From the Church

Church responds to members’ mental health challenges with new self-reliance materials


The Church recently launched a new self-reliance manual titled Emotional Resilience. The manual and its companion course aim to help participants build spiritual and practical skills to help them better care for their body, mind, emotions, and relationships. The manual defines emotional resilienceas:

  • “The ability to adapt to emotional challenges with courage and faith centered in Jesus Christ.”
  • “Helping yourself and others the best you can.”
  • “Reaching out for additional help when needed.”

The course was rolled out for testing programs at the end of 2020 at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic and received tremendous feedback and interest.

Lori Harding, Welfare and Self-Reliance Services Manager, said of the new course, “Recent major natural disasters coupled with the onset of the pandemic has really affected a number of individuals of all ages in my region . . . I know the Lord knew we needed the blessings found in the self-reliance groups at such a time as this.”

Other previously approved self-reliance courses include “Personal Finances,” “Starting and Growing My Business,” “Education for Better Work,” and “Find a Better Job.” Whereas these courses center on applying spiritual principles to more temporal needs, the new “Emotional Resilience” course focuses on fostering emotional and mental health.

“The program taught me so much about myself, how to process my emotions in healthy ways, and how to create intentional habits that lead to better wellness,” participant Alyssa Free told Newsroom. “These skills, coupled with the gospel of Jesus Christ, really can help us achieve a spiritual, emotional and physical balance in our lives.”

You do not have to be enrolled in a formal self-reliance course through your ward or stake to benefit from these new materials. Chapters and topics such as developing healthy thinking patterns, managing stress and anxiety, understanding sadness and depression, and overcoming anger can be helpful for anyone dealing with mental health challenges or emotional difficulties.

For example, watch this video about perfectionism that the manual highlights in a chapter on stress and anxiety:

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Video Companion
Perfectionism: Will I Ever Be Good Enough?

All the videos and manuals for the Church’s self-reliance courses, including “Emotional Resilience,” can be found here.

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