Mental Health Training

Mental Health

MHFA England Anniversary Conference: An Inspirational Day! By Jane McNeice

Posted by on 16 Nov, 2017 in Mental Health |

MHFA England Anniversary Conference: An Inspirational Day! By Jane McNeice

Having suffered a couple of months of ‘bloggers block’ and not feeling inspired to write, I have today found the ink in my pen. I had what was an amazing day with other delegates celebrating the 10th Anniversary of Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England in Birmingham yesterday, and I now feel an overwhelming urge to write about my personal highlights and how inspired I feel to continue the work that is raising mental health literacy. The day was hosted by the lovely ITV news presenter Sameena Ali-Khan. Sameena did a fantastic job of presenting and capturing the stories that were shared. Arriving at the National Conference Centre in Birmingham, I started my day by visiting the market place of MHFA partners, including Place2Be, Street Games, Royal British Legion, and various others. I have to say my purse has taken a substantial hit following a visit to the on-line ‘Dept. Store for the Mind’ since I got home! The Mind Matters offices will look great with the new pictures depicting mental health and wellbeing, and I do hope my son-in-law appreciates his new tea towel – my daughter and son-in-law have an aversion to washing the pots so I thought the tea towel might provide some inspiration to them too. I then made my way for coffee and a saunter, at which point I spotted a familiar face in the crowd. I embarrassingly did the look, look away, look back, hope she doesn’t think I’m a stalker, shall I ask if it’s her, maybe not? After this stop start greeting I found that yes in fact it was the lovely Satveer Nijjar, which left me positively star struck, and for Satveer, perhaps a little put on the spot since she was trying desperately to eat her cake while I bumbled my excitement to her. As an instructor who delivers MHFA on a weekly basis, and who often uses Satveer’s film when covering the topic of self-harm, this was a long overdue meeting, and someone I had especially hoped would be at the conference. I’ve even had course delegates in the past who have met her prior to attending the MHFA training. At this point I thought my day had peaked, oh no, not even the start (sorry Satveer!). Poppy Jaman, feeling star struck again! This was the first time I’ve had the opportunity to meet this amazing lady in the 9 years that I’ve been delivering MHFA courses, and she completely fulfilled my expectations. It was fantastic to hear Poppy highlight how MHFA England started with humble surroundings, a small amount of staff capacity, and its growth into the movement that it has become today. What an inspiring lady and leader, and long may her work continue. After discussions with another instructor at my table during break about her new role as an Associate trainer, and talking about the opportunities this provides, I was then introduced to the inspiring narrative that is the story of Jonny Benjamin and Neil...

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Keep quiet and carry on – The silent menace in the nation’s offices, by DPG

Posted by on 26 Oct, 2017 in Mental Health |

Keep quiet and carry on – The silent menace in the nation’s offices, by DPG

58% of UK wouldn’t be comfortable telling their manager about mental health issues. A shocking amount of UK workers have little faith in their employer’s ability to support issues such as mental health, stress and anxiety, a study by CIPD course providers, DPG Plc., has found. The study (which can be viewed in full here alongside a guide to creating a more inclusive workplace culture) found that a worrying 85% of UK workers thought that there was a stigma attached to mental health issues and stress in the workplace. This may be the root cause for the 58% that wouldn’t be comfortable telling their manager if they were suffering from a mental health issue. Compounding this is the finding that just 20% of UK workers thought their manager was fully equipped to support mental health, stress and anxiety issues in the workplace. More than a quarter of respondents (26%) had taken a day off work due to stress and mental health issues and lied about the reason. The findings highlight a disturbing culture that may be leaving vulnerable workers without the help they need, through fear of appearing weak. Paul Drew, managing director at DPG said “These findings highlight a need for change in the workplace, and an increase in how visible support in the workplace is. The problem is that, whilst the support networks may well exist, it seems they’re being drastically underused because people fear looking ineffective, weak or compromised.” According to mental health charity Mind’s resources*, “Ignoring the mental health of your staff comes at a high price. And will only make problems worse. Reduced productivity costs UK businesses up to £15.1 billion a year… [and] stress and other mental health problems are the second biggest cause of work absence, accounting for 70 million lost working days every year.” Paul Drew continues, “The nation has come a long way when it comes to creating an inclusive and supportive society, but there’s still work to be done. Managers need to create an atmosphere of trust and respect, so that workers are never scared or unable to reveal their issues. To do this, managers themselves need to be given the skills they need to tackle sensitive issues effectively and with tact – that comes from HR and leadership teams.” Key findings from DPG’s survey: 58% of UK workers wouldn’t be comfortable telling their manager if they were to suffer from a mental health issue. Only 20% thought their manager was fully equipped to support mental health issues in the workplace. 85% thought there was a stigma attached to mental health issues and stress in the workplace. More than a quarter (26%) had taken a day off work due to stress/mental health issues and lied about the reason.  Women were more likely tell their boss they had a different illness if they took a day off for stress/mental health issues. 18-24-year olds were the most likely to lie about the reason for needing time off in cases of stress...

