Author: Rhi Willmot

Take Back Control – How to Support Autonomy

What is it?  A recent review on the impact of quarantine on our mental health indicates social isolation may prompt emotional difficulties such as depression, stress and anger1. However, the authors also suggest a number of factors can mitigate against these outcomes. In particular, supporting individuals’ sense of autonomy – or helping them to feel in…

By Rhi Willmot 26 May 2020 0

Incentives

What is it?  Reward and punishment have long been used to direct behaviour. However, introducing extrinsic motivational consequences such as these can fundamentally change how we view a situation, in turn altering our motivation and subsequent action. As such, they must be carefully applied in order to be effective, and to avoid pitfalls which drive unintended behaviour.    For example, the introduction of a monetary fine for parents who are late to collect their children…

By Rhi Willmot 11 May 2020 0

Finding Forty Two

What is it? Life in lockdown means many of the constants which normally structure our existence have been removed. Most of the country will not be travelling to work, or enjoying typical leisure and sporting activities. Those who are furloughed face even greater disruption to routine, and the inability to pursue tasks which usually give life…

By Rhi Willmot 23 April 2020 0

Futurelessness

What is it? To encourage universal adherence to government guidelines, we must communicate effectively with those who are disproportionately affected by Covid-19, or who do not respond as intended to traditional messaging. For example, those living in poverty are more likely to work in low-paid casual jobs which have been heavily impacted by Covid-19, and…

By Rhi Willmot 14 April 2020 0

Fulfilling Our Psychological Needs

What is it? Motivation directs and energises everything we do. It helps choose what we commit to, and how well we maintain this1. Utilising our understanding in this domain can ensure society is motivated to adhere to government advice and stays mentally and physically well during Covid-19.  Motivation stems from the desire to satisfy some form…

By Rhi Willmot 8 April 2020 0

Framing Messages to Promote Compliance

What is it? Information can be conveyed in multiple ways. In particular, the language and framing of content can be the difference between a message which successfully changes the way a person thinks, acts and feels, or one that falls flat. Messages which restrict a person’s sense of control can even drive them in the opposite…

By Rhi Willmot 6 April 2020 1

Giving Health Purpose

Historically, the discipline of psychology has been devoted to the practice of healing. Aligned with a disease model of human functioning in which ‘mental health’ is described purely as the absence of illness, traditional psychological study has prioritised the alleviation of mental disorder. However, this approach fails to consider the importance and value of pre-emptively…

By Rhi Willmot 2 May 2017 0

When Happy Met Healthy

Adjacent possibility theory describes how small alterations can achieve great impact. It is argued that by mapping the current dispositional state of a population, and identifying patterns of behaviour that are adjacent but more desirable to the current, individuals can be directed to a more achievable alternative. This gradual approach to change is thought to be…

By Rhi Willmot 16 June 2016 0