The importance of mental health is something we are continuously learning more about. Mental health impacts on so many areas of our lives, from relationships and work to our physical health and sense of worth. Any one of us can experience challenges to our mental and emotional wellbeing at times.
Growing Well, a mental health self-assessment tool, has been available for over ten years as a set of cards and tear-off pads. Shortly, Growing Well will be available as a simple, versatile web-based app which can be used to assess up to 50 aspects of our mental health and wellbeing.
Using the universally-understood technique of scaling, this is an invaluable tool for mental health professionals, social workers, counsellors, psychologists and others who support the health and wellbeing of young people or adults.
But Growing Well is not only a Mental State Examination (MSE) tool for professionals—it is also a self-assessment tool. One of this app’s greatest strengths is that it empowers people to actively engage with their own mental health.
How is your mental health? What are your indicators of wellness? What are the things—both big and small—that let you know how you are doing?
The Growing Well App is built around five key indicators or ‘domains’ of mental health: Being Organised, Being Satisfied, Being Healthy, Being Connected and Being Active. Under each domain are ten statements and a sliding scale of 0—10. Using the scale, a person can measure how they are going with various aspects of their life, including sleep, relationships, food, exercise, getting out and about, managing personal hygiene, risk-taking, leisure, laundry, accommodation and work.
This app also incorporates the renowned ‘Five-Column’ technique from strengths-based practice. Using the following five headings (with a text box beneath each one) you can ask questions and record notes:
Issue – What is happening?
Future picture – Hopes and goals
Strengths, resources & exceptions — to the problem
Constraints – What gets in the way?
Next Steps — Where to from here?
Features of the Growing Well App
- Use on computers, phones and tablets.
- Type name, date and reference number (optional).
- Consider 5 domains of mental health: Being Organised; Satisfied; Healthy; Connected; & Active.
- Explore each domain further using 10 simple statements—that’s 50 aspects of our lives we can assess for mental wellbeing.
- Slide the scaling tool from 1-10 to rate how you are doing.
- Use the ‘Five-Column’ technique to describe: The Issue; Future Picture; Strengths/Resources/Exceptions; Constraints; and Next Steps.
- Record your comments in the text box under each heading.
- Capture snapshots of the conversation by saving as a PDF anytime.
- Share, print or clear the record anytime.
- Attach and send via email.
- Save as a PDF directly into service folders and records.
The Growing Well app will be available this week. To express interest and be notified of the apps release, please fill in the linked registration form.