Publication Details

Kerr, D. J. R., Deane, F. P. & Crowe, T. P. (2019). Narrative identity reconstruction as adaptive growth during mental health recovery: A narrative coaching boardgame approach. Frontiers in Psychology, 10 994-1-994-10.


Objective: The purpose of this paper is to construct a conceptual framework for investigating the reconstruction of narrative identity in mental health recovery from a complexity perspective. This conceptual framework provides the foundation for developing a health boardgame to facilitate narrative identity reconstruction.

Methods: A selective integrative review of the theoretical and empirical literature relevant to narrative identity reconstruction in recovery was conducted. Sources included books, dissertations, internet resources, and professional journals.

Findings: The reviewed material provides a conceptual framework that offers an enriched understanding of narrative identity reconstruction in recovery as a process of adaptive growth. It identifies the Hero's Journey, the life story model of identity (LSMI), and intentional change theory (ITC) as particularly relevant in informing strategies for narrative identity reconstruction. The conceptual framework can be operationalized in a narrative coaching treatment approach using a boardgame.

Conclusion and Implications for Practice: In practice, mental health professionals could use the narrative coaching boardgame to facilitate people's adaptive change with a focus on building skills to reconstruct their preferred narrative identity and foster hope. Future research should explore what aspects of narrative identity and non-linear dynamic processes of change are most important in people's recovery narratives and in particular these processes can be assessed in response to the use of the boardgame.



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