The ChangesSteps to Recovery programme has been developed in response to the need for people who suffer from mental distress to have a clear and structured path to assist in recovering from mental illness.
The Steps to Recovery programme consists of modules that are used as discussion points in the meetings to consider ways we can help ourselves to make positive changes in our lives. At each of our support groups, we have 10 – 20 minute discussions that are based around these modules. This encourages people to challenge themselves and aids in the recovery process.
Detailed information about the programme is given to people when they attend our support meetings.
Very briefly, they are:
1. Admit there is a problem
What do we mean by a problem? A problem is anything that is stopping you from living your life how you would choose to.
2. Take action
This is about taking responsibility for finding ways to help you manage your difficulties. It’s not the same as ‘pulling yourself together’, it’s about accepting what you can change and taking action where you can.
3. Trust and cooperate
To get the most out of the help that is available, we need to be willing to discuss, listen, learn and act on it, and we need to be able to trust it.
4. Get the power
Regain your own power to help yourself – take advice and support to regain inner strength.
5. Develop personal resources
We have symptoms which work against us and we have personal resources or tools that help fight them.
6. Begin personal evaluation
We need to find out what’s working for us and working against us. Looking closely at our ‘wellness tools’ can help us to see what we need to do to move forward.
7. Cultivate healthy forms of thinking
Healthy thinking promotes healthy behaviour, a mixture of these helps us to either change and/or accept unhealthy feelings.
8. Cultivate healthy forms of behaviour
Healthy behaviour results from healthy thinking and both help us to improve our lives.
9. Realise that feelings may not be facts
Sometimes our unhealthy thinking results in unpleasant feelings that trick us into believing they are true. If we can see them for what they are, we don’t have to let them hurt us.
10. Get on with your life
Don’t put your life on hold until everything is perfect. Do what you can now, in spite of your problem, and you may find that there is still pleasure and success to be found in some areas of your life.
11. Give it time
We encourage realistic expectations for how long it may take for you to learn to manage your problem. There is no quick fix.
12. Pass it on
Give back! Helping others is a powerful way for you to appreciate how far you have come and it is empowering to help someone else.