Behavioural Activation

This a course for people experiencing depression.

Group aims and objectives

Understand how depression works and how it is easy to get stuck in depression.  In particular the course explores how what we do, including how we spend our time and how we respond to life’s challenges, can either boost or damage our self-confidence and sense of wellbeing.

  • Identify ways of coping that may help in the short-term but cause more problems in the long run, and learn alternatives
  • Set individual realistic and achievable ‘mini’ goals from week to week – the activation part.
  • Learn to identify and approach difficult situations rather than avoid them
  • Learn skills that help in managing common difficulties in depression e.g. problem solving, sleep, relaxation and basic mindfulness.

Is this course for you?

  • Attendance – We ask for a commitment to come to the group, once a week for 8 weeks. In depression it can sometimes be hard to motivate yourself – this is covered in the group, but the more sessions you can come to the more you’ll get out of the group.
  • The focus will not be on past events or how you got depressed initially. We will look more at how your depression operates in the ‘here and now’ and what may be keeping the depression going
  • The focus is not on group ‘therapy’ but more a series of ‘classes’ that offers an opportunity to try out skills in between sessions, and then share and get feedback the following week about how you’ve been getting on.
  • Behavioural Activation is one of the therapies recommended by NICE for the treatment of depression because there is sound evidence that it has helped many people in their recovery.
  • To get an idea of the types of things we cover in the group, please see the Behavioural Activation booklets on our Resources page.

You will be asked to keep a log or simple record of what you have been doing in between sessions. You may want to be able to make notes during the session also. You will not be asked to show this to the group but occasionally it may help the people running the group to see your notes.


Recommended self-help reading: