I have found the Open Dialogue foundation training to be engaging, thorough and full of opportunity to reflect on one's own practice and in a broader sense one's way of being in the world. The reading list satisfies my interest in contextual and theoretical information whilst the role plays and exercises provide the experiential learning that is so vital. I have cherished the opportunity to learn alongside others in this rich environment.
I attended the 2016/17 Foundation training. It was a well thought out course, delivered by very experienced, competent and professional trainers. Whilst they brought a wealth of material and experience it was clear that they were attentive to the process and adapting to the needs of the current situation. It was clear that the trainers had so much to offer. From this they created a structured programme and provided ample written hand-outs. However it was the experiential aspect of the training that really had an impact on me. Being allowed to practice skills with knowledgable support and guidance was of great value. And the course was backed up by a full useful resource of reading material.
I am one of the trainers in training on the 3-year Open Dialogue (OD) Training with Nick Putman as an "architect" behind this very unique education where we work together with the very best trainers with in OD. It has been a very special journey to join the whole training group, 20 participants and the 9 trainers in training. Full of challenges, joy, tears, pain, inspiration, new knowledge and so many shared experiences. All this has given me strength to continue with my work and it has been an evolving rollercoaster I would not be without. I could have read thousands of books and still not have learnt what I have learnt during this educational journey.
The Open Dialogue UK Foundation Training is the most relevant professional development training I have undertaken. I have appreciated the patient guidance of our four highly skilled trainers who have structured the program in such a way as to create the conditions in which the Open Dialogue approach can be directly experienced - a powerfully effective way of learning. I highly recommend training in Open Dialogue to others who are seeking a therapeutic approach that has been extensively researched and demonstrated consistently better outcomes in mental healthcare over the past 30 years.
Walking through the Open Dialogue path is an inspiring way of re-thinking and refreshing our professional and life perspectives. The Open Dialogue Foundation Training is a gem in the international mental health panorama that highlights and spread around a deep sense of respect for others.The solid clinical experience of the trainers, gently offered to the participants, becomes an easy access to better understanding interactions among human beings. To me, the Open Dialogue process is becoming a new open state of mind.
I have appreciated how thoughtfully — even exquisitely — tuned the sequence of the training is, giving me the direct experience of doing the work with a dialogical perspective. As the training proceeds, the experience takes on a progressively more systemic perspective, so that we gradually attain the feeling of being able to bring this radically (and yet basic) shift in perspective to our work, on whatever scale or whatever systemic level we might be able to apply it. The readings are all profound and work together with the in-class exercises to produce a powerful shift in orientation that encompasses both work and private life, if one is open to it.
I am finding the Foundation training hugely expiring and formative for my personal and professional journey. I believe the training is very well thought in every detail. The theory is very robust and taught in a very comprehensible way. The training is balanced with role plays and exercises that I find essential and extremely useful and very emotionally touching.
I highly recommend the Open Dialogue Foundation Training at Open Dialogue UK. We have a wonderful group of trainers, highly experienced and each bringing their own individuality to the work. It is such a luxury to have them all embodying Open Dialogue. This training is a gem in providing a space to explore in depth how to establish dialogic relationships. My cohort is an incredibly rich and international group with people of all ages, gender and backgrounds. And Open Dialogue is the first setting where I have truly not experienced the 'them and us' division and everyone gets a chance to get heard. A wonderfully practical training that, mostly through role plays and exercises, allows for a shift towards Dialogic practice. Don't miss out.
The Open Dialogue Foundation Training includes many practical exercises that are extremely well thought out, and enjoyable to do. The two days spent in small groups talking about our Family of Origin was an unforgettable and healing experience.
Highly recommend this course, it has challenged me however has really given me skills that I didn't even know I had! It is inspiring, humane and helpful, I do think it is the way forward. The course is run by experienced practitioners that have oodles of wisdom that they are willing to share, that's an enriching experience. The connectedness with the group is strong and meaningful which leads to greater learning as we feel able to take risks "its ok to make mistakes". I have thoroughly enjoyed my foundation course and very keen to carry on now with the three year course too, its fascinating and leaves you wanting more! My practice and private life are both improved with this approach and it is the internal work that we do to embody this and something Mia (mentor) said was "it is a way of being" which I whole heartedly agree with and wish to aspire to.
