Catalina Fuster: "Bienestar 10 is a journey through self-knowledge".
We interviewed Catalina Fuster, psychologist with 30 years of experience in personal development.
Many people have a very narrow conception of what psychology is, both as an area of research and in terms of its applications to life. For example, it is common to assume that only those who have a psychopathology "go to a psychologist".
However, this scientific field is much more varied than that, and also addresses the needs and problems of people who do not have a disorder. An example of this can be found in the program Bienestar 10, promoted by the psychologist Catalina Fuster, whom we interviewed on this occasion.
Interview with Catalina Fuster: what is the Bienestar 10 program?
Catalina Fuster Bennasar is a psychologist with 30 years of experience offering psychological support and coaching services to adults and adolescents. Through her work it is clear that psychology is not limited to interventions in cases of psychopathologies, since she has developed a patient support program specifically oriented to problems and needs that go beyond psychological disorders: the Bienestar 10 program. In this interview she tells us about it.
By way of summary, what is the Wellness 10 program and why is it specifically aimed at people without diagnosed psychological disorders?
Bienestar 10 is a personal growth program, aimed at people who have no diagnosed pathology. The B10 program is aimed at all those people who want to improve their well-being and satisfaction with life, based on self-knowledge, as it allows them to enhance healthy lifestyle habits and improve the ability to enjoy the things around us.
In the first sessions, a study of the current strengths that the person has and that can be the basis for channeling their goals and promote positive thoughts, in order to increase satisfaction with life. In addition, at the end, we will measure the result and the progress obtained, and thus, be aware of the improvement achieved.
As a psychotherapy professional with more than 30 years of experience in this field, do you think that there are still many people who do not go to therapy unless they suspect they have a psychopathology?
I think there is still a part of the population that is reluctant to go to psychotherapy. I am surprised to hear, in some situations, how someone explains that, for example, their husband or wife (or other close relative) says they "don't believe" in the effectiveness of psychological work, as if that were still something unscientific or superstitious.
Fortunately, these doubts are becoming less frequent and psychotherapy is more normalized as effective care. Generally speaking, yes, I believe that intense discomfort and problems in relationships with the environment are the push for many people to seek psychotherapy.
What kind of scientific evidence supports these proposals based on positive psychology?
Positive psychology began with authors such as Seligman and is the scientific study of the strengths that allow individuals and communities to thrive. This theory is based on the belief that people want to have satisfying lives, promote what is best within themselves and improve their life experiences.
According to these authors, Positive Psychology is the scientific study of positive experiences, as well as positive individual traits and programs that help improve the quality of life of individuals, reducing the likelihood of developing psychopathologies. With this scientific basis, Seligman designed the PERMA model, from which work is also done in B10.
There are also previous antecedents in the classics of philosophy such as Plato or Aristotle, who referred to happiness as harmony between the individual and society; or as the ultimate good in itself.
From what you have seen so far, what phases does the process of change usually go through in people who go through the Wellness 10 program?
The program is divided into 10 sessions, and may include a final extra session. These are very structured sessions in which different aspects and themes are worked on to increase well-being. The program covers both personal and individual aspects, as well as other aspects of relationship with the environment.
It is a journey through self-knowledge, which aims to generate changes and provide lasting learning to address issues that may arise in the future of each person.
In the case of aspects of life that can be improved but are not limited to what happens to the person as an individual, but have to do with personal relationships, how does this program help?
First of all, it allows you to review and become aware of the relationships that are active in your current life, the quality of these relationships and the influence they have on your decision making or need for support.
From that point on, it favors that especially significant relationships are more cared for and attended to and that they represent the level of importance that each person wants others to have in their process and in their life.
What role does self-knowledge play in the adoption of psychologically healthier habits? Moreover... is it possible to promote one's own personal development without working on self-knowledge?
I believe that self-knowledge is a key element in personal development. Being able to ask ourselves what we feel, what we are afraid of, what we really like and to seek a balance between the personal and the environment around us is essential for well-being and happiness.
Without this self-knowledge, I believe that it is not possible to reach an optimal level of personal development that allows us to approach an authentic and peaceful happiness, taking into account that these are specific moments that we need to know how to identify and enjoy.
(Updated at Mar 28 / 2023)