Many school districts are considering training teachers to deal with a school psychologist shortage. First Nations need more mental health services. Indigenous children suffer foster care crisis. The common thread in these news headlines is that we, as a society, country, community, and as individuals have reached the tipping point in this age of information and technology whereby information regarding our mental health and well-being need to be properly supported and easily accessible. Fortunately, when confronted with situations that are in need of a solution, humans get creative.

This is just the case with, a solution to teaching the mechanics of mental health and well being. The 45-hour course spread into a 14-week online training program equips individuals with new tools and increases their success when working with others. It demonstrates how to build and maintain supportive relationships and deepens one’s knowledge with regard to key mental health cues in areas such as business, health and wellness, education, family and community.  

According to three-time Pulitzer Prize winner, Thomas L. Friedman, lifelong learning has become the single most competitive advantage in today’s fast-paced, ever changing workplace and world. He also states that in spite of the fast-paced advancements in technology, interpersonal skills are sorely missing. Businesses and individuals that invest in developing these soft skills, resulting in a true understanding of how to connect disconnected people, will have an invaluable advantage in today’s global market. 

Dr. William Glasser, the founder of Choice Theory, would have agreed wholeheartedly. Choice Theory enables one to understand not only why individuals behave the way they do but also how people can learn to take control of their lives to get more of what they want. is an innovative program exists that marries today’s technology with Glasser’s teachings of human behaviour and gives individuals a competitive edge in today’s workplace and world.



In a recent report from BBC News the subject of mental health in the workplace is finally gaining momentum. Sue Baker, director of mental health charity, Time to Change, has over five hundred employers taking positive action by signing the pledge, which commits them to address the taboos of mental health. “It costs industry more to ignore mental health and shove it under the carpet than to deal with it.”, states Baker.  She also advises people to speak up only if it’s clear your employer supports mental health programs. Employers need to decide how they are going to address mental health in the workplace and know where to access these types of programs. ChoiceTheoryOnline is one such program that employers could direct their employees to with the benefits returning to the company through increased productivity and replacing absenteeism with a dedicated workforce.

Louis Theriault, vice president of public policy at Conference Board of Canada, says, “ The report should serve as a wake-up call”. While the cost of depression is at least $32.3 billion annually, anxiety is costing an additional $17.3 billion. These staggering numbers stem from reduced productivity and absenteeism at work. He also states, “ a large proportion of working Canadians have unmet mental health needs that prevent from performing at their peak”, as well as, “ employers need to act more strategically about the issue of mental health”. That being said, it is difficult in an increasingly competitive market for employers to decide where to invest their time and money. Offering a wellness strategy is money well spent, which is exactly what one New Brunswick entrepreneur created with an innovative program ChoiceTheoryOnline. This cost effective and easily accessible online tool was built to help individuals to better understand mental health and provide effective tools to enable them to take charge of their life, resulting in better, happier employees. 

In 1942, Canada introduced food guidelines to “promote a pattern of eating that meets nutrient needs and reduces the risk of nutrition-related diseases such as obesity, diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease”. Today, the food guide is the second most requested government publication behind Income Tax forms. Guidelines for physical health are also readily available. However, we seem to be lacking a public mental health model. Currently, a highly effective model for mental health called Choice Theory, primarily used by professionals, is gaining worldwide attention. Just as the plate above represents five food groups, Choice Theory states we have five psychological needs: Love and Belonging, Power and Recognition, Freedom, Fun and Survival. The portion or serving needed from each category varies for each individual. For instance, not everyone feels the need for a large serving of love and belonging meaning some people decide to have many children while others choose not to have any at all. It is up to the individual to determine how much of each category they need in their life to achieve a sense of well being.
What does your “Happy Meal” look like?