My heritage is a mix of people who emigrated from Scotland, Ireland and England to New Zealand in the middle of the nineteenth century. There are strong family traditions of commitments to education, service and taking up opportunities. Both my grandmothers went to university, early in the twentieth century when few women did. I think it says a lot about the women that they were and the men who married them.
Auckland is my home and my husband’s home. Our children have grown up and we are also beginning to experience the joy of grandchildren. I love the outdoors, specially sailing, but also activities in mountains, caves the ocean and our beautiful New Zealand bush.
My pathway to finding the work I love has been somewhat long and winding but I have learnt a lot and still feel passionate about it. The pioneering spirit of my forebears, looking for new places, new ways and commitments to learning and service has served me well. I do believe I have a lot to offer as a clinician but I would not call myself a great clinician. Where I really excel is in my ability to identify, nurture and learn from what other clinicians have to offer. Both Tania and Patte are great clinicians in their different ways and I greatly appreciate what they have contributed to my life and practice.
Glancing through Johnella Bird’s book 'The Heart's Narrative' my interest was instantly engaged in her writing about respectfulness that she wrote about and the methodology she described for bringing that respectfulness into every conversation. As I attended her workshops and read her work I struggled to get my head around her ideas but realized that it had potential for transforming my practice. As I developed embryonic understanding of her ideas and began to integrate them into my work I noticed a shift. I found the work and the people I worked with more interesting. I felt less weight of apparently insoluble problems. I moved away from feeling responsible for doing an assessment, developing a treatment plan and instituting treatment. I moved more into the position of someone making my knowledge and skills available for people to take up. People seemed to find me a lot more helpful.
Being able to work with Tania Windelborn as she also took up these ideas has accelerated the movement in my practice. I would have loved to have found the energy to do a randomised controlled trial on Johnella's work. I can see how it could be done and would be keen to support anyone who wants to do it. But I don't have the capacity. It was the enthusiasm Tania and I had for the contribution Johnella's ideas made to our work that led to setting up the precursor to this website, called Collaborative Psychiatry.
We had found her work so helpful and we wanted it to be as widely available as possible.
My work with Patte took different pathways. The direction was the same, finding practical effective ways to support people to live their lives in optimal ways according to their values and desires. I have worked with her in writing the book, Finding Hope in the Lived Experience of Psychosis: Reflections on Trauma, Use of Power and Re-visioning Psychiatry.
It seemed very appropriate to include information about The Gift Box, which Patte has developed, on this website. Its technology and practical approach is completely different from Johnella's but it provides another way for us to support people to access their personal knowledge and resources in the service of building the lives they want.
Parata te tangata
Ko Kahutianui te whaea
Ko Mamaru te waka
Ko Maungataniwha te maunga
Ko Kenana te marae
Ko Ngatikahu te iwi
Ko Tania Windelborn taku ingoa
I am blessed to have a home on our whanau whenua where I grew up with my Grandparents who I called Mum & Dad.
My education was as an adult student after having my 3 children, it was not the norm to have a University Education in my whanau, they were all hard workers. My yearning for learning was shaped by my grandmother who attended Queen Victoria school and her sister who was a Registered Nurse. My Grandfather, a hard worker and provider, instilled in me there was a world outside of our home listening to politics, keeping up with the news and sporting events; especially the rugby and cricket.
I have worked as a Registered Nurse in a range of areas in mental health, physical health, hospital, community, disability, end of life and currently general practice. I have taken up a range of learning opportunities, gathered up my colleagues - especially Josephine - and from the people I have served, I have trained in various therapeutic modalities, university courses and gained a lot from every learning experience. I have noticed that I keep coming back to what I have learnt from Johnella.
The metaphor of weaving or raranga in the Maori language pulled me towards Johnella's ways of working. I had memories of my grandmother making kete. She followed customs that I never realised at the time were deeply respectful of the art.
The timing, collection and preparation of the flax had to be correct. Making a kete is a stepwise process requiring patience and perseverance.Kete have their own unique stories and history - where the flax is collected, what prompted the weave, who and what it is for. She worked with joy and, seemingly without effort, skillfully and purposely wove. When watching her I knew it was not a chore. She would often waiata looking happy and relaxed as she was creating.
Johnella Bird’s teaching came at a time when I was questioning my nursing practice and my purpose in the field. Evidence-based practices that I trained in are valuable and helpful. However there were times when I felt stuck and needed more. Her work opened up ways that I felt to be in accord with nursing philosophies - holistically orientated, culturally sensitive, embracing spirituality, gender, power, history - all the while mobilizing people and their personal strengths and their own resources; helping to create some movement towards a sense of agency.
