1 CBT Articles. As always, there are fascinating studies in the latest Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy Journal (January, 2019).
CBT isn’t for everyone, and Kate Hanson is comparing the effects on depression of reading two self help books – one written from a positive psychology perspective and the other using a CBT approach. Hanson finds that both have an impact on depression but makes the point that a book written using a positive psychology approach may appeal to those who have unsuccessfully tried CBT.
I like the article written by Shafran and colleagues who note that getting early help for anxiety and depression can lead to more positive outcomes. The article appeals to me because it discusses the role of what is technically called psychoeducation: helping people learn about mental health symptoms and what treatments are available and where, and destigmatising mental ill health through education.
In their study, Shafran and colleagues are interested in whether self monitoring of symptoms can lead to seeking help. It confirmed to me that I also need to better track improvements as therapy progresses – I do track progress but need to share this more effectively with the people I work with.
2 Children at Christmas. Working in children’s mental health services it has really brought it home to me how Christmas can be a time of crisis for some people. So its good to see organisations such as Young Minds doing their bit to encourage people to stay well or seek support if needbe.
3 Digital IAPT – anyone? Needs some staying power and I must confess I haven’t read every word but there is enough interesting points in this article by Mark Brown to deserve a second and probably a third read.
1 Depression types. All in the Mind is always a useful listen especially as it points us to some useful research. Included here, is an interesting discussion of research into whether talking therapies affects the brain. This is described by Professor Dalgleish, and whilst it makes for a good headline I am not entirely convinced that depression could be 1600 different things.
What I also liked about this episode is the idea that having negative thoughts isn’t always a negative thing and Dalgleish describes his research on emodiversity.
The importance of negative experiences is also picked up in this marvellous Start the Week episode where the ever present Professor Haidt makes a case for adversity as a way of facilitating resilience and maybe acceptance of diversity.
2 Teenage Depression. As someone committed to working with teenage depression, I am keen to support sharing on the topic of depression especially when it comes from the lips of young men as cited in this website.
3 Children’s Mental Health. Child Commissioner in her recent analysis makes a case for more money for children’s mental health services. Always fails to confuse me how politicians can not understand how by investing in children’s mental health now will prove such a financial and emotional cost saving in the future.
4 Need for Health workforce planning. I wish I had a pound for every time I had heard we need a long term plan for the health workforce, I wouldn’t need to work at my ripe old age. Lets hope they put some serious thinking (and action) into this one.
1 Benefits of telling your story. This neat short discussion of the importance of writing your story which got me thinking how in much of my work I encourage people to list their thoughts and even better describe some of those thoughts that seem to create difficulties in order that it invites a different perspective.
2 Teaching emotional intelligence. All the very best with this programme that encouragers children in school to manage their emotions more effectively. Much of my CBT work with children often land on the difficulties of staying with and processing complex feelings as they arise.
3 Benefits of looking after each other. A fascinating article on the search of happiness could well involve caring for other people or the better treatment of others. The work of both Kahnemann (“Thinking Fast and Slow”) and Haidt are mentioned and this has got me hunting down their work.
1 Compassionate CBT podcast. This stars the marvellous Paul Gilbert as part of a series of podcasts made available on the BABCP website make for an interesting listen …. For those who are interested.
2. Cannabis and mental health: Lancet circulated a Youtube video on a panel discussion on the legalisation of cannabis. If you can get over the technical hitches it is an interesting listen:
3 Bullying in the NHS. The financial costs of bullying reported here and when you consider the emotional impact its serious stuff. If we cant look after the professional carers how can we expect them to look after their patients.
Children and Alcohol, The Lancet makes a plea for policies to reduce access to alcohol in this article
Reading some excellent books at the moment: Puliafico & Robin’s Workbook for Kids with OCD (published by Harbinger in 2017) should prove a great resource for my work with children. It is written for parents and children and so can supplement attendance for therapy, or instead of therapy for those with milder symptoms.
I am also reading Yuval Noah Harari’s book on 21 Lessons for the 21st Century (Penguin, 2018), which is confirming the benefits of mindful meditation and especially helpful in enabling a better perspective at a time when we are bombarded with so much questionable information.
1 Andrew Marr’s Radio 4 (UK) Programme “Start the Week” is always delivers an interesting listen and this weeks was no exception. An interview with author Yuval Noah Hurari who wrote *Sapiens” and made a strong case for the importance of emotional intelligence and mindfulness. Andrew Marr in considering Hurari’s work concluded that mental health was far from just being on the periphery but was now one of the most crucial areas to work in (my words). https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0000m7b
“Start the week” today (8.10.2018) is compelling listening for those interested in personality and its testing and will reward being looked for and listened to.
3 This Radio 4 Programme on the “Anatomy of Loneliness” has its heart in the right place and balances this alongside the stats which makes for a fascinating blend: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p06mflm5
1 Excellent workshop organised by Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust on #PTSD and children. I am certainly going to buy the book that provided the model covered: “Post Traumatic Stress Disorder: CBT with Children and Adolescents” by Smith et al…. despite its date.
1 A piece in the “Conversation” on teaching skills to young people to help them stay mentally well. Couldn’t agree more. As someone now working with children and adolescents, it has confirmed my beliefs that we need to do our best to respond to early signs of poor mental health and equip our young people with the skills to manage low moods and anxiety: