Recovery-oriented mental health care focuses on people’s strengths and supports resilience and capacity for personal responsibility, self-advocacy and positive change.
- People have the capacity to recover, reclaim and transform their lives.
- People with mental health issues want what everyone else does.
- The personal resourcefulness, resilience and strengths of people with mental health issues are recognised and drawn upon.
- A focus on strengths motivates and assists people to feel good about themselves and believe in their capacity for personal recovery.
- Personal recovery begins when people reclaim responsibility for their wellbeing and decisions.
- ‘Nothing about me, without me’—a person is the director of the therapeutic relationship.
- The preferred setting for service delivery is in the community.
- Naturally occurring supports are preferred.
- People draw on the resources and strengths of their families and close relationships, and on naturally occurring resources, to recover.
Values and attitudesMental health practitioners and providers...
- convey their belief in people’s capacity to reach their aspirations and to shape a life rich in possibility and meaning
- acknowledge and positively reinforce people’s strengths and capacity for personal recovery
- reflect a strengths focus in attitude, language and actions
KnowledgeMental health practitioners and providers...
- know strengths-based approaches to service planning, including the incorporation of elements of positive psychology
- know and understand concepts of resilience Top of page
Skills and behavioursMental health practitioners and providers...
- actively support people to recognise and draw on their strengths to build recovery skills and capacity for self-management of their mental health
- support people as they build self-advocacy skills
- work with people to understand what works well for them in their recovery efforts
- foster people’s belief in their capacity for growth as well as their capacity to fulfil responsibilities such as parenting and personal and household management
- support people to self-manage distressing aspects of their condition like negative moods, voices, self-harm and suicidal urges
- relate supportively with people when they are distressed
- support people to self-monitor triggers and early warning signs
- support people with medication management as well as physical health and wellbeing management
- actively foster people’s resilience and recognise its impact on recovery outcomes
Recovery-oriented practiceMental health practitioners and providers...
- incorporate methods of enquiry that encourage learning and using mistakes or setbacks as opportunities for growth
- use collaborative assessment processes and service planning to amplify a person’s strengths and assets, to foster responsibility, support positive identity and nurture hope
- prompt people to consider what has worked well for them in the past
- positively reinforce people’s successes and achievements and encourage their translation into other life contexts
- support family and support people to focus on strengths and to encourage personal responsibility Top of page
Recovery-oriented leadershipMental health practitioners and providers...
- foster opportunities within and beyond the service setting for people to apply and build on identified strengths
- draw on lived expertise when incorporating strengths-based approaches into policies and procedures
- use language in assessment processes, forms and tools and data collection that emphasises strengths and personal roles and relationships
- encourage the co-design of new strength-based approaches and solutions with people who have a lived experience
- model strengths-based approaches with staff and highlight the strengths of staff.
- Use self-stigma reduction resources.
- Adopt a strengths-based model of practice.
- Develop information resources that promote positive messages and emphasise strengths.
- Rapp & Goscha 2011, Strengths model: a recovery-oriented approach to mental health services,
- Scottish Recovery Network, ‘Multimedia’, www.scottishrecovery.net/Multimedia/multimedia.html
- Scottish Recovery Network, Module 3: enabling self-direction, Realising recovery,
- Bird et al. 2012, ‘Assessing the strengths of mental health consumers: a systematic review’, Psychological Assessment, Advance online publication, doi: 10.1037/a0028983
- Leamy et al. 2011, ‘Conceptual framework for personal recovery in mental health: systematic review and narrative synthesis’, British Journal of Psychiatry, vol. 199, pp. 445–452