BounceBack® is based on research evidence which shows that simple skills and techniques are effective in helping people to overcome low mood and worry. The BounceBack® approach is based on cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT). CBT has also been shown to be just as effective as medication for treating depression and anxiety disorders
As the name suggests, CBT focuses on the way we think (“cognitive”) and act (“behavioural”). The concept behind CBT is that our thoughts about a situation affect how we feel and how we behave in that situation. Skills you learn in CBT are useful, practical and helpful strategies that can be incorporated into everyday life to help you cope better with future stressors and difficulties. One example of CBT in practice would be to imagine you’re walking in a park. While in the park, a friend walks by, but doesn’t acknowledge you. We may think our friend doesn’t like us and we may get angry. BUT we could also assume that our friend is having a tough day and missed us while pre-occupied with a difficult problem they were having. The second thought might not lead you to feel angry, but rather concerned for your friend.
CBT breaks down the situation to help us understand how the way we think (“cognitive”) and the way we respond (“behavioural”) affect each other. By separating the way we feel from the way we act, we gain more control of our mind and therefore choose healthier behaviours. In our park example, we might dismiss our initial anger and make the effort to connect with our friend. You can see this in action in the program trailer video, here
In counselling, the clinician – such as a social worker, psychologist, or a registered counsellor – is responsible for both teaching and supporting you through the process. On the other hand, BounceBack® involves self-led learning with added supportive coaching (if desired, by referral). BounceBack® is structured so that the workbooks are the teacher and the coach is your guide.
Based on research, people who participate in BounceBack® on average feel less worry, have reduced symptoms of depression and anxiety and improved confidence and activity – particularly those who felt mild to moderate amounts of these feelings. We highly recommend giving the program a try without the added pressure of pass/fail thinking. If the program isn’t working for you, that’s okay! It just means a different strategy might work better. Here are some additional resources that you can use to explore other supports available.
We recommend that you spend 20-30 minutes, two or three times a week on the materials. However, we recognize everyone’s life is different and so too are a person’s commitments. What’s important is finding a pace that works best for you; one where you can routinely and consistently progress through the program. Practicing what you learn in BounceBack® is ongoing. Mental health maintenance is a daily process and we hope the program will help you establish this routine within your own life.
Currently, BounceBack® is not offered in-person. If you prefer to work in a group-setting, consider taking Living Life to the Full – an enjoyable and interactive 8-week group course that helps you feel happier, more confident and less troubled during stressful times. Click here to find a course near you or to order the booklets associated with the course.
Many British Columbians do not have family doctors. If that is the case, you can take the referral form to a walk-in clinic or direct them to visit www.bouncebackbc.ca. A nurse practitioner or psychiatrist can also refer you to the program. Please note that you should not be charged by the physician’s office to fill out this form. Ask your physician’s office to contact us or visit the website if there are any concerns.
Many options are available, here are a few we suggest:
- Talk to your doctor or visit a local clinic
- Visit HeretoHelp
- Visit the CrisisCentre
- Call 811 or visit HealthLinkBC to access free, non-emergency health information for anyone in your family, including mental health information. Through 811, you can also speak to a registered nurse about symptoms you’re worried about, or a pharmacist about medication questions.
- Call: 1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433). Available 24/7
- Online Chat with the CrisisCentre Available noon-1am.
- Call Your Local Crisis Line: 310-6789 (do not add 604, 778, or 250 before the number). Available 24/7 instant connection to a BC crisis line, without a wait or busy signal.
Crisis lines aren’t only for people in crisis. You can call for information on local services or if you just need someone to talk to.
It can be challenging navigating how to provide helpful support to someone you care about. A good place to start is to ask them how you can support them on their journey. Some may want to share things with you, such as the booklets they are working on, whereas others may want to do it completely on their own. If you would like to learn more about how to provide helpful support to your loved one, our online program has a workbook called “Information for Family and Friends” which provides helpful tips. You can access it for free by registering for the online program here.