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LET’S TALK Lift Your Low Self Esteem Week 1 – Introduction to Low Self Esteem LET’S TALK Written by Rebecca Emmerson, Dec 2010 adapted from Melanie Fennell’s.

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Presentation on theme: "LET’S TALK Lift Your Low Self Esteem Week 1 – Introduction to Low Self Esteem LET’S TALK Written by Rebecca Emmerson, Dec 2010 adapted from Melanie Fennell’s."— Presentation transcript:

1 LET’S TALK Lift Your Low Self Esteem Week 1 – Introduction to Low Self Esteem LET’S TALK Written by Rebecca Emmerson, Dec 2010 adapted from Melanie Fennell’s book “Overcoming Low Self Esteem” with kind permission from the author

2 WELCOME House keeping: fire exits, toilets, refreshments Introductions, who we are IAPT Questionnaires Rosenberg Questionnaire Keeping safe Congratulations on making the first steps towards making change!

3 Ice Breaker Introduce yourself to the person next to you

4 Group Structure Weekly from pm (with some groups in the day time) but not in any ‘school’ holidays Based on the Work by Dr Melanie Fennell Benefits of CBT effective for self esteem Psycho-educational group not a therapy group Not here to give you high self esteem, here to provide you with coping strategies to allow you to improve your own self esteem. Weekly tasks Week one effect!

5 Aims of the Course To provide an understanding of self esteem; To gain knowledge of how low self esteem develops and is maintained; To strengthen positive beliefs about yourself; To encourage self acceptance; To learn to recognise helpful and unhelpful thoughts; To identify our Bottom Line and Rules for Living; To provide encouragement and support in learning different ways of thinking and acting, that will help to improve self esteem; To facilitate a supportive environment in which students may share experiences and learn from the group. Learn various Relaxation exercises

6 Group Rules What rules would you like the group to agree to over the next 8 weeks?

7 Ice Breaker What is your favourite food?

8 Aims of Today’s Session What is Self Esteem? How does Low Self Esteem develop? How is Low Self Esteem maintained? How does Low Self Esteem effect us? Introducing the CBT model The continuum of Self Esteem Positive Notebook Exercise Diaphragmatic Breathing

9 Group Exercise 1.What do we mean by Self Esteem? 2.What is Low Self Esteem? 3.Can we think of people in the media who have Low Self Esteem?

10 A definition of Self Esteem “The overall opinion we have of ourselves, how we judge or evaluate ourselves, and the value we attach to ourselves as people.” Melanie Fennell (1999), ‘Overcoming low Self Esteem’

11 A definition of Low Self Esteem “(if you) feel your true self to be weak, inadequate, inferior or lacking in some way, if you are troubled by uncertainty and self– doubt, if your thoughts about yourself are often unkind and critical, or if you have any difficulty in feeling that you have any true worth or entitlement to the good things in life, these are signs your self esteem is low” Fennell, 1997

12 How Low Self Esteem develops Negative Early Experiences The Bottom Line (beliefs) Rules for Living (assumptions) Trigger Situations Situations in which the Rules for Living are (or may be) broken

13 How Low Self Esteem Develops - 1 Negative Early Experiences Events, relationships: Rejection, neglect, abuse, criticism and punishment Lack of praise, interest, warmth or acceptance Being the ‘odd’ one out in your family or school The Bottom Line Negative conclusions about yourself, based on these experiences: ‘I am bad’, ‘I am worthless’, ‘I am stupid’, ‘I am not good enough’

14 How Low Self Esteem Develops - 2 Rules for Living Ways you think you should behave, because you believe the Bottom Line ‘I must always put others first’, ‘If I say what I think, I will be rejected’, ‘Unless I do everything to the highest possible standard, I will achieve nothing’ Trigger Situations Situations in which the Rules for Living are (or may be) broken Being rejected, the possibility of failing, feeling that you might lose control

15 Group Exercise Brainstorm early and later experiences that could contribute to low self esteem

16 Experiences Contributing to Low Self Esteem Early ExperiencesLater Experiences Punishment, neglect or abuse Failing to meet parental standards Failing to meet peer group standards Being on the receiving end of other people’s stress or distress Belonging to a family or social group which is a focus for prejudice An absence of good things (praise, affection, warmth, interest) Being the “odd one out” at home Being the “odd one out” at school Work Place intimidation or bullying Abusive relationships Breakdown of relationships Persistent stress or hardship Exposure to traumatic events

17 How Low Self Esteem is Maintained Activation of the Bottom Line ‘I’m stupid’ Negative predictions ‘People think I’m stupid’ Anxiety Confirmation of the Bottom Line Prediction left unchallenged, bottom line remains intact Unhelpful behaviour ‘I’ll avoid the situation’ Self-critical thinking Depression Trigger situations Situation which Rules for Living might be broken ‘I must not say anything as no one will want to hear it’

18 Break

19 ‘The Jelly Baby Exercise’ Split into groups and discuss how low self esteem effects: Thoughts Feelings Behaviours Physical (split into 4 groups and take one each to discuss Write on post it notes and place on the jelly baby!)