It was refreshing to learn about a way of working that was not prescriptive. The work flows showed me ways to stay present with each person, ask meaningful questions, stay open to the answers; exploring each answer to be able to fully understand their experience. Being open, curious and alert to what is happening in the room, the type of language being used supports working together for what is present and what is possible. I notice that I experience people being more interested and vibrant and myself being energised. Johnella Bird’s therapeutic strategies revive my work and each time I visit her therapeutic strategies, I learn something new.
I live in Raglan, New Zealand, overlooking Mt Karioi. I am mother to three caring, compassionate, adult sons. I have told my story publicly in many contexts, including our recently published book, so I won’t go into too much detail here. What is clear to me is that life is full of uncertainty, and I have no idea what lies round the next curve, twist, or bend in the road. But I fully embrace the notion that we plan, God chuckles, and I trust that the best is yet to come!
My mother, born in Palestine in 1926, grew up as one of the new generation of Jewish children whose families had returned to the ‘Promised Land’ with Zionist ideals. My father, born in England in 1911, was a British policeman working in Palestine, where they met and married. I was born in London in 1951, shortly after they arrived in the UK to start a new life together, along with my two older siblings. Three more brothers came along in due course. Both my parents valued education highly, having left school early, without qualifications. I completed my doctorate in Psychology and later graduated as a medical doctor in 1980. After coming to New Zealand almost 40 years ago, I spent 2 enriching years working at a small rural hospital and outlying GP clinics within a mainly Māori community. I then trained in psychiatry in Auckland, where I practiced for 30 years.
My specialist interest was working with people with so-called ‘treatment resistant psychotic illness’, a term with which I was never enamoured. I always believed it was our medical approach that was resistant. My understanding of psychosis is partly informed by personal lived experience. Along with Josephine, I have published qualitative research based on talking with doctors who, like me, became patients of psychiatrists.
I have also published research describing an effective multimodal approach I developed to support people who experience extreme states. As a result of my research, I created a person-centred, recovery-focused training course for staff at Buchanan Rehabilitation Centre and subsequently co-authored the ‘Re-covery Model’. Following on from this 'The Gift Box' emerged. It is a resource that can be used to help facilitate self-understanding, resilience, and wellbeing for all. This has been successfully field-trialled in the Waikato region. I am now retired from clinical practice and I'm passionate about making 'The Gift Box' available as widely as possible. I would never have got my research published and made this on-going progress with my life's work if it hadn't been for Josephine's persistent encouragement. Thank you, Josephine!
Randal, P and Stanton, J (2022) Finding Hope in the Lived Experience of Psychosis: Reflections on Trauma, Use of Power and Re-visioning Psychiatry. Routledge, London.
Stanton, Josephine (2021) Debate: The role of inpatient units is to support community care. Child Adolesc Ment Health May. 26 (2): 184-185
Stanton, Josephine, Thomas, DR, Jarben, M, MacKay, P (2020) Self-determination theory in acute child and adolescent mental health inpatient care. A qualitative exploratory study. PLOS ONE 15 (10)
Randal, P., Geekie, J., Lambrecht, I., & Taitimu, M. (2018 – second edition; 2008). Dissociation, psychosis, and spirituality: Whose voices are we hearing? In A. Moskowitz, I, Schafer & M. Dorahy (Eds) Psychosis, Trauma and Dissociation: Emerging Perspectives on Severe Psychopathology (pp. 333-345). Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell.
Wright, Tanya; Jowsey, Tanisha; Stanton, Josephine; et al. (2018) Patient experience of a psychiatric Mother Baby Unit. PLOS ONE 13 (5) e0198241
Stanton, Josephine; Lahdenpera, Viktor; Braun, Virginia (2017) Referral to an acute child and adolescent inpatient unit: The experiences and views of community mental health referrers. Qualitative health research., Vol.27(11), p.1664-1674
Stanton, Josephine; Randal, Patte (2016) Developing a psychiatrist-patient relationship when both people are doctors: a qualitative study. BMJ Open 6 (5) e010216
Stanton, J; Drake af Hagelsrum, and Stasiak, K (2015) Access to the internet in an acute child and adolescent mental health inpatient unit Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry 49 (5) 487-488
Stanton, Josephine; Drake af Hagelsrum, Emma; Stasiak, Karolina (2015) Access to the internet in an acute child and adolescent mental health inpatient unit. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry: 49 (5) 487-488
Stanton, Josephine. (2012) More on narratives and conversations. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry. 46 (5) 481
Cadario E, Stanton J, Nicholls P, Crengle S, Wouldes T, Gillard M, et al. (2012) A qualitative investigation of first-episode psychosis in adolescents. Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry. 17 (1):81-102.
