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Welcome to the Health Defence Blog - a blog about health, wellness and a healthier you. Brought to you by the Health Defence team at Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland, you'll find up-to-date information on a range of topics from what's in your food to the latest advice on e-cigarettes!

Tony Young

Guest blogger: Tony Young - CHSS Voices Scotland Trainer

April 17, 2016

'Self Management’ is the latest buzzword in Health & Social Care, but you might be asking yourself, what’s it all about? And how can it help me?

What we are talking about is supported self management, that is, helping people to look after themselves better and find more support from their communities, as their dependence on professional services becomes less. This approach can be seen as a road to self-management.

It’s about supporting people to live the best life they can. The person is at the centre, designing and deciding - with professional guidance - what care provisions they would like to receive.

Road to SM

And one day, you or I, or a friend or family member will be receiving the benefits of this approach.  But the paradigm shift that has to happen for it to really embed itself in our culture is huge! We have to really understand that our health and wellbeing is both a personal and collective responsibility and that services are there to help us achieve that!

Through self-management, people affected by chest, heart and stroke conditions can learn to better manage their health and live more fulfilling and healthier lives. But we have also found the principles are helpful in so many different situations. Some people have used time-management and goal setting skills learnt from the CHSS self management courses, to help them with short and long-term goals in their life.

  • Brian, who recently had a stroke, went from not being able to get out of the house, to doing a 20 minute walk every day around the block.
  • Others have realised that reducing their waistline or smoking, will significantly help in achieving the health and lifestyle goals they have set themselves, as well as lowering the risk of future problems.
  • For other people it is more about achieving a sense of feeling more in control of their life – even if their symptoms are not greatly improved.

Why not think about setting yourself some goals? Whether its to eat a bit better or to exercise more, breaking them down into manageable chunks is the first step.

Tony Young works as a Voices Trainer for CHSS and travels the country sharing the COSMIC training package to support service users and professionals to embed self-management principles into practice.

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***Disclaimer: always seek medical advice before starting a new diet, exercise regime or medication. The information in these articles is not a substitute for professional advice from a GP, registered dietitian or other health practitioner.

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