Counselling Corner newsletter – May 2023

social media and mental health

Are you obsessed with social media? 

Almost everyone will say they are not addicted to social media, but maybe we don’t notice how many hours we spend watching pictures, videos and news. Think about it and keep in mind, when we are using social networks and focus on our phone, we somehow are not taking care of our mental health.

People may be dissatisfied, discouraged, angry, anxious, stressed, physically and emotionally drained at the moment. Posting something on social media will give people the attention they are craving in the form of “likes” and makes them forget for a moment about their reality. The more impressed by admiration from your online friends, the more you could move away from the reality around you and damage relationship with your surrounding family, friends, colleagues. It could lead to a deterioration of your life, feeling connected with friends and lead to loneliness.

Even if the reality of life is bitter, difficult and harsh; you don’t have to face it alone. It’s important to continuously built a network of friends, colleagues, neighbours, family etc to help you deal with these difficulties. Make sure you have a good network and help others.

During the month of May, the topic of social media and mental health is discussed in our workshops and webinars. 

In case you have missed it look at our YouTube channel:

Roles of social media in Mental Well-being (Counsellor Marlo) – YouTube
Signs social media is impacting mental well-being (Counsellor Eingyin Zaw) – YouTube

Behind the scenes, clay workshops

Since last year, Counselling Corner introduced clay workshops as a first step for Myanmar people to start expressing feelings. We have seen with the recent cyclone, how powerful Mother Earth can be and we therefore use natural Myanmar clay from the ground to mould anything you like out of the clay. 

The counsellor, and some quiet background music encourage participants to think about their own feelings and convert these into a clay figure. After about 20-30 minutes of concentrating on your own thoughts, it’s time to show the clay figure to the other group participants and start to share your emotions in a non-judgmental environment.

The effects of this simple workshops are amazing, as for many people it’s the first time to actually think and express their emotions which can be anything like feeling loved, anger, sadness, grief, anxiety etc. With the help of the counsellor, the peers in the group will then support and share ways to overcome strong emotions. It’s an excellent method that is very affordable and bonding.

Counselling Corner activities

We often get the question why we do so many different activities on mental health. The simple reason; it’s our aim to improve the mental health situation in the whole of Myanmar and to do so we need to work on all fronts. A summary of what we do:

-Individual counselling (face to face or through Zoom)

-Training (capacity building to get more professional Myanmar counsellors)

-Prevention (through workshops and webinars give people tools to help themselves)

-Community work and advocacy (reduce the stigma, get people to improve their own mental well-being)

-EAP programs (Employee Assistance Programs) to help your staff to stay mentally strong

-Research (to get better numbers and more publications on mental health in Myanmar)

-Consultancy (on any topic on mental health including consultation for family members)

-Supervision (how continuously support new counsellors)

Our extensive program for individual customers is published monthly on our Facebook banner at the top of the page:

Corporate clients are greatly appreciated as the services they buy from Counselling Corner not only help their own staff. It helps us to run all the other programs and services for the general Myanmar public for free or at subsidised tariffs.

2845 respondents to a survey on depression in Myanmar

We recently asked you to help finding respondents for a survey on depression in Myanmar by the Dutch university of applied science and we received a lot of responses. In total 2845 Myanmar people from all over the country and abroad responded and filled in the survey using a translated version of the PHQ-9 method.

The university is now working on the analysis of data and will write a report on it. Let us know if you are interested to receive the final report which is expected to come out in 2 months.

Thank you very much to all those who helped filling in the survey.

Basic Counselling Skills Training

Since the start of Counselling Corner 5 years ago, we have trained over 1000 people through this very interactive training to understand more about their own mental well-being, counselling in general and how to support others. It’s a start to a career in counselling.

During the training the following topics are discussed:

Day        Topic

Day 1     What is Counselling?

Day 2     Role of a Counsellor

Day 3     Natural Helping Style

Day 4     Essential Counselling Skills

Day 5     Communication

Day 6     Values

Day 7     Counselling Skills in Depth

Day 8     Session from the start till the end

Day 9     Principles for Counselling

Day 10  Recap and practise

Skills learned during the training;

  • Basics of Counselling
  • Essential Counselling Skills
  • Counselling Skills in depth
  • Communication Skills
  • Values and Beliefs
  • Essential qualities for a counsellor include Congruence, Empathy, Attentiveness, Non-judgement and Unconditional Positive Regards, Proficiency.
  • Basic Ethics as a Counsellor

This is what previous participants say about the training:

“I have done many training on MHPSS before and the Counselling Corner training is FAR better than anything else I have done”

“I loved the interactive part of the training to learning learn new skills”

“It helped me greatly to understand myself”

“Since the training I am much more aware of the importance of creating a mentally safe environment for my children”

Interested? Read more here: About Basic Counselling Skills Training – Counselling Corner Myanmar

and sign up for the next batch that starts on Monday 5 June (weekdays from 6 – 8 pm, online and in Myanmar language)

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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