This training has been transformative for me. When I joined the training I expected to learn how to 'do' Open Dialogue. I was healthily skeptical of what 'doing' Open Dialogue meant, but I expected to learn structured skills ... as if I would enter into the Open Dialogue conveyor belt and emerge three years later skilled up and ready to go. Yes, I have learnt a lot during my time on the course ... enough to feel more confident as a practitioner ... yet it is no conveyor belt. What struck me from the first week is the you don't 'do' dialogue ... you work towards living it. The dialogical approach, for me, includes a deep respect for others backed up by the development of a smorgasbord of ways of supporting ourselves and the families and networks we work alongside to truly be with and hear one another. Listening to those experienced in dialogic practice alongside the opportunity to deeply explore the subject from many different angles is helping this approach 'bed in' inside me. It's influencing the way I speak, the way I train and the way that I work ... not replacing my existing experience and skills, but enhancing and adding extra textures to them. I've relished the opportunity to walk this path alongside a range of international trainees - from different contexts, backgrounds and perspectives. Whilst there is much to love about this training, the highlight for me has been the Family of Origin groups. I've already spent years exploring my origins and how I came to be where I am, but I didn't fully appreciate the transformative nature of this part of the course. It challenged me to engage with my origins and family in a different way, opening up insights that I never expected alongside a small and supportive group who were each going through similar and different journeys with their own lives. Aside from the benefits to me as a human being, this process has helped me to more fully understand what it is we ask of families and social networks when we engage them in a dialogic process. I would not want to practise Open Dialogue without this part of the course - it feels essential to me. How can I ask something of someone that I am unwilling to explore in my own life?
Open Dialogue Approach and Practice for me is the most humaine way of helping people in mental health crisis. The approach appealed to me due to my background experience on how mental health crisis is dealt with in my African community. Little did I know that the training would open me up to a more understanding of myself and my relationships. I am now exposed to the search of discovering myself, my relationship with my parents, my children, my grandchildren and my wider social network. The Open Dialogue is the fundamental original relational approach to life and living while the training is once more equipping me with the tools for this original relational way of living. It's to a breath of fresh air.
As I move a little closer towards the end of my career in mental health nursing I feel that the training has helped me reconnect to the values that led me towards this vocation. This has been refreshing for my practice within a Crisis Resolution and Home Treatment Service. It has further changed how I think about and engage with individual clients, colleagues and social networks. I do not think this would have happened quite so powerfully if I had chosen a more conventional psychotherapeutic education. This training is different to any other I have encountered. Thankfully it seems far removed from the banalities of prescribed learning outcomes and powerpoint that stultify my learning. The trainers have created a living programme that honours the principles of human encounter and openness. My sense is that the dialogism we seek to engender with others is equally enacted within the training group. Difficulties and differences can be spoken and respected. The learning, including family of origin and supervision has felt enlightening and challenging as we co-jointly seek to understand more of ourselves and each other through our work together.
Open Dialogue has the potential to make a positive change to your life as well as make a significant impact on the future care of those suffering mental dis-ease. The programme will stretch you and encourage you to change how you communicate with others as well as yourself, your own inner dialogue! I would thoroughly recommend it to anyone with any interest in the care of others. At every professional level it will make an impact should you allow this process to change you. My only word of caution is that it will challenge others fearful of change and concerned with maintaining "control". I would point out to them that the current levels of "control" have produced a world where few parents say they are happy to pass this on to their children.
I think all the presentations were wonderfully concise. Brief but packed full of discourse that was both exciting and interesting and provocative and assuring and informative and inspiring. Such a wonderfully diverse range of speakers too, covering so many elements of open dialogue; it's applications, it's successes, it's progression. It was truly something wonderful to partake in. I think the panel reflection is a wonderful format to include and it's absolutely enhanced the day. To have such prominent individuals sharing their experiences, perceptions and thoughts in relation to the presentations serves to further strengthen the importance of this approach in transforming the treatment people receive when they are at greatest need and vulnerability.
