One of my main areas of research is the relationship between Stoic philosophy and modern psychology. I’m particularly interested in the promise that Stoicism appears to hold as a form of what psychologists today call “resilience training”. As we’ll see, there are some interesting data emerging from initial research on Stoicism as a form of resilience training.
Emotional or psychological resilience basically refers to our ability to endure stressful events, without being overwhelmed by them. Through cognitive and behaviour skills training we can improve resilience and prepare ourselves to cope better with future adversity.
In a sense, Stoicism has long been virtually synonymous with resilience. Indeed, one modern expert, Michael Neenan, refers to the Stoic teacher Epictetus as the “patron saint of the resilient”.