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Techniques from mental health courses you can use today

by Craig Boyle

Mental health problems affect almost half of Australia’s population. The chances are that you know someone suffering from a mental health condition. Here at Open Colleges, we offer Mental Health courses that help people take a step towards a career in mental health. Some of the lessons learned on these courses can help others in day-to-day life, so we thought we’d share…

We want to do our part to help those who suffer from mental health problems. Our courses, which allow you to study mental health online ahead of embarking on a career in the field, teach core concepts, skills and techniques to help sufferers.

If you’re planning to study Mental Health online, you may enjoy learning some key techniques for helping people cope with mental health issues. With these strategies, you can get a glimpse of what studying and working in mental health is like, as well as picking up some useful skills along the way…

Mental Health Online courses


One of the core skills you’ll learn as part of a mental health course is to improve your communication. When dealing with mental health, the importance of great communication becomes paramount. Learning to communicate feelings and emotions means analysing how you approach your own communication. It also means learning how you can encourage others to express their feelings.

To begin working on this before you begin studying, start by learning to communicate with empathy. Ask questions and let people answer them fully. Encourage people to analyse their feelings. You can practice this at any point – If you’re feeling angry, ask yourself why.  Conversely, when you’re in a good mood, discuss why. This sort of introspective self-analysis will improve your ability to communicate and will stand you in good stead if you choose to start studying mental health courses.


Although not a part of our mental health qualifications, mindfulness is an effective practice to learn for your own well being and for future clients. It’s a practice founded around the concept of focusing on the present moment. It helps to reduce anxiety and stress by focusing on the conscious and deliberate actions we are taking in any present moment. Clinical trials have also proven that mindfulness helps reduce the symptoms of depression.

You can practice mindfulness anytime. Meditation is a popular way to practice, but mindfulness is not limited to meditation. You can be mindful about any activity your doing by gently reminding yourself to be present in the moment. If you’d like to actively practice, here are some quick tips to get you started:

  • Sit somewhere comfortable and set a time limit. 5 minutes is a good start.
  • Begin noticing your body. Direct attention to your feet on the floor, then notice how your body feels. Consider your hands, where they are, how they feel. Breath deeply and evenly, and notice how your breathing affects your body.
  • Whenever your attention wanders, don’t fight. Just notice that it has happened and slowly direct attention back to your body.
  • Go easy on yourself. Don’t beat yourself up if you struggle. Just practice slowly and consistently.

The more you practice mindfulness, the easier it becomes. Whether you choose to study mental health online or not, it’s a great technique to learn.

Self-directed recovery plans

One of the core teachings in a mental health course is learning how to create recovery plans with your patients. If you’re interested in practising this early, you can look at your own mental health and work on your own plan. A simple plan would incorporate physical activity, some mindfulness practice and the avoidance of certain triggers. It will be highly dependent on your own circumstances. Ultimately just being able to recognise the things that alter your mood and plan a strategy around them will help.

Study a mental health course online and you’ll learn comprehensive techniques and strategies to help those suffering from mental health problems. Your qualification can lead you into a career as a mental health worker, where you’ll help sufferers understand and deal with their conditions.

Interested in mental health? Enrol into our CHC43315 Certificate IV in Mental Health course online to learn key techniques, strategies and skills that will help mental health patients across Australia.

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