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3 Simple Tools to Boost your Confidence, By Sully Ali

Posted by on 22 Aug, 2017 in Mental Health |

3 Simple Tools to Boost your Confidence, By Sully Ali

This blog is going to show you 3 simple and quick tools / methods you can use to boost your confidence. All of these things are quick boosts that you can do to help boost your confidence when you need it, and the more you use them the stronger your confidence will get in the long term, too. They will only take a few minutes to do, but none of them are magic / permanent solutions if all you ever do is use them once for 3 minutes. For best results you should practice them on an ongoing basis or use them at least once a day, and as you keep doing this the changes will really start to build and spill over into your every day life. Enough waffle anyway – here are my top 3 confidence building tools: Positive Affirmations: You are probably sick of hearing about affirmations, but have you actually committed to doing them seriously for any real period of time, or have you thought about doing them, or done them once and dismissed them? Affirmations can sound a little too good to be true, or a little too simple to actually work, but sometimes we look for the magic bullet, the “all powerful” technique, and ignore the simple things which really work if you stick to them. I have been as guilty as anyone of neglecting affirmations, but after really giving them a go I have made some real, and lasting changes in my life. If you are new to affirmations then as a basic definition they are phrases that you repeat to yourself, about yourself, to tell yourself something is true – the idea being that after you have repeated these affirmations over and over you will change your self perceptions, beliefs, and actually become more confident, more motivated, more positive etc. Here are a few possible affirmations for improving confidence: I am naturally confident and outgoing I feel confident in all situations I exude confidence when meeting new people I feel naturally confident both inside and out, at all times All affirmations should be in the first person, and positive, and if you need to you can find various affirmations lists on-line, but I would recommend writing your own – this way they are much more personal. A good way to do this is to brainstorm how you would think and feel about yourself if you were more confident and use these phrases as your affirmations. Usage is simple – repeat your list of affirmations a couple of times on a morning, and then again before you go to bed. If you actually commit to this and do this every day for a month you should notice a real difference. Anchoring: This is one of my favourite quick techniques ever, probably because of it’s simplicity. Anchoring can be a really effective way to change your attitude, beliefs, and even behaviour. Anchoring is basically a way of tying an emotion of feeling to a physical action, and...

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The Kilted Rogue Runner, By Jason Nelson

Posted by on 6 Aug, 2017 in Mental Health |

The Kilted Rogue Runner, By Jason Nelson

My name is Jason Nelson aka, ‘The Kilted Rogue Runner’. I am 45 years old, and I live with my family here in Perth Western Australia and this is my journey: I am a Royal Navy veteran and an ex UK and WA Police Officer, I survive Depression, Anxiety, PTSD and associated issues. I’m grateful that I have personally suffered because it has given me the insight into the power of sharing my story to help others. During my life there have been many short stories of trauma that I have been exposed to, and the way I used to deal with them was by locking them away on my sub consciousness bookshelf. Sadly these traumas include being sexually assaulted by a person in a position of trust when I was young, active service in the Royal Navy, the tragic death of a dear friend on my stag night, the devastating loss of my Grandmother, to responding to numerous horrific incidents during a distinguished policing career with Cheshire Police in the UK and here with WA Police. For me, my policing career is from where most of the trauma I have endured still affects me to this day. These include seeing numerous dead bodies, traumatic scenes, delivering death messages, horrific road traffic collisions, observing autopsies and working on covert policing teams in high risk situations. While working on a covert policing team here in Australia my supervising officers, attempted to have me removed from the team for under performing by setting me up to fail during operations. This was happening within two years of moving to Australia and trying to settle my family in to our new life down under. Over a period of 6 months I became severely depressed and as a result I contemplated, planned and attempted suicide. On numerous occasions, in the darkest of that time, I placed the barrel of my loaded service Glock 27 pistol in my mouth with my finger on the trigger and gently squeezed. I was a mess. Thankfully with the help and support of my family I found the strength to report what was happening to me and sought the professional the help I needed, which, along with distance running helped me become mentally fit again. My roller coaster of a journey continued about 3 years ago I underwent surgery for a routine hernia repair, shortly after surgery I suffered a delayed reaction to the anaesthetic and my heart went from a resting 50bpm in my sleep to over 160bpm, the crash team was called and they worked frantically to reduce my heart rate as they readied the defibrillator to shock my heart back to normal rhythm. Unfortunately for me this was the event was the trigger point to all of the trauma short stories falling off my sub conscious bookshelf and reappearing in the fore front of my mind once more. I didn’t understand the symptoms and struggled to cope with what was happening to me, the flash backs,...

