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'It's About Us'
In order to manage challenging behaviour, we must be aware of the causes of that behaviour, and how our own actions and attitudes can affect the people we support.
Our own attitudes to managing 'challenging' behaviour
Low Arousal approaches to managing behaviour seek the least intrusive, most non-aversive approach possible to improving clients' quality of life.
This requires firstly examining behaviours of concern to establish their causes. In many cases, challenging behaviour is the result of high levels of stress, physical discomfort, or a general lack of well-being - either physical or mental. By identifying and minimising the causes of challenging behaviour, rather than focusing on the behaviour itself, one can actually reduce the instances of behaviours of concern whilst simultaneously improving service users' quality of life.
In addition, the Low Arousal approach encourages individuals and employers to also look at staff stress levels in terms of debriefing, and focus on trying to facilitate better relationships between staff and service users. By being aware of your own contribution to behaviours of concern through your interactions with clients, you can prevent crisis situations from escalating.
In essence, the Low Arousal approach is not just a behaviour management strategy, but a holistic philosophy towards caring for vulnerable people which acknowledges that challenging behaviour is not a choice.
'People who can behave, do' - Bo Hejlskov Elvén
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