Olukemi Amala


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The Amala Centre We currently offer a service to adults 18 and over.

At the Amala Centre we are aware that people live within systems of social inequality with regards to, for example; gender, sexuality, race, physical & mental health, size or appearance.

Certain voices, stories, institutions and realities are validated, encouraged, promoted and valued within society while others are marginalised, ridiculed, silenced, explained away or ignored.

These beliefs from society can affect our intimate and close, as well as our wider social relationships.

The resulting inner conflict by a constant bombardment of these distorted messages can damage our self-confidence and self-esteem which can affect our beliefs, expectations, decisions and choices.

At the Amala Centre we support critical self-awareness. Critical self-awareness considers three levels of personal insight working in parallel:

Firstly, we explore how these distorted messages in society arise, are maintain and become common truths. At the Amala Centre we learn to slip around these common truths by developing an enquiring and critical mind. We re-learn, re-interpret and re-tell our stories and as a consequence we begin to re-orient our beliefs. We ask the question: Who benefits by seeing the truth this way?

Secondly, psychological theories and therapies are considered and where useful are used in developing an increased depth of self-knowledge. By addressing unhelpful repetitive patterns and habits we can slowly bring to consciousness the associated thoughts and feelings behind them.

The third level of critical self-awareness is the cultivation and refinement of mindfulness. Just like physical exercise strengthens and gives suppleness to the physical body, developing mindfulness improves understanding, stability, flexibility and stamina of mental processes. Working on the mind at this level supports psychological attention, balance and resilience.

We know from our clinical outcomes and client feedback that psychiatric labels such as clinical depression, social anxiety disorder, or obsessive compulsive disorder, for example, can be overcome by applying attention to these three areas, and therefore psychological ‘illnesses’ do not need to become lifelong chronic conditions.

We believe offering a service across various social issues can support the development of awareness to our differences, similarities, our common struggles and ultimately our shared humanity.

It should not be forgotten that much of Western psychological theory and practice throughout history has reinforced, condoned, medicalised and ‘treated’ oppressed communities by assumed beliefs about mental health, nature, experience and behaviour.

The Amala Centre’s services are facilitated by practitioners who understand through lived experience combined with critical learning the significance of oppression in society on mental health.

At the Amala Centre we promote critical psychological awareness.

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