• University of Edinburgh
  • Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh logo

Self Care and Wellbeing: A Practical Guide for Health and Social Care

Learn practical self care exercises to manage stress and improve your wellbeing so you can care for others effectively.

384 enrolled on this course

Self Care and Wellbeing: A Practical Guide for Health and Social Care
  • Duration

    3 weeks
  • Weekly study

    2 hours
  • 100% online

    Learn at your own paceHow it works
  • Unlimited

    $23.33/monthLearn more

Learn techniques to combat emotional fatigue

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought major challenges and pressures for health and social care workers, as well as for students in the sector.

Through necessity, frontline workers and students have been required to accept greater levels of responsibility – leading to an increase in stress and physical, mental, and emotional fatigue and exhaustion.

On this three-week course, we will introduce you to a range of self care and mindfulness practices designed to improve your stress management and overall wellbeing.

Acknowledge the impact of cumulative trauma on health and wellbeing

The first step in dealing with the effects of traumatic situations on your mental health is to acknowledge them. The course starts by showing you how to do just that.

You’ll learn to use a range of self-awareness tools, and be guided through exercises that allow you to recognise the challenges you are experiencing so that they feel less overwhelming.

Put mindfulness and self-compassion into practice

Once you acknowledge the effects of stress and trauma, you’ll be ready to learn the self care techniques that can help you to deal with them.

You will explore the current and evolving principles of self-compassion and mindfulness, which you can start to apply practically in your daily life.

By the end of this course, you’ll have the knowledge and skills of self-compassion and kindness to meet your emotional needs, and manage them effectively as they change.

Download video: standard or HD

Skip to 0 minutes and 1 second Are you working in health or social care and looking to improve your wellbeing? Would you like to develop resourcefulness to deal with difficult and traumatic situations? During this three week course, we’ll guide you through practical self care exercises, such as the three-step breathing space, being present, self-kindness and compassionate listening. Through practising and repeating these techniques, you’ll learn how to manage effectively your response to stress at work and at home. Join our course and learn how to care for yourself so that you can better care for others.

What topics will you cover?

  • Mindfulness and Cognitive Sub-systems
  • Caring Human Factors (CHF)
  • Mindful Self-compassion
  • Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness (TSM)
  • Amygdala Hijacking
  • Soles of the Feet
  • 3-step Breathing Space

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and learn at your own pace. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

Learning on this course

You can take this self-guided course and learn at your own pace. On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Reflect on the omnipresence and ubiquity of cumulative trauma and crisis events in healthcare.
  • Apply the current and evolving principles of mindful and compassionate self care in practice.
  • Practise different forms of self care as required to meet sensitively each stage of traumatic experiences.

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for students, social workers, and healthcare professionals wanting to look after their mental health. Anyone interested in improving their overall wellbeing or seeking support with managing extreme stress will also find it invaluable.

Who will you learn with?

MSc in Critical Care Programme Lead for Professional Development, Physician, Intensivist, Past President Scottish Intensive Care Society and a Founding Fellow of the Faculty of Intensive Care Medicine

I am Professor of Student Learning (Nurse Education) in Nursing Studies at the University of Edinburgh.

Dorothy is Honorary Nurse Consultant, Honorary Fellow at the University of Edinburgh, Lead Adviser to Scotland's Ombudsman and Director DA Professional.

Dr Kitty Wheater is Mindfulness Chaplain at the University of Edinburgh, an Associate of the Global Compassion Initiative, and Teaching Partner at the Oxford University Mindfulness Centre.

Who developed the course?

The University of Edinburgh

Founded in 1583, the University of Edinburgh is one of the world’s top universities and is globally recognised for research, innovation and high-quality teaching.

Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh

The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh has been enabling doctors to pursue their careers in specialist internal medicine through medical examinations, education and training, since 1681.


Ways to learn

Upgrade this course


Basic access

Choose the best way to learn for you!



Billed at $279.99 for a year


Unlock your expertiseEndless possibilities!Try before you upgrade
Access to this courseticktickLimited to 5 weeks
Access to ALL eligible short courses with additional benefits, for a yearcrosstickcross
Discuss your learning in commentstickticktick
Certificate when you're eligiblePrinted and digitalDigital onlycross
Join and Upgrade

Ways to learn

Buy Unlimited to access this course and hundreds of other short courses for a year or Upgrade just this course for extra benefits. Or, join with basic access.



Billed at $279.99 for a year

Endless possibilities!

  • Access to this course
  • Access to ALL eligible short courses with additional benefits, for a year
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Upgrade this course


Unlock your expertise

  • All of the above* for this course only, plus a printed certificate when you’re eligible

*Excludes access to all eligible short courses with additional benefits for a year

Basic access


Try before you buy

  • Limited access to course content for 5 weeks

Find out more about certificates, Upgrades or Unlimited.

Find out more about certificates, Upgrades or Unlimited.

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps, but you can complete them as quickly or slowly as you like
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

Want to know more about learning on FutureLearn? Using FutureLearn

Do you know someone who'd love this course? Tell them about it...