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Cancer Survivor Launches Much Needed Mental Health Innovation! By Malcolm Watson

Posted by on 24 Jul, 2017 in Mental Health |

Cancer Survivor Launches Much Needed Mental Health Innovation! By Malcolm Watson

Cancer Survivor Launches Much Needed Mental Health Innovation The Discus Traffic Light System© Launch Date Monday July 17th 2017.  After surviving two brain haemorrhages and then cancer all within 12 months, Leicestershire based entrepreneur Malcolm Watson then tackled the mental health problems that had clouded his entire adult life. And now he is helping others with similar issues. Following years of suffering stress, anxiety, depression and varying levels of addiction, Malcolm used a unique blend of meditation and mindfulness styled training to create a simple but very effective method of dealing with these problems as and when they arose. The results for himself were so empowering that he decided to trial the system with several friends whom he knew may benefit. These trials were further extended, due to social media contacts, and the results proved to be conclusive with a 100% success rate that saw all participants experience major improvements to their mental health problems. Malcom has now taken the monumental step of deciding to self-finance the final stages of the project, bringing his innovative approach to the millions of sufferers that he knows his system can help. The Discus Traffic Light System© is a guided self-help leaflet that is supported by an easy to follow, plastic credit card sized reminder that acts to remind the user how to approach, amongst other things, anxiety and panic attacks and then regain control over them within minutes, all without the help (or hindrance) of large books or phone apps. By nature of its size, the credit card reminder is both fully portable and very discrete. Malcolm explains; “Self-help books are seeing increased sales, year on year and yet the majority do not ever get fully read or the help offered implemented. Apart from the waste of money, the waste of effort and the feeling of helplessness felt by some people using these books, the books are mostly achieving nothing for the readers. This was a major factor behind my reason to create a very simple to use and fully transportable system that provides instant and ongoing help for people. Keeping the price point to the equivalent of a cup of coffee was also important as I wanted people to be able to purchase without too much concern over the financial investment. Special packages will be available for educational establishments and employers wishing to utilise or implement the system with their students and / or employees.” The Discus Traffic Light System© is the first of many innovative support tools and programmes that Discus will be launching and / or announcing in 2017. Malcolm can be contacted directly for quotes, interviews, appearances etc via: 07491 995 999 ceo@discus-uk.org  ...

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What Can The UK Government Do To Cultivate Good Mental Health?

Posted by on 17 Jul, 2017 in Mental Health |

What Can The UK Government Do To Cultivate Good Mental Health?

According to statistics revealed by mentalhealth.org.uk 65% of people in the UK have experienced a mental health problem in their lives at one time or another. What’s more revealing is that just a mere 13% of us say that we live with high levels of good mental health in our daily lives. These stats suggest there is much to do to improve the state of our mental wellbeing, but to turn things around will require help from the powers that be, namely Government. But is the UK Government doing enough to ensure that current and future societies have good mental health. And if you believe they could more, what action can be taken to fix this prevailing problem? We reached out to some of the leading voices on mental health issues to get their opinion.   Judith Haire, Publisher “Good mental health is essential for us all and one in four of us will experience a mental health problem. The Government needs to include mental health on the school curriculum and make sure mental health support is available in every workplace. Workable budgets are needed for the NHS, with budgets for talking therapies and to fund more mental health inpatient beds. GPs must be fully trained to assess and treat mental health problems and crisis teams must be funded so they can respond much more quickly to people in need.” Twitter @JudithHaire   Martha Roberts, UK Health Writer/Mental Health blogger “There are so many areas of mental health that could do with extra funding (or, at the very least, having funding cuts reversed). I would be particularly keen to see more money going into provision for children and young adults – and that means people heading towards 30 whose lives are complicated by more pressures on this age group than ever before. I would also love to see more community provision for people with mental health who are otherwise ‘high functioning’, raising families or holding down jobs but who nevertheless could do with support and possibly a place to get advice or ongoing help.” www.mentalhealthwise.com   Courtenay Young, International Journal of Psychotherapy Editor “Simple mental health techniques should be taught in primary schools – as essential tools for living. These could include: centering, grounding and re-balancing techniques; breathing techniques – especially for anxiety; basic relaxation techniques; simple mindfulness practice; listening & giving feedback; making ‘I’ statements; greater expression of feelings – particularly for boys; positive self-assertion – particularly for girls; practicing confrontation without aggression; self-soothing techniques; etc.” http://ijp.org.uk/   Julie Seeney, Blogger “One of the most important things the government should do to cultivate good mental health is to teach about mental health in schools.  We currently teach children about looking after themselves physically through a good diet and exercise and I think we should do the same for mental health. This might help provide the next generation growing up some life skills to help them if they themselves experience mental health problems.” Twitter @mummyitsok Facebook https://www.facebook.com/mummyitsok/   Sophie Mei, Blogger “We need...

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