Frances was experiencing ruminating thoughts and low mood. She wasn't getting enjoyment from activities that she'd previously liked. Her children were grown up and she was alone during the day when her partner was at work. Her extended family live abroad. Her lonliness was causing Frances to experience great sadness.
"I just feel sad all the time and keep having negative thoughts, especially when I'm alone in the house."
Frances wanted to improve her mood and cope better with the ruminating thoughts. She wanted to find social activities to reduce her lonliness.
In her first Wellbeing Coaching session, Frances was quite tearful and expressed a sense of hopelessness. She couldn't imagine feeling better.
Frances and her Wellbeing Coach used a life wheel to explore areas of her life that she was dissatisfied with. They looked at options for improving these aspects and at the barriers that stood in Frances' way.
Frances asked if ruminating thoughts were common. Her Coach talked through what is happening in the mind when we get anxious and sad, and how coping strategies, such as mindfulness and breathing techniques can help manage this.
Over the course of four sessions, Frances' mood improved. She understood her thoughts and feelings better and was relieved to know that many people experience anxious and ruminating thoughts.
Frances wanted to improve her English and get out into her local community more but didn't want to join a formal class. Her Coach helped to find an English and cooking group at her local community centre. Cooking was one of the activities that Frances' had previously enjoyed and joining the group helped to revive her enjoyment.
By the end of her time with the Coach, Frances' had learned to recognise when she was ruminating and had developed ways to stop the thoughts or replace them with positive ones.
"Now when I have these thoughts, I try and stop thinking about them and do something else, such as singing aloud. It really helps."