This lady suffered from anxiety and a sense of isolation due to a poor social networks and the responsibility for caring for her husband. She had not been to the GP regarding her own health in over a year. There were previous mental health issues including self-harm and low self-esteem.
The first appointment identified Sally’s SMART goal which was to try a new mode of transport as trains can increase her social anxiety. Go on a plane to Exeter to see her family in April.
Sally worked together with her Wellbeing Worker to ensure she was prepared for the flight. They discussed various coping strategies such as distraction techniques, relaxation podcasts. Sally made an appointment with her GP so she could discuss her medication concerns and review. The actions taken allowed Sally to start to prepare herself to take the bus into St Annes square to give her some respite from her caring role.
Following the initial appointment some mini goals were identified:
• Attend ‘Crafternoon’ with friend in March
• Visit a supermarket for groceries
• Continue with creative hobbies i.e. making soap for presents
• Consider Volunteering
• Enquire about being a judge at the ‘Rat Conventions’ in future
Sally had not considered a health and social voluntary role previously however feels this would perfectly compliment her caring personality. She worked together with her Wellbeing Worker to explore different options such as do-it.org website, Blackpool Volunteer Centre and CVS. They also explored various community groups i.e. Women’s Institute and Sally was encouraged to attend a group as well as using her online support networks i.e. Ladies with Legions. Sally was signposted to holistic therapies and ICHER complementary medicine centre. Signposted to Mindfulness websites online. Discussed eating habits and routine, gave food diary, signposted to Reiki.
Sally felt the SWEMWEBS question about ‘how optimistic you feel about the future’ really woke her up and reminded her that she “had to start living her life”. Overcoming Sally’s fears of travelling on public transport helped Sally to feel confident in leaving the house. Discussing her concerns and coping strategies helped Sally to recognise her strengths and desire to make changes.
Following Sally’s appointments she decided she would like to regain some independence and confidence and learn to drive. She explored the MS Society and her Wellbeing Worker provided her with a support letter to enable her to apply for the Carers grant towards the cost of her driving lessons. Sally was anxious about this so they looked at local driving schools, and Sally decided to contact a female instructor who she might be more comfortable with.
At the final session Sally felt empowered to start volunteering with people with acquired communication disorders and has enquired in Blackpool with Headway.
SWEMWBS – 25 = 32 % increase) / Get The Most Out of Life Tool – 32 =19 % increase
Sally says, “The support I have been provided with has changed my life. I did not know there was any emotional support available for Carers and now feel like I can start making changes. I have explored alternative techniques to deter me from self-harming. I feel my confidence has grown by meeting my goals and having someone to talk to. I am already seeing improvements in my wellbeing from the changes to my diet and know who to ask for support if I am feeling low.”