Share students started a short course on wellbeing with Talk Wandsworth this month.
As part of the programme, which will be ongoing until December, our students will take part in sessions on self-care and relaxation, how to overcome anger and irritability, how to manage stress and improving self-confidence.
This is a great opportunity for some of our Independent Living Skills students to gain access to sessions delivered by NHS professionals as part of a nationwide effort to promote the accessibility of talking therapies.
So far, our students have shown great interest and enthusiasm for the sessions and have been active in participating in them and talking about their sense of wellbeing within a structured and therapeutic environment.
Coping with Stress
The latest session focused on 'Coping with Stress', during which our students played a stress game to identify situations and decide whether they caused them stress or not. They also learned about the physical responses to stress and how it affects the body.
During the session, our students learned about N.U.T.S. triggers of stress and how to deal with them, such as eating well, learning new skills, talking about your feelings, keeping physically active and asking for help. N.U.T.S. characteristics – that is things that can cause stress – are defined as:
- N - novelty; something new
- U - unpredictability; no way of knowing it could occur
- T - threat to the ego; feeling your competence is questioned
- S - sense of control; feeling you have little or no control in a situation
Our students were then taught the technique of 'Grounding', which involves carrying out a 5-4-3-2-1 exercise to help people get through difficult periods of stress. This exercise comprises:
- Describing 5 things you see in the room
- Naming 4 things you can feel
- Naming 3 things you hear right now
- Naming 2 things you can smell right now
- Naming 1 good thing about yourself
The aim of this exercise is to help people feel calmer when carried out in moments of stress or panic.
What our students say about the sessions
"It was really good – stay calm and relaxed, don't get angry or upset." Chris
"If I'm stressed, I put on the TV or have a bubble bath to calm me down". Veneshia
"Relaxing. We looked at the pictures". Harish
"The session is fantastic – we learnt what anger is about and I listened to every word. I learned about being angry – it's not good, I try and be calm and slow down, be happy". Angela
"It was very good, when you get down you can relax and breathe in, take it easy, it's good for you and your body. You mustn't get upset, breathe slowly". Doris
"The session was about how to breathe and count to 10. It keeps me calm listening to slow music". Amal
"Watching my cartoons helps." Michael