Instructions for using the self-care programmes

Photo: Jussi Hellsten

The self-care programmes can be used independently and under the instruction of a professional as part of other care, and starting a programme does not require any diagnoses. The self-care programmes are suitable for people interested in their own wellbeing, as well as people with mental health challenges and their loved ones. They are also suitable to be used as tools by professionals.

The self-care programmes contain:

  • reliable text materials
  • information about mental wellbeing
  • expert videos
  • methods for reinforcing your own mental wellbeing
  • a wide variety of exercises proven to be effective
  • tools for self-reflection.

Before starting a self-care programme, you should give thought to a few things to ensure that you will stay inspired to make progress and practise. Working independently online requires motivation to progress in the programme and do the exercises even if it feels challenging at times.

If you start a programme as part of other care, your care contact will provide you with the necessary instructions for progressing in the programme. They will help you get started and will be in contact with you over the course of the programme.

By contrast, if you start a self-care programme independently, below are some instructions and tips for progressing in the programme:

Think about the following:

  • Why are you starting the self-care programme?
  • What are you hoping to achieve with the programme; what is your objective?
  • What time of day and week do you find works best for doing the exercises of the programme?
  • Where can you find help if needed over the course of the programme? For example, your loved ones or the Crisis Helpline?
  • How will you practise or do assignments? At home or somewhere else? On a computer, a tablet or a smartphone? Writing on paper with a pen or pencil, or in a Word file on your computer, for example?
  • Where will you find motivation to keep making progress in the programme and doing the exercises? What will help you keep going if you hit a rough spot?

Ensure the following:

  • You have a working internet connection and a device for reading the materials of the programme.
  • You have a peaceful space for working.
  • If needed, you have headphones for watching videos and listening to audio recordings.
  • You have supplies for taking notes, as you should write down thoughts that occur to you over the course of the programme. This will reinforce the memory imprints and thus the effects of practising, give structure to your thoughts and help you see your progress.

Remember also to:

  • progress in the programme when you are feeling alert and in a good mood
  • talk with a loved one about your thoughts during the programme if needed
  • be gentle towards yourself
  • get enough sleep
  • eat well
  • do enjoyable things in your everyday life.