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What predicts stress after adversity is not the severity of the adversity but how alone the person feels afterwards.

Meg Jay Clinical Psychologist, Associate Professor of Education, University of...

Supernormal: The Untold Story of Adversity and Resilience

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Supernormal: The Untold Story of Adversity and Resilience


Nearly 75 percent of us experience some significant adversity by the age of 20, but these experiences are often kept secret — as are our battles to overcome them. Clinical psychologist Meg Jay, author of Supernormal, tells the tale of everyday superheroes who have made a life out of dodging bullets and seeking justice, even as they hide among us as doctors, artists, entrepreneurs, lawyers, parents, teachers, activists, and more. The untold story here is not just how they do it, but also, how does it feel?

The untold story of adversity and resilience is that so many people have one (an experience where they faced adversity).
Meg Jay
What if it’s not the case that you’re abnormal, what if it’s the case that you’re supernormal? What if we don’t focus on the adversity or the bad things that have happened to you, but we focus on what you did to survive? What if we see you as not alone in the world, but actually as part of a bigger group, and in some really good company?
Meg Jay
A consistent set of studies shows that people who grow up in difficult circumstances and make it out are more likely to go into the helping professions of teaching, psychology, activism, social work, and the ministry.

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Additional Information


Meg Jay’s book “Supernormal”

The Adverse Childhood Experiences Study -AKA the Ace Study - explores the effects of childhood adversity.

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Supernormal: The Untold Story of Adversity and Resilience

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