For some, mental health problems cause distress for a relatively short period of time - perhaps as a result of a particular event in their life. For others, they can pose longer-term challenges. However, no matter the severity or duration of your mental health problem, recovery is possible.
One aspect of recovery is learning to manage and control your mental health problem. Many find self-help tools and techniques can help manage symptoms - however, like any solution to a problem, these strategies take time and effort.
Everyone's journey to recovery is different, and what works for one person might not work for you. Please note that these self-help tools and information guides are not a substitute for talking to a professional about your mental health. If you need help, you can make a referral to Liber8 today and book an assessment with one of our counsellors.
Resources by topic
Anxiety is a normal human feeling that is necessary to keep us safe – feelings of anxiety prevent us from taking risks or acting on impulse. We all experience it when faced with situations we find threatening or difficult. When we feel anxious, we experience worrying thoughts and physical sensations as the body releases adrenaline – a chemical messenger which makes our body ready to run away or fight.
However, if anxious feelings become too strong or go on for too long, they can stop us from doing the things we want to and can make our lives miserable.
A self-help guide for anxiety that uses cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). CBT involves looking at your problems, examining your thought and behaviour patterns, and working out ways of changing these negative behaviours and thoughts.
A self-help workbook to help you cope with feelings of anxiety. There are various tasks throughout this booklet to help you identify your anxiety, and to help you learn new ways of dealing with it.
This booklet is aimed at anyone who experiences anxiety. It looks into the causes of anxiety, its effects and what to do to reduce it to a manageable level.
Anger is a natural feeling, just like joy, love or fear. It is neither good nor bad. Anger can be caused by a range of different things, and it can be helpful in some cases if it’s expressed constructively. However, if you aren’t able to manage anger properly, it can become destructive.
You may feel that you can do little to control your anger – but there are things that you can do to make a difference.
This booklet will help you to understand what the common signs and causes of anger are and provide strategies to help you to control your anger.
This workbook will not stop you feeling angry, but it will help you to start to explore your anger, identify triggers and look for healthier ways to express yourself and take care of your emotional self.
This leaflet explains anger, giving practical suggestions for what you can do and where you can go for support. It also includes advice for friends and family.
There is no one way to cope with the feelings any of us has after the death of someone close to us. We all feel differently, and we all cope in different ways. You might feel quite isolated. You could possibly think nobody else has felt the same way as you do. The important thing is for you to accept that whatever you feel is not unusual.
This guide aims to help you to understand and cope with the experience of grief using cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) techniques.
This resource provides information on bereavement, where to go for support, and suggestions for helping yourself and others through grief.
Many people feel low or down in the dumps at times. Depression is a very common problem, however a major depression is one that lasts for at least two weeks and interferes with the person’s emotions, behaviour and everyday life.
Depression is often caused by life stresses or setbacks in life such as bereavement, relationship problems, financial difficulties, problems at work/school or medical illness. We all react to loss with a sense of disappointment, which can vary from mild to severe. For some people, the problem becomes much worse and normal everyday life itself becomes difficult.
Many adults will, at some point, experience symptoms of depression. If you think you may be depressed, your GP is the best person to talk to in the first instance. They will have information about local services which may be able to help.
Below are some helpful resources for anyone who is troubled by feelings of depression.
This leaflet is for anyone who has been feeling down, distressed, overwhelmed or hopeless, who feels like they are struggling and who thinks they may have depression.
It describes what depression feels like (both in your mind and in your body), ways you can help yourself, some of the help that is available, and how to help someone else who may be depressed.
This booklet covers a wide range of topics related to low mood and depression. There are various tasks throughout this booklet to help you understand your depression, and to help you learn new ways of managing it.
This leaflet is for any man who is depressed, their friends, and their family. Men seem to suffer from depression just as often as women, but they are less likely to ask for help. This leaflet gives some basic facts about depression, how it affects men in particular and how to get help.
In this booklet we look at some of the reasons why people become depressed, contributors to keeping that going, and some ways of thinking and treatments that can help.
Everyone knows what panic is, and it is common to feel panicky from time to time. For example, if you discover you have had your wallet stolen or you are sitting an exam and realise you don’t know the answers to any of the questions.
A panic attack is a bit like ‘normal’ panic, but different in certain ways. The feelings are a lot stronger and seem to come ‘out of the blue’ - they are not usually related to the sort of frightening situation described above.
