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EPISODE # 402

Jessica Schleider — How to Build Meaningful Moments that Can Transform Your Mental Health

Little Treatments, Big Effects: How to Build Meaningful Moments that Can Transform Your Mental Health (book cover)

If you’ve ever wanted mental health support but haven’t been able to get it, you are not alone.

In fact, you’re part of the more than 50% of adults and more than 75% of young people worldwide with unmet psychological needs. Maybe you’ve faced months-long waiting lists, or you’re not sure if your problems are ‘bad enough’ to merit treatment? Maybe you tried therapy but stopped due to costs or time constraints? Perhaps you just don’t know where to start looking? The fact is, there are infinite reasons why mental health treatment is hard to get. There’s an urgent need for new ideas and pathways to help people heal.

Little Treatments, Big Effects integrates cutting-edge psychological science, lived experience narratives and practical self-help activities to introduce a new type of therapeutic experience to audiences worldwide: single-session interventions. Its chapters unpack why systemic change in mental healthcare is necessary; the science behind how single-session interventions make it possible; how others have created ‘meaningful moments’ in their recovery journeys (and how you can, too); and how single-session interventions could transform the mental healthcare system into one that’s accessible to all.

Jessica L. Schleider, Ph.D. is an American psychologist, author, and an associate professor of Medical Social Sciences at Northwestern University. She is the lab director of the Lab for Scalable Mental Health. She completed her PhD in Clinical Psychology at Harvard University and her Doctoral Internship in Clinical and Community Psychology at Yale School of Medicine. She has received numerous scientific awards for her work in this area and her work is frequently featured in major media outlets (Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, Washington Post). In 2020, she was selected as one of Forbes Magazine’s ‘30 Under 30’ in Healthcare. She has developed six evidence-based, single-session mental health programmes, which have served more than 40,000 people to date. She is the author of The Growth Mindset Workbook for Teens and co-editor of the Oxford Guide to Brief and Low Intensity Interventions for Children and Young People. Her new book is Little Treatments, Big Effects: How to Build Meaningful Moments That Can Transform Your Mental Health.

Shermer and Schleider discuss:

  • her own experience with mental illness in an eating disorder
  • 80% of people meet criteria for a mental illness at some point in their life
  • What is the goal of therapy?
  • navigating therapy modalities, access, payments, insurance, etc
  • What prevents people from getting the mental health help they need?
  • a brief history of asylums, institutions, deinstitutionalization and othering of mental healthcare
  • disease model of mental illness
  • What are outcome measures to test different therapies? “Works”?
  • traditional therapy vs. single-session interventions
  • growth mindset: personality, academic performance and personal outcomes can be changed if we treat setbacks as opportunities to grow and improve
  • Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)
  • You don’t have to feel ready for recovery to take steps towards it.
  • mental health issues that can be addressed through single session interventions: eating disorders, anxiety disorders, depression, suicidality, ADHD, substance/alcohol use disorder, OCD, self-injury
  • difference between goals and values (wellness/health, family, compassion/helping, wisdom/education, relationships/kinship, joy/pleasure, spirituality/religion, perseverance, independence, community
  • action brings change.

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This episode was released on February 3, 2024.

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