What is Recovery ? Mental Health Europe

Recovery, is me being the person I can be For me recovery is learning to accept what has happened and then, overcoming what has happened and go ahead with your life fighting and taking risks sometimes having success, sometimes having failures… like anybody else We talk about recovery is not waiting for the storm to pass, it is learning to dance in the rain For us I think the most important thing it is about living a good and meaningful life and that’s whether you are presenting or experiencing symptoms of mental health problems or not, it’s also for some people they describe it as an ongoing journey or a process that can last for many years if not a lifetime however for other people recovery is an end point, there is an end point at which point they consider themselves to be recovered and whatever that may means for them Recovery first of all for me means belief in yourself so if a person has this belief in his own ability to change something The first barrier is very important is the stigmatisation, the stigma Stigmatisation.. but I don’t like the word stigmatisation, I would rather describe it as discrimination Societal Attitudes, stigma and discrimination can be a real barrier I think partly that comes from the stigma and discrimination that people experience as a result of having mental health problems If you want to really start that “recovering” process you need to allow yourself the time needed to recover you cannot recover in just a minute! It’s a question of time well, there are quite a few misconceptions of recovery unfortunately I think there are two major misconceptions first one is to believe that it is a result it’s not a result, it’s really a “way” recovery is not the end of the symptoms for ever sometimes it is. that’s a good thing… well, actually I have heard about two misconceptions about recovery first it’s that recovery means absence of any symptom so you have to be completely normal, completely “usual” like any other person but this is ridiculous because we all are unique and you cannot be “usual” I think it’s sometimes unhelpful because the word recovery in relation to physical health often means cure or getting better and when we talk about recovery in mental health we don’t necessarily mean cure we do mean achieving a better state of well being but that does not mean that your life is totally free from the effects or the symptoms of mental ill-health that it is just not possible for some people who are maybe “too ill”, that it is an excuse to cut services that it’s an excuse to try get people back into work who aren’t well enough to be in employment Yes there are several misconceptions Hopeful…And possible! Recovery is about H.O.P.E I would say self belief H.O.P.E is an important aspect of recovery so having hope, holding on to hope and being hopeful for the future are all things that contribute to people beginning their journey to recovery and recovery is a journey that’s another word to describe it, it’s a journey but hope for us also means Home, Opportunity, People and Empowerement and we use that as a framework to actually identify the work that we do to support people on their journey to recovery Well, for me that one word is C.H.I.M.E I really do think it’s a really handy word it’s a nice sounding word it’s a positive word and those are all things that’s I think for me do encapsulate recovery recovery is a process Your support means everything for people It’s just empathy, respect, and solidarity! it’s to really bring themselves to the process and think of themselves as equals to and partners with the people who are accessing their services be by their side! give love, give empathy and accept risks! You have to remember that there is not “us” and “them” we all are people! If you have a friend or a member of your family who experiences mental ill-health it’s very important that you continue to be there and you continue to be yourself and you keep talking I think hope is very important but you cannot have just faith in the future hope has to be based on reality Yes where there is hope there is recovery We as professionals need to be alongside people with mental health problems or where there is hope there is the possibility of recovery I am myself today, I feel more and more connected to myself so the message is remain connected to yourself whatever the other people may think of you Don’t give up we have an extra value we have gone through certain things that nobody else have gone and we want to be as any other citizen Never give up your hopes and dreams cause I believe if you got hopes and dreams you can make them happen and there is always hope We as professionals need to be alongside people with mental health problems and supporting them on their journey, on their path to recovery I think freedom is the most important thing and to be free you have to have choices Recovery can and does happen and the more people that know about that, the better

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