UNDERSTAND YOURSELF – LOVE YOURSELF was the name of the educational-psychology course first held by Luong Van Can Fund (LVCF) in the 2020 – 2021 school year. It provided scientific knowledge in the fields of psychology and neuroscience.

A scientific perspective on THOUGHTS – EMOTIONS – BEHAVIORS

According to cognitive – behavioral therapy, our brains tend to immediately interpret an event, thereby raising emotions that urge our instant response to the event. This process usually takes place so quickly that our thoughts and feelings can only be realized after our responsive actions. Therefore, people tend to act against their desires, causing emotional challenges and psychological barriers that prevent them from fulfilling desires. Additionally, psychologists believe that when any factor is affected and changed, it might influence other factors.

This was also the main content of the first session “I behave the way I believe” by psychologist Huynh Hieu Thuan on March 14th. On this basis, the following lessons introduced tools and ways to change to one of the three factors: THOUGHTS – EMOTIONS – BEHAVIORS.

The second lesson (on March 21th) was entitled I am aware of what is taking place by MSc Doctor Nguyen Trung Nghia, who had equipped the participants with the neuroscience-based knowledge of mindfulness and its benefits. Thereby, practising this exercise contributed to our increased ability to recognize thoughts and feelings that governed our actions.

The way we interpreted everything and blamed resulted from our inner core beliefs based on and derived from our past experiences. For instance, some irrational core beliefs such as “I’m useless” or “I don’t deserve to be loved” made us more inclined to blame and criticize ourselves.  The third lesson entitled Me – past, present, future and held on March 28 under the guidance of MA. Vo Nhat Huy and Ms. Le Thi Toan, offers insights on how to realize these beliefs and attempt to change this through self-compassion.

The final lesson (on April 4th) lasted an entire day; MA. Nguyen Thi Ngoc Giau summarized and reconnected our adopted knowledge as well as methods for working with your own emotions, especially negative ones via the topic “I live with my emotions”. In addition to changing thoughts and behavior, regulating emotions required releasing negative emotions, nurturing positive ones, and, most importantly, accepting and regulating the “negative” emotions. Exercises such as Soothing touch and Self-compassion mantra were enthusiastically practiced by students.

Instead of waiting until you are sick, exercise before getting sick

“After four-weekend lessons, I have realized some positive changes. Specifically, I can understand and accept my own negative emotions. I will try to take one further step by turning those negative emotions into positive energy so that every new day is a happy one.” – shared Huynh Uyen Nhi.

“This course is a completely whole new experience for me. I believe that understanding and loving myself, knowing who I am, and acquiring emotional management skills are tremendously important.  What I have learned after this lesson is the answer to the three conclusive questions at the end of the course: the most important person is the one accompanying us. Please kindly love him/her. Additionally, I recognized a lot of connections with those around me. I would like to thank the speakers for their wholeheartedness in delivering intriguing and memorable lessons that might make our life better”– said Luong Thi My Huyen. 

“I am utterly excited to join this course, through which I have learned a lot of useful lessons and exercises to better control my feelings. I believe that after the course, emotional control will be gradually resolved despite the fact that it is truly challenging. Ms. Giau shared that it is advisable to exercise before you get sick, rather than waiting until illness. What I need to do is to practise the exercises every day to form a habit. I am grateful to LVC Fund and the speakers for organizing such a meaningful course.” shared Vu Mong Hoang Yen.

Those were also the sincere sharings of the students that attended the course. LVC Fund believed that the lessons had equipped students with accurate understanding of mindfulness and self-compassion, … so that they can keep practising this for further self-improvements.

It was hoped that by the end of the course, each participant would be able to practice the exercises  on a daily basis, to be more open to their own emotions so that they can understand and practice how to deal with psychological barriers, to become more confident, to know how to love themselves, and to be more optimistic.

Some moments of the course

Articles and photos: Media team – Luong Van Can Student Club.