Madara Hall - Marinela

Self-esteem, social skills and resilience in adult mental health

Target Audience: cognitive behavioural psychotherapists and trainees at beginner and moderate level of experience.


The content of the workshop covers: The challenge of transdiagnostic interventions Assessment of self-esteem and the importance of conceptualization and cognitive analysis Individualized goalsetting coherent with core beliefs an specific problems experienced by the patient Intervention recipes and model for enhancing self-esteem. Social skills training – form and implementation in clinical settings Active exercises. Disturbances in self- identity, self- esteem and the relation to others are common amongst people suffering from psychiatric illnesses. This area has been widely addressed in CBT and we have excellent models providing psychotherapy to a vast group of patients. Still many patients are left with a low conviction of own competency and worthiness, leaving them vulnerable to relapse after treatment. Many patients suffer throughout their whole life from penetrating negative cognitive and behavioral patterns, serving as barriers in building strength, following goals and getting the experience of meaning and joy in life. Low self-esteem and lack of social functioning arecorrelated to a variety of psychological disturbances and psychiatric illness. It is not clear whether low self-esteem, lack of social skills and the experience of weakness and incompetence is predisposing or consequences of disorders as depression and anxiety. But clearly these states affect life in a destructive way and result in global negative self-evaluation and avoidance. The consequences of low self-esteem, subjective experienced weakness makes it more difficult to overcome psychological and psychiatric disorders and create negative self-sustaining circles. Patients call for treatment,that helps them regain strength, recover from illness, thrive in life and feel personal worth in order to cope with enduring challenges in life. In this workshop, a number of interventions are reviewed, aiming to build self-esteem, self-confidence social and interpersonal function. The administration of constructive strategies such as coping with anxiety and avoidance, building resilience and developing positive perspectives on life is addressed. The purpose is to help a wide variety of patients with psychiatric disorders in coping with life in spite of their psychological vulnerability.

Learning objectives: enhancing knowledge of the transdiagnostic area of self-esteem, social skills, resilience and building strength. Getting intervention strategies and trying out the principles in short exercises. Teaching methods: powerpoint presentation, rehearsal in pairs and possibly demonstrations.

A brief description of the workshop leader: Irene Oestrich, clinical psychologist, lecturer and supervisor. Has served 44 years in psychiatry and authored a number of books on CBT, self-esteem, coping with adversity in life and participated in the organizational work of EABCT Implications for everyday clinical practice of CBT: the workshop holder is specialized in implementation of cognitive methods in a variety of psychiatric settings and in education of CBT at all professional levels in psychiatry Relevant background readings about the topic : Irene Oestrich, Stephen F Austin, Jørn Lykke and Nicholas Tarrier. The Feasibility of at cognitive behavioural intervention for low self-esteem within a dual diagnosis inpatient population. Behaioural and Cognitive Psychotherapy 2007, 35, 403-408As well as a number of Danish books published at Psychological Publisher and Politiken a.o. Oestrich, IH, Austin S & Tarrier (2007) Conducting researce in everyday psychiatric setteing: identifying the challenges to meaningful evaluation. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing 14, 55-63