The presenters were incredibly knowledgeable and spoke with much passion and depth. I found inspiration and hope in their words, that there is an alternative to the 'medical' model within mental health care. The tide is turning, and I would like to be a part of this movement.
Brilliant, well organised and uplifting event which showed worldwide developments in dialogic practices.
It was good to discover how much the Open Dialogue approach has in common with my current training as a humanistic counsellor, and to find support for the idea that respecting individual experience and accepting uncertainty are not 'complementary' practices but fundamentally therapeutic.
The presentations showed a good variety of speakers, all of whom were relevant and interesting. I liked the introduction by Jaakko who explained the approach and how it developed. Loved the double act of the German trainers, entertaining and honest. Great to hear from the psychiatrist "Russell" and the medical director. My favourite speaker was Olga, mainly because her story was so impressive and honest.
[Open Dialogue] should be available to all who want it or need it. It is common sense. It is the way psychiatry and all mental health units should be working. It makes perfect sense. It is extremely frustrating that it is not available for my daughter and my family.
I think [Open Dialogue] is the way forward for mental health care and support. Even in a non-purest form it is streets ahead of the 'doing to' care that if often provided at present.
Love [the Open Dialogue approach] - difficult and simple
Wonderful - [The Open Dialogue approach] is the future
I was impressed that people came from the USA, Germany, Finland, Sweden etc to present, and that those presentations were beyond Open Dialogue while being in the spirit of Open Dialogue. For me the most engaging presentations tended to be from the peers. They used plain english and their own 'turn of phrase'.
I love [Open Dialogue]. It’s what I am about...well trying to be about...'embracing difference' in this case by engaging is a respectful honest dialogue.
[The Open Dialogue Conference] was a major event, providing an excellent opportunity for exchanging information and learning on the Open Dialogue approach from the best worldwide experts by profession and by experience. Thank you for making it possible.
There was a powerful mix of presentations and we stayed for the whole day which to be honest we weren't expecting to.
It was great to hear about the success of projects where peers are involved - e. g. Parachute NYC. It was also good to hear that Open Dialogue can work within an NHS setting (Dr Razzaque's presentation). Also good to hear about the first steps of Open Dialogue in Poland and Italy, where culture, history and language could at first be seen as barriers or even grounds for incompatibility.
[The presentations were] succinct, informative & well delivered.
An approach that makes sense of mental illness & its context. It's strengths based & real recovery focused. So simple, yet to implement needs real organisational drivers, with mental mealth practitioners pivotal within this total paradigm shift. I hope to see it within my career as the 'norm'.....
Appreciated the combination of appropriate emotional candidness, and content about Open Dialogue practice and developments.
[The panel reflections were] an essential part of the conference, providing an indication of the form of Open Dialogue practice, and also as a reflection of what delegates also may be thinking/feeling in response to the presentations.
My thoughts and feelings were articulated by people who spoke (presenters, delegates) at the conference: an approach that 'makes sense', seems simple/straight forward, with the complexity coming in the practice of it. Open Dialogue appears to be a set of principles to work from, rather than a theory to apply, which I particularly appreciate - I was interested that people seem to feel like they are practicing elements of Open Dialogue anyway in their work, and I expect this is why.
I particularly liked Jaakko’s presentations on the history and the features of the Open Dialogue approach. It made me think about how different things could be in my own professional context and how far they are now from getting there. I particularly like the way the Open Dialogue approach questions power and is willing to create a space where all voices are heard and counted.
I found the reflections from the panel very interesting and inspiring and a great way to bounce ideas and reflect on experiences. I was particularly interested in reflections about the meaning of suffering and the cultural meaning attached to it as well as the need for honesty about why mental health professionals end up working in mental health systems. I think it is a common sense approach that fits in really well with my beliefs, ideas and values as a human being about how we need to deal with people in distress. Unfortunately, the reality of the context where I work is very different but it has really inspired me and given me hope to keep on learning and wanting to change things. Very inspiring and powerful conference.
