Authors: Phil Barker
Event: 2003 TheMHS Conference
Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers
Abstract: The experience of mental distress, and the appreciation of what recovery might mean for people, is unique. Mental health professionals, however, often feel duty bound to translate the richness of people’s stories, into the anodyne language of mental health-speak. Most models of mental health practice appear to prevent professionals from getting close enough to people to gain insight into the complex meanings of their human distress. Little wonder that they are often seen to be lacking in sensitivity and understanding – qualities, which depend on emotional connections that bridge the professional-consumer divide.
The Tidal Model is a person-centred approach to mental health recovery, which seeks to reveal the person’s latent potential for finding personally meaningful solutions to emotional distress and its associated life problems. The role of the professional, and other interested parties is to enable people to explore their experience, and the myriad ways of undertaking the journey of recovery.
Currently the subject of a range of evaluative projects in Europe, Japan, Canada and New Zealand, the Tidal Model seeks to return compassionate caring to the forefront of mental health care. Although research-based, the Tidal Model acknowledges the central role of creativity, especially in developing genuinely collaborative relationships between people in distress and those who seek to help them begin the recovery journey.
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