Identifying Your Needs

Free worksheet and simple explanations for a tool used by professionals to help you identify your needs

How Do I Find Out What My Needs Are?

The method we recommend (and that should be used by all healthcare professionals) is one that weaves together the threads of our biology, psychology and social experiences to illustrate the many factors that combine to shape our health and wellbeing. It's like looking at the whole picture instead of just one piece.

It is called the 'BioPsychoSocial Model'.

 

Considering the influences of our body, mind and environment helps us understand our problems better. Although they are all interconnected and overlap having this big picture can really help to get to the root of what's causing our difficulties or health issues so that we can make sure we're getting the right help and know where changes need to be made.

 

Rather than applying the same pathways, assumptions and treatments to everyone this approach means that support can be tailored to suit individual needs.

 

It also reduces stigma and shame around being unwell. It's not because someone isn't 'strong' or 'resilient' enough. It's because many things can affect how we think, feel and behave, some are outside of our control.

 

By understanding what factors are most contributing to our health we can try to manage this and get the right support. Instead of only trying to avoid health downturns and crisis situations this means enjoying a better quality of life overall, as long-term wellbeing can be made more stable and predictable. 

Our Free Worksheet

Professional information about the 'BioPsychoSocial Model' can be confusing and complex so we made our own worksheet to make it easy for non-professionals to understand and use. And it comes with lots of examples to help you too.

 

It provides a clear outline of your needs, strengths and goals that you can use to collaborate with professionals and share with others who support you.

Our worksheet guides you through these steps below to identify your 

difficulties, strengths and needs:

Step 1 - Your Body and Biology

 

First of all starting with any physical health or disabilities you may have. This includes thinking about your family history and your childhood. Moving on to cover any significant changes that have happened in your life before documenting your current symptoms and how they impact on your wellbeing. Noting your strengths and skills also helps you to uncover where you have any unmet needs that health and social care professionals could help you with.

 

 

Step 2 - Your Social Environment 

Social factors have a significant impact on your wellbeing. This step looks at your current situation and then works backwards to your childhood. It also considers your culture or religion. Thinking about areas where you lack power and control to be able to make changes is very important in this section, including social inequalities and discrimination. By seeing all of these events and circumstances mapped out you can identify if anything has recently changed in your environment or relationships and what supports you may need to improve your situation and wellbeing.

 

Step 3 - Your Mental Health

The final step is about your mental health. Now that you have covered biological and social factors a much bigger picture than things just being 'all in your head' will have emerged. You can use the examples we've provided to identify patterns in your life or if something has changed that is causing you distress right now. By doing this you will be able to think about which of the common therapies might help or if there are other things that could improve your wellbeing and achieve your goals in a way that fits your needs better.

 

Our free worksheet comes with lots of helpful examples!

Do you need help navigating the mental health system?

 

We believe that everyone should have access to the help they need when they need it, and be able to make informed decisions about their own healthcare. 

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