremost mental health care and academic health science centres – The Royal.
Learn more about the app on The Royal website.
This free app is available at the App store and Google play

Information sheet about coping skills.

This resource has been developed by Australian mental health worker and consumer activist Indigo Daya. Daya explains: Coping skills won’t solve our underlying issues, but they are an important step along the path to recovery. Coping skills help us to survive difficult emotions, thoughts and experiences. They give us a break from our pain, which in turn gives us space to build our personal skills, strengths and resources.
You can download the flyer in PDF-format here for free.

Strategies for coping

Take care of yourself:
- rest
- develop daily routines
- protect your health
Reduce uncertainty:
- seek information
- take action
Get away from it all:
- exercise
- read
- play
Reduce demands:
- establish priorities
- eliminate some activities,
- reduce self-imposed demands

Assume control:
- make choices and decisions
- make your needs known
Finish unfinished business:
- write it out
- express emotions
- set short-term goals
Take advantage of your environment:
- establish a support group,
- use resources
- share in others experiences

Adapted from:
Culture Matters: The Peace Corps Cross-Cultural Workbook: The Peace Corps Cross-Cultural Workbook
by Craig Storti, Laurette Bennhold-Samaan, Peace Corps
Paperback, 264 pages
Published February 11th 2011 by Peace Corps (U.S.)