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date: 21 February 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Understanding coping—the behavioral and cognitive efforts one uses to manage the demands of stressful situations—in the face of chronic and acute disability, a potentially burdensome and stressful situation, is a nuanced issue. The complimentary emerging field of positive psychology emphasizes positive emotions and traits as they relate to an individual’s capacity for resilience and happiness. The aim of this chapter is to examine processes of coping from a positive psychology perspective, with special attention paid to how certain coping styles (e.g., problem- vs. emotion-focused), positive emotion-based coping strategies (e.g., benefit-finding and optimism), and related factors (e.g., self-esteem, individual differences, and social support networks) may facilitate or impair the lives of people living with disabilities (e.g., arthritis, paraplegia). The authors discuss these constructs in the context of empirical evidence and propose directions for future research.

Keywords: positive psychology, disability, coping, self-regulation

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