The panel members spoke eloquently and were able to express complex ideas clearly and sensitively. I learnt more about the emotional and practical aspects of applying the approach and the various concerns that different parties involved may have. It is very exciting and interesting and embraces the humanity of clients, families and help-giving rather than reducing people to boxes and diagnoses. Thanks for organising such an important event!
It was really refreshing to hear about a truly person centred approach to supporting people in distress. The vignettes were particularly moving and inspiring, reminding me of how I want to work with people and how hard it is sometimes in a system built on the medical model. The reflections mirrored the model itself and brought up some interesting discussion, highlighting some of the challenges of implementing Open Dialogue. I think it's the way we should have always worked with people in distress. Unfortunately human distress has been pushed into the medical model which has distracted from what really matters which is the social network and support that people need not merely fixing with a tablet and being sent back to the same difficult circumstances that made them distressed in the first place. I felt moved and inspired as I have felt for a long time that our mental health system sometimes caused more harm than good and we are long overdue a major change to how we support people in distress.
I really hope that this approach can be rolled out across the UK.
All presenters were interesting and informative. The different styles kept my attention. The personal accounts of how the Open Dialogue approach is in use were very helpful. I hope the Parachute Project evidence is as positive as Western Lapland’s.
I think the panel reflections in the Open Dialogue way gave an extra dimension to the presentations. I learnt more about how Open Dialogue has a basic philosophy. This avoids the need for prescriptive manuals. It enables a flexible approach with different people with differing needs, in variable situations, cultures and countries. I learnt the value of Peer Support and how this helps influence perspectives. The approach is respectful of all involved. It encourages equal value to each viewpoint, shared responsibility and acceptance, although the pathway is rocky, a positive outcome is much more likely.
I like the results [of the Open Dialogue approach]. I like the idea of never talking about people behind their backs, and even including them in staff supervision, as in my experience it is these two situations which make things go wrong for people. I like the idea of the 'unknowing' stance and the professional learning from the service user, as the expert in their own life. I like professionals not constantly hypothesising and as a result not really listening to what people are saying or connecting with them. I like the idea that the whole problem and the whole solution does not only lie within the individual as a result of a defect in them that has to be fixed. I like the recognition of the social and environmental causes of mental distress and how these factors can maintain it, or help to resolve it.
I really like the [Open Dialogue] approach and I think it could have a really positive impact on current UK practice.
Our university group, including myself, thoroughly enjoyed the seminar and I feel I gained a lot from it. It's really promising and inspiring that such an approach is beginning to be recognised in the UK and that you are making the effort to spread the word of such a successful approach! Thank you so much! I think [Open Dialogue is] a very exciting approach that clearly has evidence of its success within mental health; I would love to see this approach being widely used in the UK as it seems like such a valuable approach that could prevent admission to hospital and work with people’s support networks to keep people well and living their lives!
I learned a lot from the day and it was good to have so many people from different backgrounds because it gave us other perspectives. To hear that in some cases patients recover within 2 years people and go back to work, now that is impressive. Also that medication is not the only route to recovery. I am very inspired by the Open Dialogue approach. It feels like a very human way of treating people with psychosis. There were lots of aspects that I found very appealing, like the main focus is keeping the dialogue open and not coming up with solutions straight away. The person and their network are included from the start. One of the things that came up for me is that the Open Dialogue approach could be used at all times. In my case I feel I can make little changes from where I work. Other people in my group were quite adamant it needed it be from top level i.e, government layer. If that is the case then still use the Open Dialogue approach with the government layer, so that means not making assumptions nor judgements and keep the flow open. Treating everyone in a human respectful way. I do feel very strongly that we (the ones participating at the seminar) aren't the only ones who want a change from what is offered at the moment for people who are experiencing psychosis there are lots of us who feel it’s time to change what is not working. Attending the seminar gave me some really helpful tips of where to start.
