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Transformational Resilience

How Building Human Resilience to Climate Disruption Can Safeguard Society and Increase Wellbeing

Using the author’s extensive experience of advising public, private and non-profit sectors on personal, organization, and community behavioral and systems change knowledge and tools, this book applies a new lens to the question of how to respond to climate change. It offers a scientifically rigorous understanding of the negative mental health and psychosocial impacts of climate change and argues that overlooking these issues will have very damaging consequences. The practical assessment of various methods to build human resilience offered by Transformational Resilience then makes a powerful case for the need to quickly expand beyond emission reductions and hardening physical infrastructure to enhance the capacity of individuals and groups to cope with the inevitable changes affecting all levels of society.

Applying a trauma-informed mental health and psychosocial perspective, Transformational Resilience offers a groundbreaking approach to responding to climate disruption. The book describes how climate disruption traumatizes societies and how effective responses can catalyze positive learning, growth, and change.

My humble suggestion is to read this book and to share it widely. That's just what I'm doing and I'm happy to have my own copy that I can mark up over and over again. It now looks like a tie dye shirt that makes me smile. Transformational Resilience could well be a game changer and a daily dose might be a most effective way to counter all the ‘negative stuff’ that's happening and to make sure that the future remains bright for our magnificent planet and its awesome array of beings.

 

 

Psychology Today on 15 Mar 2016 Marc Bekoff, PhD

My humble suggestion is to read this book and to share it widely. That's just what I'm doing and I'm happy to have my own copy that I can mark up over and over again. It now looks like a tie dye shirt that makes me smile. Transformational Resilience could well be a game changer and a daily dose might be a most effective way to counter all the ‘negative stuff’ that's happening and to make sure that the future remains bright for our magnificent planet and its awesome array of beings

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/animal-emotions/201603/transformational-resilience-my-go-book-hope on 15 Mar 2016 Marc Bekoff, PhD

I enjoyed Bob Doppelt’s book. It is well-informed and covers the topic in depth. His emphasis on the psychological mechanisms underlying the stress response is useful

Professor Susan Clayton, The College of Wooster

Doppelt is right. Young people have been dealt a bad hand, but there is no merit in hand-wringing or blaming others. We still reside on the planet of most remarkable life and beauty. We must use the challenge of preserving this for future generations to overcome any feelings of regret or despair.

James Hansen, Professor, Department of Earth and Environmental Science, Columbia University. Former Head, NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies

If, as some suggest, climate crisis is a crisis of character, then Bob Doppelt in this warmly inspiring and wholly practical new text spells out how each of us might begin to address that crisis, beginning in our own communities – in order that we might become not only more resilient, but wiser as well. A humane and timely contribution to climate change activism.

Dr. Jonathan Coope, Chair of 'Greening the Mind' Integrated Research Group, Centre for Social Futures, Institute of Mental Health, Nottingham, UK

Climate change impacts all of us in ways we might not be aware. Bob Doppelt’s book on Transformational Resilience pinpoints that impact succinctly and offers solutions in order to build resilient communities, nations and globally. Written clearly and with great understanding for the challenges we will face whether we like it or not, the “Resilient Growth Model” allows us to explore choices and options to be fully prepared.  Resilience can be learned by the individual, the community, and for all of us having a human experience. 

Cheryl S. Sharp, MSW, ALWF, Senior Advisor for Trauma-Informed Services National Council for Behavioral Health

The planet – and all of us who ride on it – will go through the crucible of climate change in the next decades. How we respond – as individuals and societies – will shape the world to come, as surely as the rising oceans. Here's one recipe for making that response constructive and generous.

Bill McKibben, author of 'Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet'

At a time when individuals, communities, organizations and others are already struggling with the emotional impacts of stressors from climate disruption, which is only on the increase, this book is a timely intervention. With the populations with whom I work who disproportionately suffer from loss of life, livelihood, home and hearth and who suffer from cultural erosion, the teachings in this book are critical to our efforts to strengthen local resilience. Taking the reader from deep work on individual resilience to ways that organizations, communities, and society can work collectively, this is a critical resource for us all in this time of increasing climate crises.

Jacqui Patterson, Director, Environmental and Climate Justice Program, NAACP, US

While most companies are now taking action on climate change in some form, very few are actually preparing their workforce and their communities for the impacts of climate change.  Doppelt provides the first ever tool for organizations and communities to do the hard work of pursuing the type of culture we will need in an era of climate change. I hope that organizational and community leaders will heed his advice! 

