1st Edition

Coaching Psychology for Mental Health Borderline Personality Disorder and Personal Psychological Recovery

By Martin O'Connor, Hugh O'Donovan Copyright 2022
    200 Pages
    by Routledge

    200 Pages
    by Routledge

    Traditionally, coaching psychologists have worked with people who aren’t experiencing significant mental distress or have diagnosed mental illness. This book describes an innovative and challenging project of bringing coaching psychology to the lived experience of individuals with a diagnosed mental illness, Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).

    The authors present a case for why coaching psychology needs to be constructively challenged to broaden its base and be more inclusive and of service to people experiencing BPD in particular. The book describes a coaching interaction involving coaching psychologists and a number of individuals with BPD who had completed a behavioural skills programme (Dialectical Behaviour Therapy; DBT). It explores the epistemological and practice tensions involving the dominance of clinical recovery (elimination of symptoms) in mental health services and personal or psychological recovery (originating in the narratives of people with a diagnosis of mental illness who yearn to live a life worth living).

    This book, written amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, makes a compelling case for coaching psychologists to engage with the philosophy and practice implications of personal recovery, at both professional and personal levels. It will be vital reading for those engaged in coaching psychology and for the education, training and continuous professional development of coaches and coaching psychologists.

    Preface 01. Introduction and background review 02. Mental health policy and recovery: the challenge of moving from rhetoric to reality 03. Whether coaching psychology and Borderline Personality Disorder? 04. Recovery – personal or clinical: implications for coaching psychology 05. A life worth living 06. Coaching psychology and mental distress 07. Self-understanding of the coaching psychologist and ways of knowing about recovery 08. Education, training, and continuing professional development of coaching psychologists


    Martin O’ Connor works independently as a Coaching & Clinical Psychologist, is a Chartered Psychologist (PSI) and is a registered Analytic-Network coach. He teaches & provides coach mentoring in the Masters in Positive & Coaching Psychology, University College Cork and teaches in Mary Immaculate College of Education (University of Limerick). He provides training, coaching, supervision & mentoring to individuals working in statutory & voluntary health & disability services in Ireland.

    Hugh O’Donovan is a Chartered Psychologist, teacher, author of Mindful Walking, conference speaker and principal practitioner with Hugh O’Donovan and Associates. He is Co-Founder of the 1st Masters in Coaching Psychology in an Irish University (University College Cork) as well as a founder member of PSI, DWOP, Coaching Psychology Group. He is an Honorary Vice President of International Society for Coaching Psychology.

    "The application of coaching interventions is gradually expanding into the areas that used to be 'no go' in the past. This book takes this expansion to the next level by describing how coaching can be a worthwhile intervention when addressing serious mental health issues. The authors of this book are clearly trailblazers in the coaching world."

    • Tatiana Bachkirova, Professor of Coaching Psychology, Director of the International Centre for Coaching and Mentoring Studies, Oxford Brookes University, UK