I enjoyed the presentations. I found the discussion about the 12 principles especially useful. I also thought the inclusion of the excerpt from the DVD was really good. There was a real mix of people at the seminar from a wide variety of backgrounds, including service users and this added to the diversity of the small group discussions. I really like [the Open Dialogue approach]. It fits very well with my core principles in relation to what feels right and ethical when working with people with any level of mental, emotional, and wellbeing difficulties. It also fits well with my background in systemic family therapy. A very enjoyable day. I hope there will be more to come!
Very positive about [the Open Dialogue approach], have used many elements of it in my own work. Hope it will spread!
Presentations were clear and easy to understand. I thought it was valuable for each individual to participate and be able to have an opinion and say. I feel quite confident having listened to the presentations that it will need to be a definite to be used and added to people’s care plans. I think [Open Dialogue] is an approach which should have been used in this country years ago not only in this country but throughout the psychiatric system worldwide, which I feel sure many thousands of people would not have had to suffer as they have done year in and year out. Just to say 'thank you' for all the hard work you are doing in spreading the word about this approach and to say I am really excited about the changes that seem to be happening in the psychiatric system. Some 70 years ago there was a paradigm shift in the treatment of the mentally ill when the psychiatric drugs came into being but we have seen that they are not the answer by far and it is time for another paradigm shift with a more natural and compassionate approach to the treatment of sufferers.
[The presentations] gave a really clear good flavour of the approach.
In one day from knowing nothing I feel I understand the principles of the approach and it has had an impact on my practice. I think this is really good for just one day of learning. [The Open Dialogue approach] is really ethical and forward thinking. I think it is a very progressive empowering approach.
[The presentations] were very clear and informative. [The Open Dialogue approach] makes perfect sense to us who have experience of caring for a person with psychosis.
I am enthusiastic about [the Open Dialogue approach]- it seems to me to be a great way forward for both staff and patients. I am excited about the role of peers within it.
Ten days on I am continuing to be inspired by the approach and have had many discussions about it. I hope it is an approach that our Trust considers for its training plan for 2015/16 and if not for 2016/17. One stumbling block will be NICE guidance and I hope the results of the five year study will be brought to NICE's attention so that this approach can be included in NICE recommendations for treatment for acute psychosis presentations and looked at in the context of ongoing development of Early Intervention services nationwide. Thank you very much for bringing the approach to the UK.
I liked the way the presenters talked to each other through the seminars almost demonstrating what the Open Dialogue approach might look like in a group. I love [the Open Dialogue approach]!
I really like the [Open Dialogue] approach and I think it could have a really positive impact on current UK practice.
I found [the presentations] all very human. It was refreshing to have presenters that showed a bit of themselves. I liked the way they used self deprecating humour too. I love [the Open Dialogue approach]. It is a cultural shift from working for a public service here - more like the kinda culture you get in a MIND project run largely by volunteers. I am very committed to dialogue in my life - the kinda dialogue where you offer your ideas but do not hang onto them; this seems to be part of the Open Dialogue approach. It's more of an 'us' approach. I am also very committed to community building; this too seems to be at the heart of Open Dialogue which seems to help to forge meaningful relationships in a person's network. I used to work at a community hospital where we shared the resource with our patients eg the kitchen, had Bar B Q's together. It was a very friendly place for folk to come as patients unlike the other venues in the county. Now it has changed, the way forward being far more clinical, with locked doors, and no secretary bringing water for a dog or making tea for people in the waiting room. It seems to me the Open Dialogue approach would be more in the spirit of how things were. In my heart I feel Open Dialogue is the way forward, it's a very important cultural shift, [I] may even train in it.
I found the whole idea around open dialogue very interesting and working in this way would be more beneficial to patients and family.
Generated lots of ideas, questions. Enjoyable and interesting day. Inspiring stories about how this can be used.
