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Coping Skills – What Are They?

You have good coping skills when you are able to ‘tolerate’ problems or difficult situations without them having any significant negative impact on your life, or on your ability to ‘function normally’.

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People with effective coping skills may be described as ‘resilient’ to problems. This does not mean that they do not encounter the same life challenges as everybody else but rather that when they do occur that they have less impact on them.

Resilience is a complex phenomenon and it is determined by a wide range of bio-psycho-social factors but more importantly, anybody can learn to develop better coping skills and become more resilient.

Because our experience of life is completely subjective and individually constructed (known as perceptual constructivism), people will generally develop coping skills or coping mechanisms consistent with their internal beliefs and experiences leading to coping mechanisms that may make things worse rather then better! These are known as ‘maladaptive coping skills’.

Maladaptive Coping Skills

Maladaptive copings skills are those strategies or mechanisms that people ‘develop’ that work on one level (what we call ‘coherent’) but on another level lead to more significant problems. It is this paradox that gives rise to the definition ‘maladaptive’.

Alcohol abuse and drug abuse are classic examples of a maladaptive coping skills as they almost certainly allow a person to ‘escape’ from uncomfortable feelings (‘it works’) but generally lead to more significant associated problems as a result.

The same is generally true with self-harming strategies (like cutting) as it allows the self-harmer to ‘externalise’ the uncomfortable internal feelings and provides a way of coping. Of course, this invariably leads to more significant problems.

Maladaptive coping skills usually arise due to not knowing about more useful strategies or because there is little choice about what can be done practically.

Maladaptive strategies may also exist because they ‘made sense’ when they were originally ‘created’ (in childhood for example) but are no longer relevant to the life ‘context’ today. In many cases these unhelpful mechanisms continue to be ‘utilised’ as they have become ‘habitual’.

Improving Your Coping Skills

Here at Tranceform Psychology we have been helping people to develop a range of coping skills and strategies using our course of beliefs-based CBT which is a psycho-educational process that helps a person develop self-insight through understanding their core (limiting) beliefs and how they may be leading to limiting paradigms, unhelpful thinking or thought processes.

It also teaches a person a range of new and better adapted coping skills that build greater resilience to problems and challenges.

Taking place over 10 weeks (one hour per week) and structured around a workbook, our course can help you to make significant and sustainable changes to your perceptual understanding of the world around you.

Common Problems Where Coping Skills Can be Useful

Click on any of these pages to read more about coping with specific problems.

Transform Your Thinking & Develop Better Coping Skills

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If you’re committed to improving our coping skills then we highly recommend following either our Advanced Tranceformental CBT programme with Paul, or Joan.

Tranceformental CBT is available as Online Therapy if required

The Tranceformental programme is a highly successful & pragmatic psychological training course, run over 10 sessions, that will teach you everything you need to know to understand your problem, identify how unhelpful thinking and limiting beliefs might be reinforcing the issue, and then show you how to make any changes to your unhelpful thinking styles or maladaptive safety behaviours that you may have developed as part of your coping strategies.

Our Tranceformental CBT programme is an evidence-based, research supported approach used by mental health practitioners around the World.

Initial Consultations to Discuss Coping Skills

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We offer all prospective clients an initial consultation to discuss your coping skills prior to commencing any treatment plans.

The consultation is free and last around 50 minutes

Why not drop us an e-mail to find out if we can help before arranging your initial assessment or, if you prefer, leave us a message on our Facebook page: facebook.com/tranceformational/ and we’ll get back to you to arrange a mutual date and time.

During this consultation we will discuss the various options that are available to you and make a considered recommendation based on your individual personal circumstances.

Initial consultations are also available as part of our online therapy service.

At TranceForm Psychology we recognise the importance of the therapeutic relationship in helping people to bring about effective change, so its important to be able to ‘meet’ to discuss our change programmes BEFORE proceeding.

Our policy is to help people make a fully balanced & considered decision about undertaking work with us, including both the financial and personal implications.

For most mental health problems we recommend following our 10 session Tranceformental CBT Programme to overcome a wide range of mental health and behavioural problems.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is a proven, evidence-based form of mental health counselling for developing a fundamental understanding of the dynamics of your problem, but also for learning new coping skills and strategies for sustainable change over your life.

The full course costs £795 which you can pay for on our fees page.

Tranceformental CBT is available On-line as well as a one-to-one format in the clinic.

Visit Online Counselling for more details.

Contact Paul Lee BSc. MSc. MIAEBP

Read about Paul

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Hi, I have both Bachelor's and Master's degrees in Psychology & specialise in the following therapeutic modalities:

Tranceformental CBT

Life Coaching

Psychodynamic Therapy

Call me on 07434 776125

or e-mail me on:


Contact Joan Lee D. Hyp.

Read about Joan

Hypnotherapist Joan Lee in her clinic

I specialise in the following therapies:


Brain Working Recursive Therapy

Analytical Therapy

I also offer a complete programme which combines mindfulness, mediation and hypnotherapy

Complete Wellness Programme

Call Joan on: 07434 776504



Want to Find Out More? Then Get in Touch Today.

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Mobile Joan: 07434 776504

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Private Mental Health Counselling, Online Counselling & Applied Psychology in Wolverhampton, Wombourne, West Midlands, Staffordshire, Shropshire, Worcestershire, Dudley, Kingswinford, Bridgnorth, Telford, Shrewsbury, West Bromwich and Birmingham since 2009.

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Our online therapy sessions are conducted using Zoom secure connections and last around one hour.

Single sessions of mental health counselling cost £90 and our 10 session Tranceformental CBT programme is £795.

For more information e-mail: paul@tranceformpsychology.com

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What Our Clients Say


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About Tranceform Psychology


Paul Lee BSc MSc Tranceform Psychology


Joan Lee DHP MIAEBP Tranceform Psychology


Dr. Justina Somal BPS