Nord Anglia Education
Nord Anglia
15 February, 2023

Every moment is a fresh beginning

Every moment is a fresh beginning - Every moment is a fresh beginning

With a busy schedule consisting of deadlines, class work, homework, IAs, EEs, CAS, ECAs and exam preparation we often do not have chance to reflect on our feelings and stressors. Our body is very good at sending signals, but we are also equally good at ignoring these signals.

We are pleased to share with you details of a session which was presented to our IB students today, led by Dr Yu Li Cunningham, a psychotherapist practising at Shanghai Family United Hospital.


Dr Cunningham has experience and expertise in treating patients with depression, anxiety, trauma, stressor-related disorders, and eating disorders. She is well practised in treating familial and relational issues, as well as identity development and cross-cultural issues.

李博士持有中国心理治疗师执照和美国临床心理学家执照,且拥有十多年的临床实践经验。在加入上海和睦家医院之前,李博士在美国伊利诺伊大学心理中心任职心理咨询师及进食障碍治疗小组组长,着重于危机干预以及进食障碍的诊断与治疗。李博士是美国心理学会(APA)的会员,并在APA出版的心理学期刊Journal of Diversity in Higher Education发表过文章。除了临床治疗工作,李博士还致力于临床督导工作,目前在为北京某高校多名受训咨询师和全职咨询师提供持续的督导。

Dr Cunningham is both a China licensed psychotherapist and a U.S.licensed psychologist and has over ten years of clinical experience practising psychology. Before joining Shanghai United Family Hospital and Clinics, she served at the University of Illinois Counselling Centre as a psychotherapist and chair of the Eating Disorders Treatment Team, focusing on crisis intervention as well as diagnosis and treatment for eating disorders. She is a member of the American Psychological Association and has published research in psychology journals, including the Journal of Diversity in Higher Education. In addition to her clinical work, she is also dedicated to clinical supervision and provides regular supervision to multiple clinical trainees and full-time therapists.

During this session the students reflected on three major questions and explored how to achieve a healthy relationship with stress.

  1. How stressed are you? How to attend to their own stress reactions.
  2. What stresses us? To identify the stressors in ourselves.
  3. How do we manage stress? To develop new perspectives and establish coping mechanisms.

As part of the session, Dr Cunningham shared different coping mechanisms and invited us to practise deep breathing (sometimes called diaphragmatic breathing), which is a practice that enables more air to flow into your body and can help calm your nerves, reducing stress and anxiety. It can also help you improve your attention span and lower pain levels.

In the future, we do hope that our IB students feel better prepared to acknowledge and react to their own stressors and use some of the shared techniques to minimise stresses at school and later in life.

If any students wish to talk about any related issues, they are invited to meet with their Form Tutor, their Pastoral Lead, Janice Lyke, or myself, Emma James, Assistant Head Pastoral.

Emma James

Assistant Head Pastoral