Positive Mental Health Training

Facilitated one day workshop on Positive Mental Health on 20 October 2011 for the counselors at SOS Children’s Villages Nepal, National Training Centre, Kavre. There were 18 participants working as counselors in various parts of the country in SOS villages.

In the workshop, the participants were introduced to the key concepts of psychosocial well-being, positive mental health and positive psychology in the first half of the day. In the latter half of the day, the key concepts of Solution-Focused Therapy were introduced theoretically and Standard Format of First Session was demonstrated through the role play. The training was well-received by the participants and they expressed their gladness to learn the new technique of Solution-Focused Intervention which was introduced in Nepal with the help of Claudia Van Zuiden this year earlier in April.

Contents were mostly theoretical including the research findings related to positive psychology. Some participants raised the doubts regarding some of the results which I think is good skepticism. Psychological research related to positive psychology is yet to begin in Nepal. Some videos from ted.com were also shown which were related to positive psychology and design & happiness.

The praiseworthy matter about SOS Children Villages is that they are already working with positive approach that includes family model which promotes positive mental health. In a home, 10 children stay together with a mother. All the children become brothers and sisters taking care of one another. Nabin sir took me around the village and I saw a very good nurturing environment for the children with very good physical facilities for shelter and play. They also have a school inside in which the children from outside community can also get admitted and study. This helps me in socialization of the children and their reintegration into the society when they grow up to become independent.

I would like to thank Mr. Nabin Bajracharya, Assistant Director and psychologist in SOS Nepal, Mr. Udaya Aryal, director, SOS National Training Centre, Ranjan dai and all the participants.


Martin Seligman on Positive Psychology

Martin Seligman is the founder of positive psychology, a field of study that examines healthy states, such as happiness, strength of character and optimism.

Martin Seligman founded the field of positive psychology in 2000, and has devoted his career since then to furthering the study of positive emotion, positive character traits, and positive institutions. It’s a fascinating field of study that had few empirical, scientific measures — traditional clinical psychology focusing more on the repair of unhappy states than the propagation and nurturing of happy ones. In his pioneering work, Seligman directs the Positive Psychology Center at the University of Pennsylvania, developing clinical tools and training the next generation of positive psychologists.

His earlier work focused on perhaps the opposite state: learned helplessness, in which a person feels he or she is powerless to change a situation that is, in fact, changeable. Seligman is an often-cited authority in this field as well — in fact, his is the 13th most likely name to pop up in a general psych textbook. He was the leading consultant on a Consumer Reports study on long-term psychotherapy, and has developed several common pre-employment tests, including the Seligman Attributional Style Questionnaire (SASQ).

source: ted.com

Presentation on Positive Mental Health


Click Full screen & view it large.

This was the presentation I did in the yesterday’s program. With the upcoming World Mental Health Day on Oct 10, a lot of people in the next few days will be talking and discussing about mental health but being focused upon mental disorders and their solutions. I wanted to highlight the taken-for-granted aspect of mental health. We seem to be obsessed with just the fixing problems ignoring what is right & working and making it better.

“Psychological science and practice has to be as concerned with strength as with weakness; as interested in building the best things in life as in repairing the worst; and as concerned with making  the lives of normal people fulfilling as with healing pathology”.
(Christopher Peterson, 2008 in The Good Life {psychology today blog})