[The Open Dialogue approach] sounds a great way of treating mental illness, very individual & holistic, great to implement, plan quickly to prevent waiting & worsening of condition...could be cost effective
I really liked the way the presentations were made: calm, respectful, thoughtful, very interesting, sometimes funny - thank you! I was delighted with the personal and warm quality of Kari's presentation and also the way he delivered it. I think that I learned and re-learned some of the key points: principles, elements of the method etc - but the main and most rewarding learning was experiential in terms of absorbing the 'style' with which each of the presenters conducted their deliveries - learning from their example. (I think mirror neurones had a role in this). Very interested [in the Open Dialogue approach], want to use as much of it as possible.
I learned a great deal from other attendees at the conference. It was a valuable opportunity to consolidate ideas about open dialogue approaches and share thoughts with others about how to implement this in UK settings. Hoping to continue to work on developing OD in practice and to keep in touch with those I met at the weekends. The seminars happened at a time when there seems to be a genuine movement towards change in mainstream mental health services. These seminars may be an important part of the process of shifting from entrenched attitudes based on containing risk to that of finding novel ways of working with unusual states of mind and emotional distress that reduce the need for legislative power and medical intervention.
I love [the Open Dialogue approach]! It fits my values best of all the approaches and ways of thinking I have come across thus far.
At first was a bit confused about what we were supposed to be discussing but found the group discussion very helpful by approaching it in a relaxed manner. The compassion of the workers shone through....
There was a good balance between presentations, demonstrations, theory and group exercises.
Presentations were good and informative. It was good not to have interruptions during the presentations, but the discussion time was equally valuable. I think it was during the discussions that the attitude of openness to ideas, and not having all the answers, of the Open Dialogue team, really came across. The very qualities, I think, that when used with clients make this approach so successful. Many thanks for organising the conference and introducing this approach to UK.
I am now reading up more to equip myself with some of the important elements of working in this way and will incorporate some elements within my practise and experiment in using them in different contexts. I have brought some of it already into my facilitation of training.
The presentations were interesting, clear, inclusive and of a good length. After the seminar I felt that I understood the basis for the Open Dialogue approach very well indeed; the importance of a quick response, the importance of the context within which the person was suffering, the importance of a democratic approach and, of course the importance of the listening skills of the clinicians.
I thought [the Open Dialogue approach] was brilliant. Why isn't it being implemented elsewhere? Surely the success of this approach coupled with its attractive economic model would make it more than appealing to mental health institutions.
You both embodied the approach so elegantly. I was left feeling highly impressed with your exquisite skills.
So inspiring and validating to see how well this approach has been developed. A real boost to know that this stuff really works and can be organised in statutory systems. The future for all health care with this client group is my hope. Outstanding, the best thing I have attended in years. Thank you Mia and Nick.
I believe it is definitely a way forward for the mental health services here. When people are involved in their care they are more empowered and determined to deal with their issues.
I think it is a very promising approach, especially for the far too clinical and far too individualised and medicalised UK system.
I think it's very interesting and very admirable that the outcomes are so positive. I certainly think that lessons could be learned elsewhere about using this approach to improve practice and outcomes. It would be interesting to explore which aspects of the approach are most helpful and how these can be applied realistically in alternative settings in this country, and elsewhere.
It was interesting to learn how open the clinicians were with each other, the client and the family.
Well balanced and interesting. There were things on the slides that were not read out but I could follow it all and it added extra content and richness to the presentation. Well done.
As it's been said and quoted in the presentation it is very simple and very complex at the same time. It shows by contrast how far away we went in the UK from a reasonable, humane, experience-near health care, which is quite sad. At the same time Open Dialogue raises hope and promise. I can only wish it does what it says and I will definitely follow it up and study further with the intention of implementing it or aspects of it if I get the chance.
Very interesting, Would be keen to know about UK centres applying this approach.
Very interested and keen to connect it to Narrative/Social Constructionist ideas as well as the more modernist approaches to therapy prevailing in the current NHS climate.
I am very inspired by [the Open Dialogue approach] and it gives me hope for a better way of responding to people experiencing emotional distress. I have been appalled at how brutal and inhumane conventional mental health services are in the UK (through family experience) and there is an urgent need to find a better way of going about things. The Open Dialogue approach brings a sense of optimism that things can get better, though we've got a long way to go.
