5 ways to support mental health recovery
Mental health Recovery can be different to everyone. The meaning can be varying to each individual and each set. However, the mental health recovery definition is to feel better or finding the road to getting better.
It aims to develop the meaning of life and goals, either short or long term goal. But the realization of the power of goals, achieve on it, called Recovery.
People can be misunderstood this term because it’s so common to use in mental health practice.
In the mental health setting, especially with people living with severe mental illness; cure word replaced from recovery, mental health practitioners focus on the concept of mental health recovery. Recovery may not always refer to the process of complete recovery from a mental health problem in the way that we might recover from a physical health problem.
Recovery can mean different things to different people, however, for many; recovery is about the realization of goals, and the development of relationships and skills that support a positive life, with or without ongoing mental health problems. It doesn’t necessarily mean going back to how your life was before, but learning new ways to live your life the way you want to, and gaining control over areas of your life that might have felt out of control before.
Mental health recovery –
Recovery in mental health is not the same as the cure. Recovery means being able to create and live a meaningful life and contribute to your community, with or without mental health issues.
FOUNDATIONS: Health + Home + Purpose + Community
Recovery is about all of your life, not just your symptoms. It involves:
- Finding hope, and developing self-esteem and resilience
- Having a sense of purpose and meaning in your life
- Building healthy relationships
- Gaining independence
Don’t we all need these things to be a central part of our lives?
Working with the people living with mental illness, realized that recovery starts from Hope which took a lot of time but build a strong foundation on work on the path of recovery
Finding hope – Hope is just 4 words but carries a lot of weight in a single word. I found the meaning of hope which is suitable for working with people living with mental illness. Hope means for me to have an opportunity for a positive environment to flourish like a flower. This opportunity does not always come from the outside, initially it starts from you. The transition from me to you sometimes takes the most crucial period of life. However, Hope is the only process to influence you to enhance yourself in a better future. When, mental health professionals (Psychiatrist, Counselors, Social workers) involve the person who has lost hope in their life. Then the whole concept is to develop the relationship with the person based on trust and respect and treat them the person who is the in-charge of their life, and you are the one only, play the role as a support person. Your role is very powerful but not over-powering to another person. You provide the light to their life, which is the light of hope to look forward to their dreams.
Strength-based model –
Now, Rehabilitation shift into recovery and medical model turn into Strength base model, and the focus is not only in persons’ symptoms but the holistic approach of life, which was missing before. A lot of research shows and voices from the experiential experts ( people living with mental illness) focus on their goals, empower them to build their goals to achieve them, not treat them with medication, monotonous work, and sympathy.
This model talks about every person has a potential, and strengths. When we focus more on persistence on persons’ strengths, then their weakness is just part of their life, and the whole conversations, dreams, and goals based on their strengths. The research shows that this model is very powerful, and not to become overpowering to others person’s life. You become more a life coach in a person’s life; play a very powerful role as a game-changer.
We need to understand that mental illness is not the choice but Recovery is in our hands. Yet, the focus needs to shift in recovery and choices. People need to realize that they are not alone. Research shows that Mental illnesses are common, affecting one in five people. Many people with mental illness, including well-known celebrities, are leading very successful lives. People living with mental illness can generate hope by connecting with their peer’s support; they are also facing similar experiences. They are people who can also give you the right way of direction to move forward in your life. This is the time to accept your symptoms, become an experiential expert in your recovery to achieve your life desires and goals.
Recovery goals based on a person’s life’s desire and dream. It can be short term goals and long term goals. It can be as simple as can. For example – to go out for coffee with friends, to make more friends, build a relationship with fiancé, mother, etc. Recovery goals include your personal recovery life and professional life also. It can be more realistic and achievable for you to recovery in your life. This can be initially more based on personal’s feelings because recovery is a holistic approach it covers everything, your life desires, medication, symptoms management, Jobs, family, community, and relationships. These realistic goals are more likely to without mental health problems people.
Ups and Down –
Recovery is not a linear process. The recovery process shows ups and downs. This process, medication, and treatment are a part of life. It’s also common to have emotional ups and downs even when you are in the process of recovery. But you know you’re feeling better when the downs go away on their own, instead of people sticking around with the symptoms or downs.
People living with mental illness are the key person to take charge of their own life and also understand their symptoms, ups, and downs. Make their recovery process according to their way to get desirable results in your recovery goals. This process can do alone or mental health professionals can become their support person for their life’s goals and together they become more focused on getting independent and outcome.
Choosing your way of recovery – Individual can decide their recovery path; the person is in- charge of their life decision. Choosing their goals and what they want to do in their life is their choice. It’s a matter of giving responsibility to individuals to show they want to choose their life and goals to move forward in life. Mental health professional needs to understand the person’s feelings and respects their choices, but they play a very important role in their life which is motivating and navigating.
These are the principals of Recovery which is helpful for both people living with mental illness and mental health professionals. They both have to understand the whole recovery process goes around these important pointers-
- Recovery is an ongoing process and it is a process of self-improvement
- Recovery is about creating and maintaining a personally satisfying life
- Recovery is not just about medication and symptom management, but rather looking at all areas of life where improvements could be made. It’s about quality of life in a broad sense.
- Everyone’s recovery process looks different – each person has different needs, interests, priorities, and dedication to making positive changes
- Everyone can work towards recovery; depending on your abilities, or how severe your symptoms are right now.
- Recovery is personal as well as Clinical- Clinical recovery focuses mostly on symptom management/improvement through the use of medications and treatments whereas Personal Recovery focuses on making improvements of your life personally, socially, holistic wellness, desires, and goals. This may include attitudes, values, feelings, goals, skills, roles, meaning, purpose, self-identity, responsibility, etc.
- You have an important role to play in your recovery – it’s your life, after all!
- You get to choose what you want to work on, and how you take action
- Other people can help and support you to make positive changes, but they are not meant to be the only people putting in the effort.
- There are many ways that you can take responsibility for managing your recovery
- Empowerment means exercising your rights and responsibilities to choose and act in a way that is best for you; that will give you the outcome that you desire
- BE GOAL-ORIENTED – Once you learn how to set goals in addiction treatment, you will give yourself something productive to work on, which will help eliminate distractions and keep you on a more even emotional keel. Working with mental health professionals will give you a little bit of advantage here; because you have the benefit of an objective observer who can help you recognize your emerging patterns and working with you to manage your symptoms, also working on your goals and desires. That way, you can be a stick in your recovery process and not lose your hope and builds your community with positive people