Learn how to manage and stop people self harming
Learn proven techniques so you can confidently safely and effectively treat clients who have self destructive behaviours.
Self harm is on the increase
In the UK, we have the highest rates of self harm in Europe and the rates are massively on the increase, particularly in young people, The Samaritans have shown that one in ten young people are self harming.
Therapists say working with clients who self harm is stressful
Self Harm has been reported by health care professionals as the area of work they find most stressful and literature highlights professional’s feelings of helplessness and fear when faced with someone who is willfully injuring their body. On a human level it is very natural to feel bewilderment in situations were people are inflicted severe injury on themselves, expert Emily Gajewski says’ I believe it can be argued that the mental process behind self harm is actually common to us all, given sufficient stress in our lives.‘
Most of us self harm to some extent: Emily goes on to say ‘How many of us have gone for a fast and dangerous drive ‘for the buzz,’ or to relieve tension. Or drunk another glass of wine when we already feel dizzy and sick just to ‘get out of it.’ Or even eaten another slice of chocolate cake when we are already uncomfortably full and our weight is causing health problems. Any of this sound familiar?
Changes in brain chemistry can make people ‘addict’ to self harming
It is well recognized that changes in the chemistry of our brain can give us temporary relief from difficult emotions. In every day circumstances, when your body is injured a surge of chemicals are released to bring a sense of calm. Endogenous opiates and serotonin are released when a person ‘cuts’ and this brings a temporary sense of relaxation and release from tension. In times of desperation we can be drawn to any activity that does this, despite the harm that may cause us.
High stress can leave you more open to self harming
Realizing that we can all move up and down the ‘self harm continuum’ depending on the amount of stress in our lives; allows us to empathize with the reasons why some people find themselves habitually self harming. We can then begin to offer a non judgmental, genuinely supportive approach to our clients who are in the clutch of this seductive and destructive cycle.
Practical steps to help people who self harm brings confidence to therapists
Drawing from years of working with people who self harm. Emily concludes ‘its not just about trying to immediately stop the self harming behaviour as that can cause more harm than good in the first instance. At first all national guidelines point to looking at practical ways in which you as a therapist can enable your client to cope with the emotions that may lead to self harming.’
So therapists need to understand the self harm continuum and know how to
- assess what approach will be best for the client
- remain empathic and non- judgmental
- teach clients relaxation techniques
- find practical skills to pass to the client so they can de-escalate problem thinking patterns
- help them find beneficial and meaningful ways in which to get their human needs met
These are all part of the steps that Emily teaches to help therapists become more confident and effective in dealing with people who self harm.
Helping people move from self harm to self belief
It is common for therapists to feel powerless in the face of self destructive behaviours. So you may find yourself:-
- avoiding clients or feeling confused about the best way forward.
- You may also have a stack of questions that run through your mind like:
- ‘Is it best to get my client talking openly about the self harming activity?
- Will that increase the client’s anxiety and will that make them self harm more?’
- ‘Do we aim to stop straight away?’ and
- ‘How do I keep this person safe?’
You need not worry like that again as this workshop has been specifically designed to equip you with the understanding and skills to confidently safely and effectively work with people who self harm. After this workshop,
You will gain
- A greater understanding of self-harming behaviours and why they occur.
- Increased empathy for your clients and increased confidence in your ability to help them.
- Powerful techniques specifically tailored to take account of the most up to date research and national guidance on self harm.
- Strategies to engage with people who once seemed unreachable
- The ultimate Do’s and Don’ts drawn from research and direct advice from people who have moved on from severe self harm.
- A film of a taped interview of two women who have dramatically moved on from self harm.
- Time to practice some of the essential skills you will need to help people work effectively with self harm.
- Full course notes
As the U.K now has the highest rate of reported self harm in Europe, particularly in young people. It is more important than ever for people like you to develop skills that demystify the behavior, bring hope and a way out from the anxiety-self harm loop.
Contact one of our friendly team to book on firstname.lastname@example.org
Your trainer will be EMILY GAJEWSKI (Nee Lindsey Clark) Bsc (Hons) Occupational Therapy, FHGI, Human Givens Dip, Advanced Human Givens Dip.
Emily works in the NHS as an Occupational Therapy Clinical Specialist, currently within in a Community Mental Health Team, providing support to adults with severe or enduring mental health difficulties. She has over twelve years’ experience of helping people move on with their lives in a wide range of settings; ranging from Psychiatric Intensive Care Units to supporting people in their own homes.
For four years she worked within a multi-disciplinary team developing a Specialised Women’s Mental Health Service. The service was based on the results of a research project that fed into the Department of Health’s implementation guidance for Women’s Mental Health services and has achieved excellent results working with women with complex needs. It was recently independently reviewed by the Health Care Commission, who commented on its “impressive” quality of work – especially in its pioneering approach to positive risk management of self-harming behaviours.
Emily has published articles on clinical guidance in a variety of National Journals and contributed a major chapter on her speciality of self harm in the book An Idea in Practice (2007, Human Givens Publishing) which was shortlisted The MIND Book of The Year 2007. She currently lectures on the subject of self harm nationally in collaboration with Mindfields College, teaching the Human Givens Approach.
Emily has a private therapy practice at home and also provides professional supervision to other therapists. She has a strong believe in the ‘mind- body connection’ and takes a holistic approach to her work and her own life, prioritising physical health through paying attention to nutrition, exercise and fun!
Contact one of our friendly team to book at email@example.com