ISPS Australia – Compassion in Psychosis Conference, 24th March 2018 Lived Experience, Conference Highlights

Amanda: this was my first ISPS AU conference, and to be there from the beginning of the dream, be involved in the planning and delivery, and be there in person was such a rewarding and worthwhile journey. Being able to witness all our work as a board come to fruition was rewarding. A highlight was that through promotion of the conference, more people got to learn about us and we have been able to welcome new members.

I really loved the idea of creating a conference space open for all to come together; different clinicians as well as both individuals and family members with a lived experience, and everyone feeling they had an equal place. Through my own circles I had promoted ISPS AU and the conference, inviting and encouraging lived experience colleagues to attend and present, so it was lovely to see so many familiar faces present. I particularly enjoyed hearing from such a diverse group of people about the power of compassion and how useful it has been both personally and professionally in their lives.

Another highlight for me was co presenting a workshop on Compassionate Listening through Peer Supported Open Dialogue. I left feeling I had been professionally nourished with an increased sense of hope for the future.

I found value in the Compassion Focussed Therapy workshop as I was instantly able to apply the theory of the circles, due to their power and simplicity, into my own practice facilitating Hearing Voices Groups. Also, as a result of both the training and the conference, I noticed my own compassionate circle has strengthened and grown. Applying the compassion focused therapy approach enabled me to say ‘yes’ when asked to use my own lived experience live on radio; what also helped during the interview was the presenter/journalist, Lyn Malcom’s real, authentic, respectful approach, which felt like ‘compassionate journalism’ at its best.

Amanda Waegeli
Lived Experience Board Member Perspective

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