- Clarify how able I feel to do this. This might be different from what I think is
the best option
- Talk with me about how I could do this and what support I might need
- If I don’t think I can do this, we may need to revisit earlier options
Discuss if I feel able to do this
- Talk with me about the decision and how much say I have
- Ensure I understand the options that are available to me
- Talk with me about the pros and cons of the options available
- Discuss my views, values and preferences
- Explain your views
- Discuss if I feel able to do this
- Discuss what are we going to do and how we are going to do it
I've been really focussing on checking in with young people whether they feel able/will do the option we seem to be deciding on. I was surprised how many said no... It made me realise how easy it is for young people to go along with what they think we want to hear and how important it is to ask this explicitly, so we can go back a few steps and find something they do want/feel able to do.
Even though something can seem the best thing to do, it can still impossible. It's helpful to talk about whether I feel able to do it. Sometimes, this can make it feel doable. Other times, it still feels too much and I need to think what else I want to do instead.
Ask the young person if they can actually do what they have decided on. Ask what would help them do it.
Approach this in a friendly way. Sometimes young people feel forced to agree with things whilst in an appointment that they feel they can’t do or don’t want to do back in the ‘real world’. Make sure they know it’s ok to say ‘no, I don’t think I can do this’ rather than feeling they have to go along with it. If you figure out why they don’t feel they can do it, you could maybe make some adaptations. For example, I was supposed to be adding an item to all of the snacks in a meal plan. I knew I wasn’t ready to do it, but I was too scared to say no to my psychiatrist. In the end we compromised, starting off by increasing 1 snack and going from there. This felt much more manageable. If we had agreed to increase all 3, I wouldn’t have increased any of them. This way, I increased 1 at a time rather than saying I’d do everything but actually doing nothing.
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