“There is the thought that, rather than curing ‘disorders’, we are repairing ruptured disconnections and enabling reconnection: with ourselves, with those close to us, with our ‘tribes’ or communities, and beyond that to a wider whole.” Yep, this is it, really!
I’m forever grateful for Talk for Health for getting me really started on this journey five and a half years ago. Among the most valuable experiences I got through this social enterprise were:
Experiencing a real sense of give and take, that emotionally nutritious conversations can indeed be had with “regular” people, that I’m neither too much nor not enough. It’s the beginning of the chipping away of toxic shame. The “equal time for everyone and no interrupting” structure really helped me too.
Finding a way to self-compassion: After feeling deep compassion for other people time and time again, I eventually recognised the double standards I held for myself, decided to stop that, and started talking to myself the same way I would to all these other people.
The week-long therapeutic drama workshop on suicide and suicide prevention: Wow, what an impactful experience.
Training to be a trainer, just before the pandemic hit: The training experience was so nourishing, it even got me thinking, “Hey, maybe I actually like speaking in front of a group, when it comes to stuff that I actually care about!” Without this experience, I don’t think I would’ve started my studies in counselling and coaching when I moved back to Hong Kong during the pandemic.
One thing led to another, and not only am I in great psychological health now, having done a lot of trauma recovery and integration, I’m consistently able to build and maintain quality connections and help others do the same through my work as a coach and as a trainee therapist.
I was one of the participants in Dr Liana Chase’s research project in October 2023 and was glad to hear other people’s stories and learn a bit about other lay counselling initiatives in other parts of the world. Looking forward to reading the research in the future!