Keya Chatterjee, Executive Director, US Climate Action Network

In this exceptionally important work Bob Doppelt appeals to the head and the heart as he urges us to face the science and the emotions needed to respond to climate change - and to the deeply traumatic psychological changes they bring to us individually and to society.  But he doesn’t stop there. A true teacher, he shows us that we have the capacity to channel the power of our minds, drawing from our deepest and most powerful cores – to heal our personal wounds and the planet with a renewed capacity for fundamental change through Transformational Resilience. Open the book like I did to begin an essential journey.

Dr Lise Van Susteren, Psychiatrist, Board member, Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School and the National Wildlife Federation; Co-Author: The Psychological Effects of Global Warming in the United States and Why The U.S. Mental Health Care System Is Not Adequately Prep

Bob Doppelt’s book, Transformational Resilience, provides a frank portrayal of the very serious and inevitable consequences of climate change for our communities, ourselves, and those we care about. At the same time, however, it shows the way forward – how we can use the inevitable trauma to become stronger and better. Written in a thoroughly engaging and accessible style, Transformational Resilience blends research findings, gripping examples from around the world, and well-developed personal learning exercises. The book should be required reading for college students, policy makers, and concerned citizens in all nations.

Jean Stockard, Ph.D., Professor Emerita, Department of Planning, Public Policy and Management, University of Oregon

Bob Doppelt has done it again – he has taken his climate change expertise and brought it to impacts on the human psyche – it is compelling.

Bill Bradbury, Former Secretary of State, State of Oregon

There are many ways in which climate change may harm our psychological wellbeing but, apart from a few academics and the odd insurance company, few are thinking about this in a systematic way and even fewer are doing anything about it. In his book Bob Doppelt gives us concrete frameworks and ideas to help us engage in this difficult thinking and the inevitably difficult public discourses that must follow. What’s special about this book is that, unusually, it canvasses some plausible and potentially powerful ways in which climate change may be an opportunity for growing resilience and promoting wellbeing. This important book takes a fresh, new look at how climate change will transform our lives – and how, if we’re smart, it might do so for the better.

Professor Helen L Berry, Psychiatric epidemiologist, University of Canberra, Adjunct Professor, ANU Climate Change Institute, Australian National University

Bob Doppelt’s new book, Transformational Resiliencereads like a thriller. The plot line, climate change, is packed with information, anticipation, anxiety, and hope. Extreme weather events are a threat to every part of our being, including our ability to be creative problem-solvers. Doppelt frames the issues we, the entire planet, are facing and then offers us a simple and elegant method for becoming our best selves. Doppelt himself is present in every page—smart, kind, compassionate, and wise. Climate change is upon us, and Bob Doppelt’s new book prepares us to deal with it.

Maggie Bennington-Davis, MD; Chief Medical Officer, Health Share of Oregon

Now the work to do in the face of climate chaos, and the proper uses of mind and will, become refreshingly clearer, as Bob Doppelt respects us enough to assume we want to face the music—and thereby find our greatness and a future.  I learned a lot from this excellent book and hope it will be read by millions.  

Joanna Macy, Scholar of Buddhism Founder, The Work That Connects, Author, 'Coming Back to Life: Practices to Reconnect Our Lives, Our World'

Climate related adversity is bringing us a choice: let these challenges ruin us or use them to renew our world. We can shift from seeing ourselves as victims to being members of a community who help each other prepare for and respond to loss and trauma. Bob Doppelt’s ability to provide both a broad perspective and a practical model for transformational resilience is exactly what’s needed to foster adaptability and positive growth.

Mollie Marti, JD, PhD; CEO, National Resilience Institute; Author, 'Walking with Justice'

Disasters can bring out the worst in us – fear, anger, greed – or the best – courage, generosity, compassion. Climate disruption will surely present us with events that will lead to these choice points. This book offers us the tools for not only coping in difficult times but for transforming trauma into personal and collective noble response. Transformational Resilience is an invaluable guidebook to bring out the best in us in the midst of dark times.

James Baraz, Co-founder Spirit Rock Meditation Center; co-author of Awakening Joy

Bob Doppelt's passion for raising global awareness about the impact of climate change is elegantly elucidated in his book Transformational Resilience. The book not only addresses the present and future perils of climate change, but most importantly, brings us a resiliency model intervention that can be simply implemented. In the arena of prevention, this may be one of the most important books written about climate change and how to build more resilient communities.

Elaine Miller Karas, Executive Director, Trauma Resource Institute

Doppelt has moved courageously into an area where far too little is being done – climate change preparedness – and has contributed importantly by focusing on how individuals and communities can respond to tragic unfoldings at a deep personal level.  He recognizes full well the disaster we are busily creating and points to how individuals, organizations, communities and societies can transcend despair and desperation. A very important book.  

