I am happy to announce a new approach to helping people with chronic illness achieve greater self-awareness and growth, with the aim of experiencing health within illness. It is called Living Well with Illness.
Using principles based on the work of Havi Carel, a professor of philosophy at University of Bristol, UK, Living Well with Illness workshops take participants through a three-step process to help give them a greater understanding of the role illness plays in important aspects of their lives. The three steps are:
- Telling their story to a supportive individual
- Reflecting on their lived experience and how their life deviates from societal expectations about people who have chronic illnesses
- Using artistic expression to begin to imagine changes that could foster resiliency
Workshop facilitators are:
- Janet Greenhut, MD, MPH, CSC, preventive medicine physician
- Ryan Hart, MA, philosophically trained cancer survivor
- Idelle Hammond-Sass, artist and Open Studio Process facilitator
Workshops are being scheduled in Ann Arbor, Michigan and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Check the website for more information: narrativedimensions.org
As a clinician who has worked with the chronically ill for over 30 years … I would strongly urge people who are living with a chronic illness to consider participating in a Living Well with Illness workshop. These sessions are unique in that they offer a fresh, new look at the issues involved with chronic illness. Specifically, they are grounded in the belief (with solid theoretical backing) that it is possible to lead a happy and satisfying life, in spite of the ups and downs of the disease.
~Susan F. McDonald, ACSW