Director/Lead Trainer Dr Chris Johnstone
Chris qualified in London, with distinction, as a medical doctor in 1986, after a first degree combining medicine and psychology. His interest in resilience began in the early 1980s with a research project for his first degree looking at self-help strategies to help us cope with pain.
Over the last thirty years Chris has taught self-help skills for resilience and wellbeing in a wide range of settings – as a GP, as an addictions specialist, in adult education and in the workplace. Now living in the north of Scotland, Chris set up the ResilienceforDoctors.com project as part of College of Wellbeing .com, an online learning service offering training in skills and strategies that help us cultivate wellbeing.
Chris’s interest in resilience strategies deepened when he struggled with low mood and burnout as a hospital doctor working 100-hour + weeks in the late 1980s. Recognising that endurance is only one aspect of resilience, he says, “If someone gets back problems from a poorly designed chair, we don’t train them in resilience to put up with poor conditions. Instead we’d take an ergonomic approach and redesign the chair”. Taking a similar view with working conditions, he successfully took his employers to court, setting a legal precedent ruling that whatever the hours of work in a contract, employers still had a legal obligation to protect health and safety at work.
Chris’s books include Find Your Power – a toolkit for resilience and positive change (Permanent Publications, 2nd Ed, 2010), and, co-authored with Joanna Macy, Active Hope – how to face the mess we’re in without going crazy (New World Library, 2012). He also co-presents The Happiness Training Plan Audiobook with Miriam Akhtar.
Specialist Trainer Professor David Peters
David is Clinical Director in the Faculty of Science and Technology at the University of Westminster where he directs the Centre for Resilience. He has worked as a GP, GP trainer and lecturer at St Marys medical school, before studying osteopathic medicine. From 1990 until 2005 he directed the complementary therapies programme at Marylebone NHS Health Centre, a ground-breaking Central London GP unit exploring new approaches to inner city healthcare.
David has co-authored six books and many articles about integrated healthcare. He has a particular interest in health problems where resilience has broken down (including PTSD), or where pain and fatigue overlap, and in self-care for long-term conditions.
David is a contributing trainer to the seven-module Resilience for Doctors online course.