Skip to main content Skip to bottom nav

Mental Health Recovery Counseling and Treatment

Recovery Counseling and Treatment

The struggles of mental health can have a profound impact on our lives and can be overwhelming. But at one point we find the determination to stop just surviving and we start gaining back our life piece by piece. This is where the daunting yet beautiful road to mental health recovery begins.

Recovery is not straightforward progress and is unique for everyone. Recovery does not only mean “to only get better” but to achieve a satisfying and meaningful life. This journey will without a doubt have its ups and downs, new discoveries, and setbacks but over time we can look back and see how far we really have come and the strength it takes to keep going even when it’s hard.

Relevant Articles

Recovery Paths

Free & easy exercises to help you
Increasing Confidence and Self-Esteem

Learn how to grow stronger, increase confidence, overcome challenges, and become more effective in your life.

Moving Forward with Self-Forgiveness by Everett L. Worthington

Use this growth path to move forward using steps to forgive yourself and break free from the past. Steps included in this path are based on an intervention designed to promote self-forgiveness by Everett L. Worthington, Jr., PhD.

Best Songs Relating to 7 Cups: Playlist

This playlist is based on the 7 Cups Community's best song picks that make us think of 7 Cups!

Bipolar & Thriving

A path for those who live with bipolar disorder who want to thrive. This path will include a lot of options for helpful lifestyle changes (such as sleeping and eating well, mindfulness, and reducing stress).

Am I Recovering?

It’s important to recognize that recovery isn’t a synonym for a cure. With that being said, mental health recovery focuses on the individual regaining control over their emotions and lives. Mental health recovery provides the individual with strategies, techniques, and a healthy approach to managing mental health challenges while setting up achievable goals.

Recovery means gaining and developing hope, understanding of one's disabilities and abilities. It also means that the individual can engage in an active life, acquiring personal autonomy and social identity. Lastly, recovery can mean that the individual finds meaning and purpose in life and a positive sense of self.

This begs the question: So am I recovering?

The answer is personal and unique for each individual, but the most important thing is that the individual needs to think about what’s important for them and how a meaningful life would look like and take baby steps to achieve it.

The Different Types of Recovery

There are two different types of recovery even though there is often an overlap between the two:

  1. Clinical recovery: Is based on the idea that the individual or “client” gets rid of symptoms, restores social functioning through the expertise and support of mental health professionals. The treatments can include mindfulness and psychotherapy where the individual is in the care of a mental health worker. Individual group therapy, family therapy, and/or group therapy is often used during clinical recovery. An individual may need to seek support from a treatment center by joining different recovery programs. However, some clinicians might suggest individual therapy or online treatment programs to be effective treatment options.

  2. Personal recovery: Is based on individuals' experiences living with mental health problems. This recovery can be described as a deeply personal process of changing one's attitude and living a satisfying, hopeful, and contributing life. Personal recovery can aid the individual in gaining a healthy distance to their mental health problem and can share their own story. This can help others struggling to follow the path to recovery and seek help.

Healing From Mental Health Problems

Healing from mental health problems can be a hard and daunting process. Healing from mental health problems is described in the following program which includes five steps. An important thing to keep in mind is that some of these steps can be merged into each other depending on the individual. These steps are often used for individuals recovering from alcohol, addiction, and/or substance use.

  1. Precontemplation stage: The Individual in this stage denies they have a mental health problem and will avoid any conversation or intervention that tries to change them or “open their eyes”.
  2. Contemplation: Even if the individual is struggling to understand their mental health problem and the cause of it, they start to think about possible courses of action and start to reach out for help in subtle ways. If you are reading this it means you have made great progress and you are in the right place to get help!
  3. Preparation stage: The individual is fueled by their excitement and has made solid plans for their recovery. This can include a treatment plan and making peers and family members aware of their course of action to address the problem.
  4. Action stage: The individual engages in things that will change their behavior, thoughts, and/or feelings to create a change that will help heal the mental health problem. This can include getting a diagnosis, developing successful coping skills and support network skills, gaining knowledge of the mental health problem and medication. This builds the individual sense of accomplishment, achievement, satisfaction, and self-worth.
  5. Maintenance stage: The last and final stage is for the individual to help others that are struggling and help them to achieve wellness through their own healing process and their experiences. As the individual settles back to familiar surroundings and is faced with potential stressors and triggers it’s important to note that the individual still needs to adhere and “keep maintaining their healing” by following treatment plans, going to therapy, counseling, and listening to expert advice to make sure their recovery keeps progressing and the individual doesn’t relapse. Support groups can be helpful in upholding communication and relationships with others that have similar backgrounds and disorders. Groups can help the individual break barriers of fear and replace them with evidence and logical thinking.

Are There Physical Symptoms I Should Be Aware of??

In the mental health recovery process, it’s important to acknowledge and be aware of the physical symptoms that can present during the different stages. These are examples of physical symptoms you should be aware of:

  • Headaches
  • Migraine
  • Muscle tension and soreness
  • Sleep issues or disorders
  • Pain and body aches
  • Eye problems
  • Digestive issues
  • Fatigue

Another crucial aspect when it comes to physical symptoms is that the body and mind are connected interchangeably with each other. This means that the physical symptoms listed above can express themselves as psychosomatic symptoms, which means they can be linked to the individual's state of mind. Therefore it’s important to listen to your body and tune into your mental state since psychosomatic symptoms can be a great indicator of what you need to adjust to be able to live a happy and fulfilled life.

These are examples of psychosomatic symptoms you should be aware of:

  • Nausea
  • Heart palpitation and rapid heartbeat
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Trembling of hands, feet, and legs
  • Hot and/or cold flashes
  • Brain fog
  • Chronic pain

Dealing with Recovery Through Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy is a general term for treating mental health problems by talking and meeting with a psychotherapist, professional counselors, therapist, or another mental health provider. Psychotherapy helps individuals deal with recovery by learning how to take control of their life and how to respond to challenging and scary situations with healthy coping skills. The individual learns about their condition, feelings, thoughts, and behavior as well as triggers and stressors. Psychotherapy can also be provided as online treatment with online counseling. It depends on the individual's preferences.

Whether you are facing substance abuse challenges and are searching for online addiction treatment, or are in search of healthcare professionals that can support your recovery with your mental health concerns, 7 Cups is ready to support you. 7 Cups offers therapeutic services and is available via the internet on a browser as well as on the app via mobile devices. Once subscribed, you do not need to set a scheduled appointment but can access and message your therapist throughout the week. Depending on your concerns, psychotherapy may focus on improving your commitment to abstinence, relapse prevention, as well as other strategies and exercises to help cope with other concerns such as anxiety.

On a side note, it’s important to know that psychotherapy can sometimes delve deep into the individual’s past, which can prompt painful feelings and thoughts that have been suppressed for a long time to resurface, making the individual feel potentially emotionally uncomfortable and exposed at times. This risk can be significantly reduced if the individual is working with a skilled therapist who can match the therapy type and intensity with the individual's needs.

Featured Contributors

Lisa Meighan, MBPsS

Lisa is a licensed mental health counselor with an eclectic style of therapy to fit every client

Allison Moore

Allison is a university student passionate about mental health awareness and equality, currently studying in Bali, Indonesia.