Counselling Corner newsletter – February 2023

The Western & Chinese New Year celebrations are behind us and the Myanmar New Year is coming up in April, so it’s a good time to reflect. What have we achieved in the last year? Not just materialistic but especially in terms of personal goals, new insights, new skills learned etc.  In other words, have I become a better person? If you are in charge of moving a company forward, you can ask the same question. Has your company become a better company in the last year and done good things for your staff, your community and your environment and your clients and suppliers.

Counselling Corner did that as well of course; not just a SWOT analysis but also celebrated some other achievements:

  • We reached almost 6000 people in 2022 with some form of training or workshop
  • We gave about 2000 individual counselling sessions (either fully paid, subsidised or free)
  • About 100 people passed the advanced counselling skills training during the last year and started working in the counselling field (either paid or volunteer)
  • Millions of people nationwide were reached some sort of awareness raising including the campaigns on Radio, TV and social media

As suicide cases are unfortunately rising in Myanmar we also looked how many clients we successful helped to get rid of their suicidal thoughts during one month. We counted 12 people in a month who had contacted Counselling Corner with a dark cloud above their head and left seeing the sunshine again. The Myanmar singer Floke Rose who wrote a song about his counselling experience:

Reflection also includes looking forward and setting goals you want to achieve in the coming year. For Counselling Corner this is to continue to improve the mental health situation for everybody in Myanmar and hope to be able to help some organisations with training, marketing support and supervision to set-up mental health centres in the country side.

Reflection Workshop for Staff

Do you want some support for your staff to reflect on their past and future and get them motivated and excited to look at the future?  Counselling Corner recently created a new reflection workshop ideal for this purpose.

Background of the workshop
At the start of 2023, Counselling Corner created the new idea of a workshop for reflection of the past year for all people, especially employees. During the workshop a professional counsellor will ask  “end-of-the-year-reflection questions” which helps you to be ready for the next year. The end of the year is a time of excitement and reflection. The session helps reflecting on the past 12 months and reflecting on what went well and what didn’t. And it motivates people to eagerly begin a new chapter and make a fresh start.

Workshop synopsis
Everybody in Myanmar faced many challenges during the past year including good and bad things, ups and downs. But we mostly assume our past year with only just one word like good, bad, tiring and cheerful. People and teams need to reflect as part of learning and innovation. Reflection can reveal strengths and areas for improvement. During the transition from one year to the next, we tend to focus on what’s coming up in the new year. Planning ahead and creating goals is important, but let’s not forget to reflect on the previous year to learn from our experiences and get focused and deliberate about the future choices we make. After the reflection, there are benefits like promoting motivation, building mindfulness, improving self-confidence, and growing the process of self-development. These end of year reflections will help you to be ready and plan for the next year.

Aims and Objectives
To reflect your emotions, thoughts, behaviours and actions
To know about yourself more both physically and mentally
To build resilience throughout the year
To learn how to plan for new year

Promoting motivation
Building mindfulness
Building our self-confidence
Growing the process of self-development
A year-end review makes planning easier for next year

Book now a reflection workshop for your company before the Thingyan holidays start. A workshop is best held in person in groups of maximum 20 people and takes about 2-3 hours. The costs is 250 USD (which is just over 12 USD per person).

Children and Mental Health

The whole month of February our counsellors are talking about children and mental health. Learn more about it in our social media including the Tuesday Live talks, the regular Friday Facebook posts the free workshops on Wednesday and our YouTube Channel.

All parents want the best for their children but sometimes they realise at a late stage some bad habits and negative environment in the household can cause emotional damage to a child. It is necessary to be healthy mentally and physically from a young age because childhood experiences will shape his life.

A child with a healthy mind will understand feelings like: sadness, anger, happiness and fear. What’s going on around the child matters and it’s important to use positive words. Behaviour can be controlled to a certain level. A child will understand and obey if you teach the child about good and bad habits. The child learns to sympathize and creates good relationships with the environment, family & friends and become confident.

Symptoms found in children aged under 5 who have mental health disorders are difficult to see. It might be refusing to eat, cry for a long time without any obvious reason. It might be easily getting scared, looking worried, avoid eye contact, not playing as it used to do etc.

Children at school age will see some changes in life and their behaviour changes including different sleeping and eating patterns. Yelling and getting angry all the time as a parent is not going to help but will likely turn into tension. A child is likely to try to escape and run away from the tension. The focus of the child can become less, concentration becomes weaker if tension at home increases. Taking care of a loving, caring and stimulation environment is important.

Some of these behaviours are normal in children to a certain extent, so parents don’t have to assume mental health issues immediately. If the symptoms are getting more severe, continue for a long time or are not matching the age of your child then you have to be carefully look at the situation.

The mental health of children under 10 depends primarily on the guardian. They don’t understand the environment/feelings/behaviours yet so they learn from their guardian. Mental health condition changes and improves in a safe environment where all needs for a child are met. Try talking to a child and if the child wants to talk, listen to the child and try to understand how the child feels and work together with your child on feeling safe and have a stimulating environment without force.

Consult with pediatricians and relevant specialists if necessary.

Individual Counselling and Consultation

Counselling is a kind of therapy by talking. Counsellors are trained to be good listeners and reflect what their hear and help you to understand your own thoughts and ideas. Counsellors are NOT psychiatrist and therefore will never prescribe any medicines. The issues you’re worrying about can be solved just be talking and clearing things up in your head. 
Usually we start the therapy with a 50 minutes intake session followed by generally 8 – 10 individual weekly sessions. This can be done face to face or online.

A consultation session
In case you are not sure if you would actually need counselling, or in case you want a professional’s advice on how best taking care of a friend or relative who is experiencing issues you can also ask for a 50 minutes consultation session.

Sliding scale
We understand not everybody can afford our regular tariffs and therefore we are using a sliding scale system. Simply discuss with our reception or with your counsellor and explain how much you can afford to pay. If you are paying the regular tariffs, please be assured that your full fee rates are used to subsidise the mental well-being for others.

Activities at Counselling Corner

Counselling Corner’s aim is improving the mental health situation in the whole country. We believe that mental health care should be available for everybody and with the income from our paid services we subsidise other free of charge activities.

Here are some of the recurring free or subsidised activities:
Tuesday’s          LIVE talk on Facebook at 7 pm
Wednesday’s     Online Workshop about previous day topic: 6 – 8 pm
Saturday’s         Online Emotional workshop: 6 – 8 pm
Weekend’s        In person clay, art or emotional workshops (different times, subsidised price of 10.000 Kyats)
Once a month   Free individual consultation day
Training             Basic Counselling Training

Basic Counselling Skills Training (6 Mar 2023)

Hailed by many previous students as “the best training they ever did” and the start of a career as a professional counsellor. During this 10-days online training you learn the basic of counselling, how to set boundaries, how to listen with empathy and much more.
The training is very practical to learn and practise new skills and includes homework. A certificate is given by successful completion.
Private classes for groups of up to 20 participants or private, in person classes are possible nationwide. Get in touch or sign up now through our website: Basic Counselling Skills Training

Read the Myanmar version of newsletter on our website

Please do share / like and contact us if you have any questions or suggestions on the above or want to know more about our services. We want to make it easier for people to talk about mental well-being and we need help from all organizations in Myanmar to discuss mental well-being openly with your team and work on improving it.

For inquiries please contact us:
Phone: 09 785 074 173, 09 784 509 916

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