This guide explains the relationship between anxiety and panic attacks, including possible causes and how you can access treatment and support. It also includes tips for helping yourself, and guidance for friends and family.
This guide aims to help you understand panic and panic attacks, including their symptoms and their purpose. By understanding these, you’ll be able to better cope with panic attacks and make them less severe.
Living with a phobia can be challenging. If you have a phobia you might avoid or restrict activities because of an overwhelming fear or anxiety. You might have an unreasonably strong fear of specific places or events such as leaving home, busy crowds or public transport.
A reaction to a phobia can be very similar to a panic attack as the person reacts to these situations with extreme fear.
A guide to help you understand more about phobias – what causes them and what keeps them going – and provides guidance on how to manage and overcome them.
This guide includes information on phobias such as symptoms, causes and how to access treatment and support. Get tips for helping yourself, plus guidance for friends and family.
After giving birth, most mothers experience some degree of mood swings, but postnatal depression can affect up to 1 in 6 new mothers. Although the exact cause of postnatal depression is not yet known, research suggests that there are a number of factors that contribute to it.
This leaflet details the broad range of symptoms of postnatal depression and outlines ways you can help manage them, as well as provides guidance for family and friends.
This booklet from NHS Health Scotland reflects many discussions, suggestions and comments made by health professionals, professional bodies and voluntary organisations, people with postnatal depression and their friends and family.
This publication from SAMH explains postnatal depression and other perinatal mental health issues, including possible causes, sources of treatment and support, and advice for friends and family.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a mental health problem you may develop after experiencing traumatic events. The condition was first recognised in war veterans, however a wide range of traumatic experiences can be causes of PTSD. They can be events you experience yourself, or events you witness.
This document explains what post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is, including possible causes and how you can access treatment and support. It also includes tips for helping yourself, and guidance for friends and family.
This self-help guide is intended for people with mild-to-moderate symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or complex post-traumatic stress disorder (CPTSD). This guide will help you understand more about both conditions and provides ways to help you manage and recover.
Relaxation does not ‘cure’ or solve mental health problems, but learning how to relax can help you to feel more comfortable. Many people say that they ‘can’t relax’. The reason for this is that we need to learn how to relax - it isn’t just something that happens.
When we are stressed, our muscles tense up. This tension causes uncomfortable bodily feelings such as headaches and backache. The aches and pains of tension can cause worry, making us even more anxious and tense. When we are tense/anxious our body system speeds up – relaxation slows us down again.
This document has tips and exercises to help you relax. Exploring relaxation can help you look after yourself when you're feeling stressed or worried by giving you a mental break from these feelings and helping you refocus.
Sleep is a natural process that is not directly under our control, and there is no correct amount of sleep that everyone must have.
However, when you experience sleep problems there are a number of areas which may affect you – including not getting enough sleep, having poor quality sleep, or having difficulty falling asleep.
Most people need eight to nine hours of sleep each night for good health and clear thoughts. Deep sleep and relaxation provide a chance for the body to rest and repair. Research suggests that deep sleep allows for more antibody production and stimulates the immune system.
This booklet aims to help you understand your sleep problem better and to learn some simple ways to cope. Sleep problems are very common and are often referred to as insomnia. One study in America found that only 5% of adults reported never having trouble sleeping.
Ten top handy tips for a good night’s sleep, including having a regular sleep pattern, avoiding caffeine, and more.
Stress is the word that many people use when they are describing how the demands of their life seem to be becoming too great for them to cope with. This ability to cope varies from person to person and what one person finds stressful may not be a problem for another.
If someone has too much stress for too long, this can lead to anxiety and other mental health problems.
Stress is a commonly experienced problem. There is no need to feel embarrassed or concerned about stress and you are not weak because you struggle with it. However, if stress is becoming an overwhelming force in your life and is affecting your ability to function properly, then this self-help booklet could be helpful to you.
Being under pressure is a normal part of life. It can help you take action, feel more energised and get results. But if you often become overwhelmed by stress, these feelings could start to be a problem for you. This resource explains what stress is, what might cause it and how it can affect you. Includes information about ways you can help yourself and how to get support.
Most of us know what it’s like to feel stressed, but it’s not easy to pin down exactly what stress means. This resource explains what stress is, what might cause it and how it can affect you. It includes information about ways you can help yourself and how to get support.