I confess. I have a Pinterest account. And I have spent most of my time on the site mindlessly surfing through the recipes, fashion and travel. What my dad used to call “bubblegum for the mind”.
For those of you who may not know, Pinterest.com is a virtual pinboard where you can organize and share things you find on the web that are of interest to you. Once you create an account you can start ‘pinning’. Basically, when you ‘pin’ something to the virtual pinboard the pin is a link to the website or page where you saw what interested you. The idea behind the site is that you will connect with others with similar interests. FYI – you don’t have to create an account to browse through the site.
And it took me about 10 months of using Pinterest to clue into the idea that people just might be ‘pinning’ Online Counselling material.
I used a variety of search terms: online counselling, mental health & technology, online therapy. And – presto – I found pins.
Here’s some of what I found – mental health clinics, individual online mental health practitioners, training courses in online counselling and coaching, books, articles, blogs, networking opportunities and therapeutic tools, to name a few. As I browsed through I realized much of this information I would not have found any other way.
For example – SuperBetter by Jane McGonigal. I found a pin for a TedTalk by and that led me to the site https://www.superbetter.com/
SuperBetter is an online social game designed to build personal resilience in the face of a serious challenge. I’m going to take a closer look.
This article about a study in New Zealand piqued my interest. http://www.interaksyon.com/infotech/computer-therapy-helps-young-out-of-depression-study
This short interview with Julie Hanks, a U.S. therapist – especially her thoughts on what might be ahead for our profession in the next 10 years – was thought provoking.
I found a blog written by a school counsellor whose aim is to offer suggestions for how others in the profession can utilize technology. Which led me to other resources as well. Where was this blog when I needed it earlier this year? http://thecounselinggeek.blogspot.ca
And I found tools, tips, counselling games and therapy worksheets. This is where Pinterest really shines as a resource. I am going to explore this more in-depth.
All of this also led me to wonder about professional boundaries and the use of social media. I bet there’s a pin for that too.
Let me look.
Yup – there is – an Ethical Framework for the use of Social Media by Mental Health Professionals from the Online Therapy Institute
That will be next on my reading list and I’ll share what I learn with the rest of you.
Well, I’m off to create a new board and start pinning!
Dawn Schell, MA, CCC, CCDP is an affiliate of Worldwide Therapy Online Inc. http://www.therapyonline.ca
*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA