Stephen’s Story

“I started with Life Links after being referred by the job centre, I was struggling with anxiety and could not go into town or crowded situations; this made me feel frightened and unhappy. I now feel more able to put myself into social situations and interact with others, even strangers; this has had a positive impact on my life as I have reconnected with family members who I have not seen for many years and now feel confident enough to use public transport. One of the first things that I did with my recovery worker was identify my needs and set goals about what I wanted to achieve. During sessions with my Recovery Worker we have worked towards these by focusing on different areas including: positive thinking, building self-confidence, assertiveness, motivation and managing emotions. I have also begun to learn about Graded Exposure and how this can be used to overcome my anxiety around doing certain things, I am currently using this to increase how often I speak over the phone as this is something I struggle with.

I have also been made aware of various government funded schemes and charities which can help to reduce the amount I pay for my utilities; I have been awarded The Warm Homes Discount and The Winter Fuel Payment. I am also waiting to hear a response from Severn Trent Water about whether I will be awarded a reduced monthly payment for my water bill that is funded by The Big Difference Scheme.

When I first started with Life links I had walked out on a job as my anxiety was too great and I could not manage; now that I have worked on improving my wellbeing, I am ready to start considering employment again and I  am exploring different services which can help me in my job search.”

Stephen, Beaumont Leys