This op-ed in the NY Times by Elyn Saks is very inspiring. Despite her diagnosis of schizophrenia, she refused to accept the grave prognosis she received, and focused instead on how she could accomplish her dreams.
She is an endowed professor of law at the University of Southern California and also has an adjunct appointment in the department of psychiatry at the medical school of the University of California and is on the faculty of the New Center for Psychoanalysis.
She has done a lot of research on how other people with schizophrenia have also managed their symptoms and have had significant academic and professional achievements.
In her article she describes how all the participants in her research had
developed techniques to keep their schizophrenia at bay. For some people what worked was identifying triggers, for others, controlling sensory inputs, for example some people liked having simple spaces to be in while others found distracting music helpful. “Still others mentioned exercise, a healthy diet, avoiding alcohol and getting enough sleep. A belief in God and prayer also played a role for some.” One of the most frequently mentioned techniques that helped people manage symptoms was work.
“An approach that looks for individual strengths, in addition to considering symptoms, could help dispel the pessimism surrounding mental illness. Finding ‘the wellness within the illness,’ as one person with schizophrenia said, should be a therapeutic goal.”
This article is another confirmation that we should Expect Recovery – to have hope, to know that treatment works, and recovery is possible for everyone.
Printable Format of “Successful and Schizophrenic – NYTimes.com”