20 Thoughts and Feelings Thoughts Self criticism Self blame Self doubt Negative thoughts Discounting praise and compliments Focuses on weaknesses and flaws Lack of self acceptance Feelings Sadness Anxiety Depression Guilt Worthless Shame Frustration Anger Disabling self consciousness Over sensitivity

21 Behaviour and Physical Symptoms Behaviour Not asserting needs Reduced ability to speak out Apologetic stance Avoiding challenges and opportunities Bowed posture - bowed head Avoidance of eye contact Hushed voice - Hesitancy - Shyness Excessive drinking/smoking Excessive eagerness to please Being life and soul of the party Excessive/lack of attention to appearance Avoidance Checking behaviours Physical Fatigue/Tiredness Tension Low Energy Uncomfortable body sensations Unable to concentrate Changes in appetite and weight Changes in sleep pattern

22 Vicious Cycle of Thoughts, Feelings and Behaviours Situation: You have received an invite to go to a party Feeling Nervous, worried Behaviour Decides not to go – avoids the situation Thought ‘I won’t be able to cope everyone will think I’m an idiot’

23 Group Exercise 1.What would someone be like if they had high self esteem? 2.Can we think of people in the media who have high self esteem?

24 Group Exercise How would the following be different if we had High Self Esteem? Thoughts Feelings Behaviours Physical

25 Positive Cycle of Thoughts, Feelings and Behaviours Situation: You have received an invite to go to a party Feeling Excited, happy, Behaviour Goes to the party Thought ‘’I’m looking forward to meeting new people” “going to have a good time”

26 Self Esteem Continuum LSE HSE Able to move back and forth along the continuum Self esteem varies according to the situations we are in and the people we are with Self esteem varies throughout the life span “At home and socially I have low self esteem” “In my job as Sales Manager I have High Self Esteem”

27 Continuum Course Objectives LSE HSE Not here to give you “high self esteem” Not here to rid you of “low self esteem” Here to provide you with skills and techniques to lift your low self esteem! Where ever you are now the aim is to move a few steps forward The course will allow you to move forward along the continuum and be less vulnerable to falling backwards!

28 Positive Notebook Exercise Think of our minds as two cabinets. One holds negative information, the other positive information. The negative drawer is probably jammed full! Keep a ‘special’ notebook. Start keeping a log of all the good/positive things that happen in your day. The positive points you record have to be everyday things, things that happen to you or things you do that are positive. Then write down in a second column what each task says about you. You will end up with a store of pleasurable and confidence building memories

29 Positive Notebook Tips Buy yourself a nice notebook! Avoid using scraps of paper as these are easily lost. Start keeping a record of all the positive things that happen to you in a day. Decide on how many positive qualities you would like to record a day. Start small and build up. Record everyday things that are positive. In the second column write down ‘what does this say about me?’ Future sessions will refer to this exercise!!! Positive actionWhat does this say about me? Went for a swimKeeping healthy Cooked a Thai meal Helping son with homework Adventurous cook Being a good parent Buy flowersCreating welcoming home Rang a friendSociable friendly person

30 Relaxation Deep Diaphragmatic Breathing Diaphragmatic breathing, together with mental and physical relaxation, has been found to reduce high blood pressure and anxiety significantly. Diaphragmatic breathing counteracts all the unfortunate effects of poor breathing and is one of the most useful tools in stress management. Diaphragmatic breathing is completely ‘portable’. You can use it wherever and whenever you feel stressed and no one will know you are trying to relax as all you are doing is breathing correctly.

31 Closing Exercise Share with your partner your best achievement to date!

32 Week 1 - Weekly Tasks Start Positive Notebook Exercise Observation of people with High & Low Self Esteem, note what you think! Diaphragmatic Breathing Exercise Read Chapters 1, 2 and 3 of ‘Overcoming Low Self Esteem’ by Melanie Fennell for further supportive reading

33 LET’S TALK Lift Your Low Self Esteem Week 2 – Anxious Predictions LET’S TALK

34 Feedback of Weekly Task Positive Notebooks Observations Feedback on Week One Effect

35 Aims of Session To explain what anxious predications are To explain how anxious predictions work To explain link between anxiety and avoidance Group to learn how to identify anxious predictions and the precautions they take Group to learn how to check out anxious predictions

36 Predictions are ok We all make predictions about things in our environment. “If I turn the light switch off I know the room will go dark!” We learn through this experience and adapt accordingly.

37 Group Brainstorm What do we mean by Anxious Predictions?

38 Predictions in Low Self Esteem When we have low self esteem we make predictions about ourselves and view them as facts. We are referring to the fear we experience when our bottom line is activated and our rules for living are about to be broken.

