Mental health crisis at UK Universities

Mental health crisis at UK Universities

by Bill Sheate

A cry for help.....

A recent IPPR study reported in The Guardian has found suicides among UK university students at record levels (The Guardian, 2 September 2017 - Suicide is at record level among students at UK universities, study finds).

We have known for a long time about rising demand for university counselling services and a common assumption is that it is a response to rising student debt due to tuition fees and that universities need to invest more in those services.  Well, yes, they do, but the issue is far more fundamental than that on at least two different levels.......... 

Self-hypnosis half-day workshop

Self-hypnosis half-day workshop

A half-day practical Self-Hypnosis Workshop 

Saturday, 23 September 2017 from 13:30 to 17:30 (BST) - London

A half-day (4 hours) practical Self-Hypnosis Workshop that takes you a step beyond mindfulness and relaxation. No previous experience necessary, however, as this is a standalone workshop equally suitable for complete beginners and those experienced in other forms of relaxation/mindfulness. The workshop uses a cognitive behavioural, fully evidence-based (non-state) model of hypnosis........... 

Resilience Skills are Transferable Skills

Resilience Skills are Transferable Skills

by Bill Sheate

Mental Health Awareness Week 8-14 May 2017 – Resilience Skills are Transferable Skills

This week - in Mental Health Awareness Week - I’ve concluded the last of six core sessions of what is now an annual programme of resilience skills training for our one-year MSc course in Environmental Technology at Imperial College London.  I see the programme as an integral part of transferable skills training – those skills and attributes now seen as at least as important by employers as the qualifications our students leave with.  Indeed, by seeing mental health resilience skills as part of transferable skills we can begin to break down the reluctance of some to even consider going to a mindfulness or relaxation class..........

Twelve simple steps to mindfulness

Twelve simple steps to mindfulness

by Bill Sheate

Mastering mindfulness is key to reducing anxiety

Mastering mindfulness is a key technique in helping to reduce anxiety, but is surprisingly simple to do, if you understand some basic principles. It should never be a chore. Here are 12 simple steps to mindfulness: .........

Do you suffer from insomnia?

Do you suffer from insomnia?

by Bill Sheate

I was awake half the night......

Insomnia is often linked with stress, anxiety or low mood/depression, but not always.  It can exist as an ongoing chronic problem which can seem quite unresolvable, going on for many years despite numerous attempts to find a solution.  A defining feature of insomnia is the sense of having slept badly and of suffering as a result....... 

Exams - it's all about technique!

Exams - it's all about technique!

by Bill Sheate

Changing your approach

At advanced levels - especially postgraduate - exams are less about what you know and more about how you apply your knowledge and understanding to problem-based situations.  They’re not there so much to test your knowledge, as to be part of making learning possible, for example as opportunities to apply higher order learning skills like analysissynthesis and evaluation (and creativity).  There are some very simple hints and tips that can make all the difference to your exam technique, especially for essay-type questions – the whole way in which you perceive an exam, approach it, prepare for it and sit it..........

Learning, assessment and exams – a mindful approach

Learning, assessment and exams – a mindful approach

by Bill Sheate

Oh no..... exams!

For many at university, exams and deadlines become the primary focus for their approach to learning, fueled in part by an education system prior to university that benchmarks individuals throughout their school career....... Turning the whole approach around can be a much more helpful way of looking at assessments and exams.........

Understanding stress – what is it?

Understanding stress – what is it?

by Bill Sheate

What do we mean by ‘stress’ and how does it relate to ‘anxiety’?  Are they the same thing? Actually, no they’re not, but they are related.  There have been a number of approaches to understanding stress over the years, but it is Richard Lazarus’ transactional model that is the most widely accepted.  It involves three key elements:
•    a stressor, 
•    appraisal (primary and secondary), and
•    response (problem-based or emotion-based)......

Don't suffer in silence.....

Don't suffer in silence.....

by Bill Sheate

Guardian article highlights the rise in student use of counselling services

A Guardian article today  - University mental health services face strain as demand rises 50% - highlights the increasing strain upon University counselling services as demand increases. Students accessing counselling services in the Guardian sample rose from just under 25,000 five years ago to more than 37,000 in the 2014-15 academic year, a 50% rise......