Student Insights: Five minutes with Rosie Garrisson

By Sophie Archibald | 5 June 2018

Blog Banner - Rosie Garrisson

 

In our 10653NAT Diploma of Positive Psychology and Wellbeing we always talk about starting with self and creating a ripple effect out there in the world - whatever that may mean for you. 

In this interview, one of our Diploma graduates explains how the course has had an enormously positive impact on her life.

 

Rosie Garrisson

Positive and Wellbeing Motivator

Melbourne - April 2014 - Alumni

 

What drew you to complete the Diploma of Positive Psychology and Wellbeing?

When I began the course in April 2014, my career had encompassed a business secretarial path in both the legal and personnel industries despite really wanting to pursue teaching.

I had begun several courses over the years yet often lacked the desire and confidence to finish.  I also suffered from anxiety and always felt there was something missing from my life. I was mindful that I hadn’t reached my full potential for various reasons.

Then I bumped into my daughter’s past pre-school teacher, Gill Richardson, who was so full of enthusiasm about the Diploma that I decided to investigate.  Within a few days I was enrolled and I was very nervous and excited at the same time!

I completed all the preliminary inventories and ‘Strengths Profile’ which I found most interesting, especially when an accredited Langley Group consultant phoned me for my debrief. I conveyed my fears of whether I could do the course and she soon calmed my nerves. She guided me through my strengths and showed me how they could assist me. I felt better prepared!

I was particularly interested in finding some more positive tools to assist me with my anxiety and challenges in my life.  Above all I wanted to gain an achievable formal qualification in something that I enjoyed!  Somehow amidst all the trepidation I felt I was on the right path!

 

How was your experience of the Diploma of Positive Psychology and Wellbeing? 

The first day in the classroom after some 35 years, with a whole room of employed people, was nerve-racking to say the least, yet I wasn’t a ‘fish out of water’ for long and soon realised that I had found at last what I had been looking for my entire life. It was the perfect timing for me to lap up every moment!

Surprisingly the course was incredibly practical and that’s what one remembers – so impactful!

I found the content so interesting, especially the ‘flow theory’ which I had practised for years without formally realising its benefits.  The daily mindfulness practices were invaluable and I still use them regularly.  Carol Dweck’s work on ‘mindset’ really resonated with me. The facilitators were genuinely interested in you.  I actually enjoyed researching and writing the essays and exploring the topics.Rosie and Martin Seligman-3

I realised I had found GOLD – I had always been interested in psychology, having experienced an early childhood trauma followed by years of counselling. I knew I had found a new meaning in my life which made me feel uplifted and excited – a feeling I hadn’t felt for a very long time.  I could see myself creating a new career path and my mind was beginning to flow with ideas. 

I also met some great people on the course. Frances, the assistant facilitator, partnered me for some of the practical exercises and was so encouraging and helpful. I also met a teacher who proved to be a great motivator and study partner. We now attend the annual ‘Happiness and Its Causes conference’ in Sydney together, of which Langley Group is platinum sponsor. 

My life was finally starting to make sense and this is where I was supposed to be right now!

 

How are you spreading your positive ripples, and how has the Diploma of Positive Psychology and Wellbeing helped you achieve this?

The ripple effect has been life changing.  In May 2016 – about half way through the course, I decided to fly to the U.K. 

Everyone has a story to tell.  At six years old I lost my father in a tragic car accident in England, while I was still in Australia.  My mother, as a passenger, endured horrific facial injuries and was hospitalised for months in England; widowed at 38 years of age with four children under twelve back in Australia. 

Meanwhile a lady named Claude read about the accident in the local journal. She rang the newspaper to locate mum’s whereabouts, visited her in hospital and liaised with medical staff.  After befriending my mother, Claude then invited mum into her beautiful grand Shropshire home to recuperate for a few months before returning on the ship to Australia.  She nurtured mum and was always there with a comforting and positive word when required – mum had met an angel. 

I had grown up with this story of Claude and her incredible kindness and always longed to visit her.

So I flew to Shropshire to meet Claude as she was then 88 – I felt time could be running out. 

I knew I was ready with my newfound knowledge and positive psychological tool kit as my confidence and happiness had increased and I had renewed enthusiasm. 

I knew I needed to fulfil this psychological need – little did I know this would be life changing too.

Rosie Garrisson-1

Gorgeous Claude was so excited to see me and couldn’t believe I had flown all that way just for her – ripples!  It was the least I could do to reveal my enormous appreciation and gratitude.

I was able to finally ask all the questions about what had happened all those years ago and why she did it. It turns out that Claude had come to the U.K. from France at 18 to marry an Englishman, so she knew what it was like to be a foreigner and her heart went out to mum.

Meeting Claude was the most amazing experience and I was finally able to complete the puzzle.  Upon returning home I felt a huge wave of calm – the transformation has been remarkable!

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Since my trip and completing the Diploma my life has completely changed – my husband has semi-retired, we have sold our dream home, built a new home and embarked on a sea-change.

My husband is a lot calmer, my anxiety has ‘gone out the window’, my self confidence is high and I have a new purpose in life. I practise positive psychology daily, am enjoying my new career path and developing myself further. My family are happier too with a stronger and resilient mother and wife who can now hold her head up high – not easy being only 5”1. I now feel a complete person.

I want to share my story and how I got to where I am today using positive psychology tools.  I would also like to assist people with anxiety and depression, and help them to enhance their happiness and wellbeing. I now have a formal qualification and can fulfil my passion for teaching others. The world is my oyster!

 

As you can see the Diploma has had an enormous positive impact on my life and none of this would have been possible without the Langley Group. I thank Sue Langley, Frances and the rest of the team for bringing this all to fruition!    

 

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Want to know more about the 10653NAT Diploma of Positive Psychology and Wellbeing?

We offer nationally accredited training and professional development in positive psychology. Designed and delivered by world-class facilitators and experts, our course offers university-level content and inspiring applications. Our team live and breath this approach, synthesising science into simple, practical tools anyone can use. Learn More

About the Author: Sophie Archibald

Sophie Archibald

Sophie manages marketing for the Langley Group, helping people around the world use positive psychology, neuroscience and emotional intelligence to flourish. She holds a BSc in Psychology from the University of Exeter, is accredited in the Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test (MSCEIT) and is currently studying the Langley Group Institute’s Diploma of Positive Psychology and Wellbeing.

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