39 We start generating predictions about what is going to go wrong. This triggers anxiety We take precautions to prevent the worst from happening. Leads to confirmation of our bottom line!

40 The Vicious Cycle Situation: You have to speak out in front of people in class Activation of the Bottom Line ‘I’m stupid’ Negative predictions ‘People will think I’m stupid’ Anxiety Confirmation of the Bottom Line Prediction left unchallenged, bottom line remains intact Unhelpful behaviour ‘I’ll avoid the situation’ Self-critical thinking Depression Trigger situations Situation which Rules for Living might be broken ‘I must not say anything as no one will want to hear it’

41 How Anxious Predictions Work 1.Overestimating the chance that something bad will happen 2.Overestimating how bad it will be if something bad does happen 3.Underestimating one’s own ability to deal with the worst, if it does happen 4.Underestimating outside resources

42 Anxious Predictions Make you at risk to the things you are scared of. So you take precautions to protect yourself. Taking precautions means you never find out what would have happened and reinforces your belief that you can’t cope.

43 What keeps anxiety going? The “Fear of Fear” cycle: More worry More symptoms Fear of fear Symptoms of anxiety (or worrying about symptoms) (e.g. shaking, sweating etc.)

44 The Role of Avoidance Vicious cycle: More fear More avoidance Fear Avoidance Temporary relief of symptoms Longer term: loss of confidence

45 Anxiety is Normal Natural response to danger or stress Helps us survive by preparing our bodies to deal with threat Anxiety acts as the trigger for our bodies to release adrenaline Adrenaline makes the body work faster and harder so it can cope with danger by either fighting or running away – ‘fight or flight’ response

46 The Anxiety Curve Anxiety levels Time Anxiety reduces naturally over time. If you avoid things you never get to check this out

47 Exercise – Split into Groups In groups discuss the following questions 1.Identify situations that trigger anxiety. 2.What do you notice happens to you when you become anxious, what feelings do you experience? 3.What goes through your mind when you begin to feel anxious? 4.What precautions do you take to avoid challenging situations?

48 Feedback to the Group your facilitator will write down your points for each question under each column Q1. Trigger Q2. Feelings Q3. Thoughts Q4. Precautions

49 Can you identify your bottom line or rules for living? “I’m stupid” “I’m worthless” “I unlovable” Doesn’t matter at this point if you can’t If you can, write them down for future sessions

50 Break

51 PREDICTIONS AND PRECAUTIONS RECORD SHEET Date/TimeSituation What were you doing when you began to feel anxious? Emotions and body sensations (e.g. anxious, panicky, tense, heart racing) Rate 0 – 100 for intensity Anxious predictions What exactly was going through your mind when you began to feel anxious? (e.g. thoughts in words, images) Rate 0 – 100% for degree of belief Precautions What did you do to stop your predictions coming true? (e.g. avoid the situation, safety-seeking behaviours) Feelings (short term) (Long term) 27/11 Thinking about meal planned for this evening with old school friends Anxious 80% Worried 75% Heart racing 80% Nervous 65% I haven’t seen friends for ages, wont know what to say, they will think I am boring, they will all be better than me and doing more interesting things. Made and excuse not to go Relief (ST) Let self down (LT) I am boring I don’t go out Lonely (LT)

52 Checking out anxious predictions CHECKING OUT ANXIOUS PREDICTIONS RECORD SHEET Date/TimeSituationEmotions and Body Sensations Rate intensity 0-100% Anxious Predictions Rate belief 0-100% Alternative Perspectives (Use the key questions on next sheet to find other views of the situation). Rate belief 0-100% Experiment 1) What did you do instead of taking your usual precautions? 2) What were the results? 27/11 Thinking about meal planned for this evening with old school friends Anxious 80% Worried 75% Heart racing 80% Nervous 65% I haven’t seen friends for ages, wont know what to say, they will think I am boring, they will all be better than me and doing more interesting things. 96% It is my anxiety that makes me think this way. 60% Whenever I have seen them in the past it has been fine and we have all got on well. 65% They are nice people and have known me most of my life. 60% I went to meal. Really enjoyed catching up with friends, felt like no time had passed, like I had only seen them yesterday. They too were a little anxious about meeting up again.

53 Remember: key questions to help you find alternatives to anxious predictions What is the evidence to support what I am predicting? What is the evidence against what I am predicting? What alternative views are there? What evidence is there to support them? What is the worst that can happen? What is the best that can happen? Realistically, what is most likely to happen? If the worst happens, what could be done about it?

54 Week 2 - Weekly Tasks Predictions and Precautions Record Sheet Checking out Anxious Predictions Sheet Positive Notebook Read Chapter 4 of ‘Overcoming Low Self Esteem’ by Melanie Fennell for further supportive reading on Anxious Predictions


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