James Gustave Speth, author of 'America the Possible'; former Dean, Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies; former Chairman, White House Council on Environmental Quality

In Transformational Resilience, Bob Doppelt greatly expands our understanding of the human costs of climate change. He clearly documents the immediate and lasting trauma experienced by those exposed to the unrelenting climate impacts. As a consequence, not just the affected individuals but also their families, organizations, and communities become less resilient to climate-related and other stresses. Such outcomes are not inevitable, however. With his "Resilient Growth” model, Doppelt demonstrates practical steps for reducing, even reversing, the effects of climate-enhanced trauma on resilience. Everybody working to understand, communicate, and reduce the risks of climate change should read this book. 

Ernie Niemi, President, Natural Resource Economics Inc.

Books about climate change are dominated by scientific forecasts of disaster, ranging from bleak to terrifying. One counter-productive result has been to freeze a vast cross-section of the public in fear, like deer caught in the headlights. Bob Doppelt’s new climate book is different. Focusing on people instead of geophysics, it offers valuable insights – gleaned from years of hands-on experience – about how to create resilient institutions that can act in the face of looming adversity. It provides the tools for us to create a new landscape of hope.

FULL VERSION Denis Hayes, President Bullitt Foundation; Coordinator, First Earth Day

Bob Doppelt has written a wonderfully useful book for developing resilience in the face of extreme weather events and climate shifts ... the resilience skills he so effectively teaches are useful for any adversities.

SHORT VERSION Glenn Schiraldi, Resilience Training International (www.ResilienceFirst.com) and the University of Maryland School of Public Health

[A]n invaluable resource for practitioners, educators, activists, community leaders, and individuals interested in enhancing our collective wellness and endurance as we meet the environmental, social, political, and spiritual challenges of the 21st century. 

 

SHORT VERSION Susan M. Koger, Professor of Psychology, Willamette University, Salem OR; co-author of 'Psychology for Sustainability'

The interventions described by Bob Doppelt in his new book offer an insightful and practical model – Resilient Growth – to expand proven approaches to address the burgeoning mental health and psychosocial maladies associated with a changing climate. This book could serve as a fundamental text in a variety of sustainability-focused courses, and constitutes an invaluable resource for practitioners, educators, activists, community leaders, and individuals interested in enhancing our collective wellness and endurance as we meet the environmental, social, political, and spiritual challenges of the 21st century. 

FULL VERSION Susan M. Koger, Professor of Psychology, Willamette University, Salem OR; co-author of 'Psychology for Sustainability'

With an exceptionally clear and powerful style, Bob Doppelt has written a wonderfully useful book for developing resilience in the face of extreme weather events and climate shifts. However, the resilience skills he so effectively teaches are useful for any adversities. For all those interested in strengthening themselves, their loved ones, and their communities, this book will be a treasured gift.

FULL VERSION Glenn Schiraldi, Resilience Training International (www.ResilienceFirst.com) and the University of Maryland School of Public Health

In Transformational Resilience Bob Doppelt has put the case for personal resilience front and centre as an important skill set for building resilience in ourselves and in our communities. This is a book of our times when our ability to change and adapt will be tested to the limit.

Naresh Giangrande Co-founder, Transition Town Totnes

I have personally found the techniques in this book really helpful in both my work for Transition Town Totnes and my private life.

Sophie Galleymore Bird, Volunteer, Transition Town Totnes, UK

Introduction: Climate disruption can be humanity’s greatest teacher 

Part I: How climate disruption will transform human relations

1. The psychological effects of climate disruption on individuals

2.  The psycho-social-spiritual impacts of climate disruption on organizations, communities, and societies

3. The imperative of building widespread capacity for transformational resilience

Part II: Presencing: The first building block of transformational resilience

4. Ground – and center yourself by stabilizing your nervous system

5. Remember – your personal strengths, resources, and social support network

6. Observe your reactions to and thoughts about the situation non-judgmentally and with self-compassion

Part III: Purposing: The second building block of transformational resilience

7. Watch For new insight and meaning in life as a result Of climate-enhanced hardships

8. Tap into the core values you want to live by in the midst of adversity

9. Harvest hope for new possibilities by making choices that increase personal, social, and environmental wellbeing

Part IV: Building transformational resilience in organizations and communities 

10. Building transformational resilience in organizations

11. Building transformational resilience in communities

12. Building transformational resilience across different cultures

Conclusion

13. No time to lose in building transformational resilience

BOB DOPPELT is Executive Director of The Resource Innovation. He is also an adjunct instructor in the Department of Planning, Public Policy and Management at the University of Oregon. 

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