The course has made me a real difference to me and I feel I can now look forwards instead of backwards all the time. Staff/facilitators very good and helpful.
As an alternative to individual talking therapies we also have Ways to Wellbeing Workshops which you might be offered at assessment. Some people prefer the idea of learning new skills in a group alongside other people with similar problems, this can help them to feel less alone and more supported.
- The course consists of four standalone workshops which run on a rolling basis so you can start with any of them.
- Delivered as a workshop, rather than personal therapy, so there is no need to talk about yourself or give any personal details at the sessions.
- Each workshop lasts for up to two hours (with a short break).
- In order to gain maximum benefit from the sessions it is important to attend each of the workshops.
- Attendees can choose to bring a partner or friend with them to these workshops if it would help.
- The courses are run by qualified NHS practitioners from First Step, Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust.
When we are stressed, anxious or our mood is low we will often stop doing activities. This workshop will give you an idea of how you can overcome this, stop avoiding things and get back into your normal activities.
After considering types of worry and when worry can be problematic we will give you practical ways of dealing with worry.
Change your thinking
We will focus on the links between stress and the way we think. We will look at ways you can challenge unhelpful thinking and develp more balanced thinking.
Sleep and relaxation
This workshop introduces how sleep can affect our ability to cope with stress and can impact on our mood. We present some practical solutions to improve your sleep and help you relax.
The sessions that I attended had good organisation along with a friendly welcome. The information and advice provided is helpful to me so that I can gain a greater understanding of my thoughts and behaviours. The booklets that have been delivered to me provide me helpful information on all the topics.
What gets in the way of our wellbeing?
Stress is common and we will all experience it at times. Not all stress is bad for us but when it gets out of balance it can have a negative effect. The effect may be physical (e.g. poor sleep, muscle tension), emotional (e.g. low mood, being irritable), on thinking (e.g. negative thoughts, worry excessively) or behaviour (e.g. avoid situations).
The Ways to Wellbeing course aims to give you some ideas for practical actions you can use in your everyday life to maintain your own wellbeing.
The course will introduce you to:
- Goal setting skills
- Problem solving skills
- 5 Areas approach – linking thoughts, feelings, behaviours, and physical symptoms to help identify vicious cycles that undermine wellbeing.
- Practical ideas to manage stress, worry and mood
Workshops are offered regularly across the county, please complete the online form if you are interested.
What are the workshops like?
They are about learning strategies and skills to improve your wellbeing, rather than a group therapy session. Our workshops are facilitated by two trained First Step Practitioners and are based on the principles of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
What will happen when I get there?
You will be welcomed by the workshop facilitators who will take your name and give you a workshop book and copies of the presentation. They will ask you to complete a brief questionnaire every time. The workshop will start promptly at the advertised time. At the last session, you will be asked to complete an evaluation form. This allows us to review the workshop, and make changes if we need to.
What will I have to do?
During the workshop, you will be asked to take part in some group exercises. This is because we find people learn easier when they get to try things out. You will never be asked to talk about yourself or your difficulties however, and we would never make anyone speak up that doesn’t want to.
We ask that all group participants are respectful of others on the workshop, and this means that we ask everyone to keep information within the group.
There will be work to do in between sessions and it is important to do these as regular practice will help to make the changes you want to make.
What will I have to bring?
You will be sent a questionnaire prior to the workshop starting, and will be given one to take away each session. It is important that you complete this and bring it back and hand it to one of the facilitators. Don’t worry if you forget, we will have spares. You are welcome to bring a pen and paper to make notes, but you will receive a course workbook to guide you through the workshops when you arrive. It is helpful to bring this with you every time.
Who else will be there?
There may be up to 20 people attending the workshop (including some accompanying friends or family), who will have similar problems to you. They are people who have been referred to First Step in the same way you have, and will have been assessed as suitable for the workshop. On occasion, other First Step Practitioners may attend to observe the sessions for training so they can run future workshops.
How long do the workshops run for?
Each session is up to two hours long, with a 10 minute break. The series of workshops is four sessions long, at the same day and time every fortnight.
What happens if I am late or if I can’t make it?
If you are unable to attend a workshop, we would be grateful if you let us know in advance. If you unable to make more than two of the workshops it is important to discuss this with one of the facilitators. We will start the workshops promptly, but if you are late don’t worry, try to come in quietly without disturbing others. The facilitators will be around in the break if you need to speak to them.
What if I have questions?
If you have any questions, we would be happy to hear them. You can ask questions throughout the presentation, but if you prefer you can wait until the break or the end of the session and ask then. We can’t guarantee to know the answers, but if we don’t, we will try to find out for you!