Geekie, J; Randal, P; Lampshire, L; Read, J. (2011) Experiencing Psychosis; Personal and Professional Perspectives Routledge: London
Randal P; Chapter 7: Subjective experience of spirituality and psychosis. (2011) In Experiencing Psychosis; Personal and Professional Perspectives. (eds Geekie, J; Randal, P; Lampshire, L; Read, J). Routledge: London pp55-66 eBook
Stanton J; Randal P (2010) Doctors accessing mental-health services: an exploratory study. BMJ Open.; 1 (1):e000017.
Randal, P, Stewart, M.W., Proverbs, D., Lampshire, D., Symes, J., Hamer, H. (2009) “The Re-covery Model” – An integrative developmental stress-vulnerability-strengths approach to mental health. Psychosis: 1, 2:122-133.
Rosen, A; Wilson A; Randal P et al (2009) Psychiatrically Impaired Medical Practitioners: Better Care to Reduce Harm and Life Impact, with Special Reference to Impaired Psychiatrists. Australasian Psychiatry 17 (1); 11-18
Wilson A; Rosen A; Randal P; Pethebridge A et al (2009) Psychiatrically impaired medical practitioners: an overview with special reference to impaired psychiatrists. Australasian Psychiatry 17 (1); 6-10
Josephine M Stanton: (2009) Skills for involving patients in decisions: BJP Online, 24 Jan [Full text] · © 2008 The Royal College of Psychiatrists.
Stanton, JM; Simpson, AIF (2006) The aftermath: aspects of recovery described by perpetrators of maternal filicide committed in the context of severe mental illness. Behavioural Sciences & the Law. 24: 103-12,
Randal P, Argyle N. (2005) “Spiritual Emergency” – A useful explanatory model? Spirituality SIG Publications archive and Newsletter 20. Royal College of Psychiatrists online newsletter.
Stanton, JM; Skipworth, J (2005) Obstacles to helpseeking. Retrospective accounts from perpetrators of intrafamilial homicide. Criminal Behavior & Mental Health, 15: 154-63
Stanton, JM (2005) Talking to families about ADHD
Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. 44(2):111-2 (comment, letter)
Armstrong, L, Randal, P. (2004) Spasmodic Dysphonia, a rare form of tardive dystonia, induced by low-dose risperidone? Australian and NZ Journal of Psychiatry (letter)
Randal, P, Simpson, AIF, Laidlaw T (2003). Can recovery-focussed multimodal psychotherapy facilitate symptom and function improvement in people with treatment-resistant psychotic illness? A comparative study. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry; 37:720-727.
Stanton, JM (2003) Talking to families about ADHD Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 42: 1386
Stanton, JM; Simpson, AIF (2002) Filicide: A review. International Journal of Law and Psychiatry 25: 1-14
Stanton, JM; Simpson, AIF (2001) Filicide Murder misdiagnosed as SIDS: A perpetrator’s perspective. Archives of Disease in Childhood 85 454-9
Stanton, JM; Simpson, AIF (2000) A qualitative study of filicide by mentally ill mothers. Child Abuse and Neglect 24 1451-1460
Simpson, AIF; Stanton, JM (2000) Maternal filicide: A reformulation of factors relevant to risk. Criminal Behaviour and Mental Health 10 138-149
Randal P. (1999) Loving Relationship is at the root of Recovery – Chapter in A Gift of Stories –gathered by Julie Leibrich. University of Otago Press/Mental Health Commission. 137-143
Stanton, JM (1999) Generational transmission of child maltreatment. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. 38 (12) 1469 (letter)
Stanton, JM; Arroll, B (1996) The effect of moderate exercise on mood in mildly hypertensive volunteers: a randomized controlled trial. Journal of Psychosomatic Research. 40 (6): 637-642
Stanton, JM. (1995) Weight gain associated with antipsychotic medication: a review. Schizophrenia Bulletin. 21(3): 463-472
Randal, P. (1995) Divining Psychiatry. Australasian Psychiatry Vol3, No 6. 393-397
Stanton, J. (1993) Australian multicentre moclobomide trial. (letter) Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry: 27:158
Cole, PC (1977) Pulse Diagnosis and the practice of Acupuncture
(D Phil Thesis. Sussex University Library)
Talk That Heals
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