Self-care and collective care for therapists (and clients) during C-19Book tickets
Wimbledon Guild Counselling Training
The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the way that real world social issues markedly impact all of our mental health and capacity to self-care. It has also demonstrated that more marginalised folks are disproportionately affected. Finally it has highlighted many ways in which organisations and communities can develop more collective – or mutual – forms of care and support in order to improve mental health, and to enable individual self-caring behaviours during such times of crisis.
Mainstream approaches to mental health tend to individualise such issues rather than recognising the social context in which they are inevitably located. We need to recognise the role of intersecting marginalisations in mental health struggles, and the ways in which social experiences such as poverty, discrimination, and the experience of trauma are highly related to psychological distress.
We also live in a wider culture which encourages the very kind of shame and self-critical thinking that’s a feature of all the most common mental health problems, and which make it very difficult to engage in self-compassion and self-care. We’re encouraged to feel fear that we might be lacking or failing in some way, and we’re sold products which claim to help us to allay those fears. Social media also encourages us to maintain the illusion of perfection online, leading to endless rounds of self-evaluation and comparison.
In a world where so many of us – and our clients – are struggling with very real social problems, it’s vitally important to acknowledge the cultural context we’re in and to resist individualising our suffering. This workshop explores trauma-informed models of interdependent self-care – or collective care – which we might consider.
● Introductions and hopes/aims for the session
● Adapting to pandemic and crisis
● Locating our distress culturally, systemically, and relationally
● Considering our needs in relation to self-care, making our plan
● Exploring systems and structures of support, developing our plan
By the end of the session participants will have:
● Reflected on their own self-care practices in the light of social understandings and current crises
● Explored how their individual distress – and capacity to self-care – is embedded within wider cultures, systems, and dynamics or privilege/oppression
● Developed a self-care plan and a sense of systems and structures of support around this