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Recovery, Inc. is a self-help mental health program founded in 1937 by neuropsychiatrist Dr. Abraham A. Low to assist the mentally ill in transitioning from hospitalization to the "real" world. Today it deals with a range of people, from those who have been hospitalized to those who are having difficulty coping with everyday problems. It is non-profit and non-religious, and although it uses methods devised by Dr. Low, it is operated today entirely by non-professionals. Because its methods do not conflict with other therapies, it can be used in conjunction with 12-step programs and is often recommended to patients by mental health professionals as an adjunct to their therapy.
Members today are persons with a wide range of diagnoses, including depression and bipolar (manic-depressive) disorders; psychotic disorders including schizophrenia; anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorders. There are approximately 700 groups, mainly in the United States, meeting normally on a weekly basis. The method is basically cognitive therapy, helping a person to be aware of possible errors or misconceptions in their perception of reality.
At the meetings, people bring up examples from their lives that caused them nervous symptoms like depression or anxiety. The others offer alternative ways at looking at the situation and ways to better handle similar events in the future. For example, a person may experience depression (or "lowered feelings" in Recovery language) because they are aiming for a perfect performance. Trying to be perfect or trying to appear perfect leads one to feel down if one makes even the slightest mistake. In all examples, members are encouraged to "endorse", or to remember and give themselves credit for their efforts and for their successes. Members are also told to look for any improvement. They are supposed to compare themselves just to themselves, not to some other person, like someone on a magazine cover. A major source of help from the group is hearing from people who have had much success with the Recovery methods. The hope one receives serves as strong motivation to learn the method.
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