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This I Believe, December 2013: Melissa Hensley

“Believing in God and in One’s Self.”

Melissa A. Hensley is an assistant professor in the Social Work department.

headshot of Melissa A. HensleyI lead a monthly “Empowerment Workshop” at a mental health agency in a nearby county.  The people who attend the group choose the topic for discussion each month, focusing on self-care, wellness, and recovery from serious mental illness.

Recently, I was facilitating a discussion on building self-esteem. The group members and I were discussing a worksheet that we’d all completed. The worksheet asked us to list positive qualities we possessed, compliments we’d received recently, and challenges that we had overcome. As we were taking turns sharing our responses, the conversation came around to a middle-aged woman seated at the back of the conference room. She stated that she could not think of anything good about herself. I was surprised at first, but I tried to respond in an encouraging way.

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