Crisis intervention is a psychotherapeutic method characterized by prompt attention and few sessions, focusing attention on acute symptoms, arising from the patient’s difficulty in using adaptive defense mechanisms and thus coping with a situation that is it experiences as a threat to the balance of the self. The objective is to reestablish the existing balance prior to the crisis, that is to say that the symptoms at least decrease. Timely intervention in times of acute crisis can prevent chronicity, according to Bellak and Small1. These authors suggest that the most important goal is to avoid regressive functioning (a return to more infantile forms of adaptation), so that the most autonomous and intact ego functions should be reinforced.
According to these authors, the most critical situations in life can be grouped under 3 categories:
Situations that involve violence and cause fear for one’s life, health and sense of self, loss of self-esteem, loss of love or of loved ones: a serious accident, an assault, rape, serious illness or life-threatening incident , the effect of drugs, among others. All of these events can give rise to fear of losing one’s sense of identity, fear that can often be accompanied by feelings of depersonalization and fear of disorganization of the self.
The crises that cause the loss of self-esteem, the experience of rejection and separation are: the loss of employment, divorce, unhappy love relationship, a financial setback, old age, among others.
Medical and surgical problems, which lead to fear of death, disability and disfigurement. Hospitalization, therefore, could also involve a crisis of self-esteem: “suddenly you are a unit that is going to be moved, turned, injected, exposed and sometimes treated callously as to provoke intense anxiety, great anger or depression” 1.
With regard to hospitalized patients, the critical experience may involve diverse circumstances of different complexity: There are those who may suffer from diseases that involve prolonged hospitalizations, with a moderate risk to their lives; those who suffer from diseases that pose a great threat to life; those who have suffered serious traumatic accidents, those who are amputated or transplanted. Crises are expressed according to the emotional impact that an experience implies and can be conditioned in a proportionally different way, for each person. Taking into account, on the one hand, the impact of the stressor event and, on the other hand, the internal tension that may or may not be managed by the usual defense mechanisms that a person has used during his life. To understand the emotional reaction triggered, it is necessary to contextualize it according to the biography of each person. This contextualization gives the patient the search for a meaning to what is happening, which is frequently related to a meaning linked to the life story. This interpretation, which can be conscious or unconscious, will mark the personal seal with which the procedures, illness, accident or intervention will be emotionally significant. From this meaning, for example, an attitude of hope, hopelessness, fear, courage, an excess of vulnerability can be born that often mobilizes anxiety, on other occasions guilt, rage or other reactions.
Crisis situations can trigger from a moderate emotional impact to being configured on some occasions, such as traumatic events when they exceed the individual’s abilities to emotionally contain the experience. They involve an increase in the experience of vulnerability and can mobilize dependency needs greater than those existing before the crisis. We are considering people who are going through abnormal situations associated with the breakdown of the continuity of daily life and the feeling of security that it implies. Psychotherapeutic interventions in crisis situations can enhance the mobilization of new ways of coping that involve a growth of the person and the development of a balance, sometimes even better than the previous one.
Normal medical procedures impose a passive position on the patient, in that he must accept to undergo experiences such as being injected, manipulated, washed or even more invasive. The experience of autonomy and the own body can be compromised, if it is combined with previous experiences that can take diverse emotional meanings. So how much vulnerability and dependency will be mobilized? It depends on the one hand, on internal factors, that is to say, related to personality and biography, and on the other, on external factors associated with the nature of the cause of hospitalization and its severity.
Arlington Associates (established 1984) is a network of expert consultants who have worked together for many years, providing people training and consultancy. Many of us are authors in our field (for example, try The Secret Laws of Management http://www.stuartwyatt.com/index.html by Stuart Wyatt. I loved it and recommend it � Barry Faith � owner � Arlington Associates). We have all worked in the UK and worldwide and work singly or in teams.
Apart from providing our services worldwide (typically Europe, Middle East, Asia, Africa and the Americas, we also provide training for overseas groups in the United Kingdom, arranging accommodation, transfers, training facilities and business tours, as needed.
Our training is:-
Flexible and tailored to your needs
One-to-one or group
Provided by top quality trainers
Enjoyable – learning should be fun!
Our workplace mediation aims to facilitate local solutions to local problems. Our independent meeting facilitation takes place at the highest levels.
How do we provide consultancy?
Consultancy takes many shapes; it can involve:
Reviewing for the senior management the current policies and recommending alternatives.
Sessions with staff to examine the issues that arise out of organisational change and policies.
Helping small groups to explore their own personal and career development within the organisation.
Working with small groups and individuals to improve their personal and interpersonal skills
Organisational research including employee attitudes and brand attitudes.
Assessing how marketing resources are currently employed and suggesting potentially more effective strategies.
Our Associates have worked for a variety of organisations including: Accenture, AMP Financial Services, Bank of Scotland, Barclays Bank, British Airways, British American Tobacco, Camelot, Compaq (HP), City University Business School, Civil Service College, Cornhill Insurance, Bechtel (UK and USA), BBC, British Nuclear Fuels Limited., DHL, Donkey Sanctuary, Henley Management School , Feedback Market Research, Marks & Spencer, Linklater and Paines, Lloyds Bank, Market Research Society, Mitel Ltd, Motorola, National Assembly of Wales, Novartis, Nuclear Technologies, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Royal Bank of Scotland, SCA Packaging, Scott Paper, Smith & Williamson, Sony, Texaco, The BSS Group, Visa, Xerox, Zurich and many small organisations.
The need to upgrade performance and skills has never been greater, not only for organisations but for staff. Appraisal is the process which enables organisations to take stock of their skills mix and standards, and for employees to look to where and how they should develop. Appraisal works best where there is objectivity, enhanced by trust. Appraisal training enhances the participants’ ability to appraise staff fairly and objectively; and allows participants to develop an effective system for their organisation, or to use their existing system effectively.
- To understand the strengths and limitations of appraisal
- To know how to appraise fairly and objectively
- To understand the different purposes of appraisal
- To understand the purposes of appraisal in their organisations
- To have received personal feedback on their strengths and weaknesses as appraisers
- To have related appraisal to staff development and pay
- To have practised setting achievable objectives for staff development
- To have practised handling difficult interviews
The sessions are very dynamic and participants are involved either in consideration of practical policy issues or practising appraisal from the beginning of the course. Depending on numbers and available time, participants will practise up to three or more appraisals, based in realistic case studies. We use CCTV and playback. Participants keep their (shared) video to view after the course. We suggest participants come prepared to describe appraisal situations they have encountered, which can, if appropriate, be discussed and practised.