I was really pleased that there was an OD event in the UK, and excited about this as a first step towards developing this approach in this country. It was good to talk with others who attended the seminar, to find out about things already going on - for example, someone talked about a London MH service where they're using and OD approach routinely for CPA meetings. It's encouraging to know that things like that are already happening and I hope this seminar will be part of steady progress with mainstreaming these ideas about a more democratic concept of mental health and illness.
I noted how what you were saying was 'embodied' - grown on experience and dedication - very enjoyable.
As I did not know anything about open dialogue I was amazed about the evidence you presented and especially about the democratic role distribution - for instance nurses trained in group therapy, home visits etc.
I think I would like to do the training - and I tell everyone about it! It's all very thorough, open minded and direct - liked it.
I found the small group discussions very useful. It was helpful to hear opinions and stories from different backgrounds. When we all came together and listened to the issues discussed by each group it was really good - so many more ideas came up than I would have ever been able to think of myself.
I found the presentations very interesting and informative. The length of the presentations was good. It was nice that members of the audience were able to ask questions throughout the presentations and the presenters did extremely well in answering all the questions. They also showed great patience.
I really valued meeting and talking with people/hearing their various experiences, views and wisdom, and the lively discussions we had! I learnt much more about the theory, principles, values and practice.
I especially appreciated learning more about their staff team working, and support system which feels absolutely pivotal to get right for this approach to work. I feel especially that it is crucial to get the systems and culture right, that staff need to feel safe and supported, respected and highly valued/listened to in order to be able to do the same, and 'hold' the situation with people/families experiencing psychosis in 'crisis'/challenging situations. For this to happen it strikes me that there needs to be a pretty high degree of personal skill and sophistication in self awareness - to achieve the level of honesty, authenticity and congruence necessary to be able to work in an equally authentic way with people.
I find [the Open Dialogue approach] very inspiring and very much resonates with how I've worked in the past, e.g. as an Art Therapist; in services with people with learning difficulties and in staff development and training. However, although I know very little about Finnish culture/mental health services in general, it seems to me that this is very different to this country... e.g. from watching the video you showed, their committment to working democratically seems to permeate their way of being in quite a deep personal way - for example it feels like there's much less attachment to 'ego' in how they spoke about their work and how they were with each other. So I feel for this approach to work here, there is a massive challenge in working to address what we understand about democratic working, cultural and group norms and how this impacts us on a personal level.
I was well impressed at the level of respect demonstrated - that the staff discuss everything in the presence of the person/family they're working with and work hard to always include them; that they work hard to 'mirror' people's language/terminology etc; that they work so much with, and trust in the 'process' - rather than playing the role of 'expert' or trying to fix things, solve 'the problem' and so on.
I guess what I find remarkable is how this approach so clearly demonstrates how - the pure power of withness...being truly present and being alongside (as we say in Samaritans) someone through the process... honouring the experience etc, is the key to real and lasting healing and recovery.
I see [the Open Dialogue approach] as the most beneficial, intelligent, engaging, normalising approach to, not just what is termed psychosis, but any form of mental distress. Sadly most mental health service managers and execs have neither interest in, curiosity about, nor knowledge of it.
[The small groups discussions] were useful as a means of digesting and reviewing the preceding content. Also socially good enabling introduction and networking with fellow attendees.
Great day. So good to learn more from someone who had actually visited Lapland and witnessed the approach in action.
Nick gave a great presentation about the ideas inspiring the project and its history. Also he conveyed the heart of his experience there and the sense of commitment of the people involved. [The Open Dialogue approach] is great in its 'simplicity' and democracy, inspiring.
Very good indeed...appreciated your being open to discussion, questions and being able to think and respond on your seat.
I'm quite fascinated by it… Very well presented. I really enjoyed it, and learnt a lot.
It was a very enjoyable presentation. Very interesting to hear how other countries deal with psychosis.
I'd definitely be interested in attending more seminars. Many thanks for doing this one.
I found it very moving to think that one might encounter people like that when one entered a mental hospital. We should build on the momentum. Very exciting.