When I got my first job as a social worker, I was stumped when it came to writing down my expected salary. Was I to put something I wanted, or something I needed? After all, I had heard about all about austerity in the UK. Was I about to deepen that austerity by asking for a higher pay.
Then I realised, if I don’t value myself, no one will value me.
If you don’t value yourself, no one will value you.
We know that as social workers, we are often not doing the job because of the money. But that doesn’t mean that we have to sacrifice on our own personal development.
In this article, I hope to share with you a few great social work webinars that have helped me to learn more.
What’s better, these are entirely free!
With the lockdown enforced by the global coronavirus pandemic, I hope you will also use this time to be refined as a social worker, raring to help others when you eventually go back to work.
I mentioned previously on this blog that I had once gone for Carolyn’s training on suicide, shame and the dissociative identity disorder. I love Carolyn because she speaks from lived experience. But at the same time, she has combined the latest research into her training days.
On her website, she has put up taster videos of her training days. They only involve one session of about 15 to 20 minutes. However, they still give you plenty to think about.
They include the buzz group sessions, which are periods of 7 minutes during the live training day when you can discuss with your partner. These give you a chance to think more deeply into what she has said.
Her topics are deeply relevant to social workers, especially those working within the field of trauma, children, and mental health.
Professor Steve Peters is another trainer I deeply admire. As a consultant psychiatrist for the National Health System (NHS) of the UK, his experience has ranged from psychotic murderers to elite athletes in cycling and football.
His Chimp Model about the mind is something that will bear relevance for many social workers working with addicts, children, and adults. In his foundation videos, he explains why it is so hard to drive change within clients. He explains how the chimp (the impulsive part of the mind) holds them back. More importantly, he shares how we can retrain the chimp to start taking good references from the more rational part of our mind, one he calls the computer.
For other social workers who are looking to grow, he also introduces the concept of personal development time. This is a short 5 to 10-minute window we spent each day to start our day right. Some examples he suggests for this personal development time are:
- Naming things you can be grateful for
- Thinking through the times you will trip up in your upcoming day
- Describing your chimp (what are its likes and dislikes, what triggers bad reactions?)
For other social workers who might be looking to overcome difficulties such as their diet regime, he also introduces the Triangle of Change.
This is a model that asks you:
- What’s the reward of you changing?
- What is the suffering of you staying the same?
- What is the commitment you need to make to change (exercise for 20 minutes everyday?)
- What is your psychological mindedness? How do you interpret the situation? Do you see yourself as powerless, or empowered?
Lastly, there are thoughts from other mentors as well, such as Dr. Sarah Caddy, a General Practitioner. She shares how we can keep sane as we are isolated from humans. For medical social workers who might be overwhelmed by the sheer immensity of the pandemic, she also gives tips on how we can manage the stress and anxiety of working in a time like this. In short, these free resources are not one you should miss! Sign up for a free account on The Troop. This offer ends at the end of May 2020!
Here is a free ebook that sums up all that I learnt!