Preparation for professional mental health practice


Personal and professional development planning is effective for the individual to develop proper planning for improvement of the knowledge and capabilities to perform better in the organisational context after assessing the existing skill and abilities of the individuals (Cowin et al., 2019). The study aims to discuss about the professional developmental needs as a nurse in treating the human being with mental illness. Through this paper, it is possible to identify and evaluate the leadership skill, communication technique, decision making skill as well as principle of partnership which are necessary requirements for the health care providers where these skills improve capabilities of the person who are serving the individual with mental illness. In this regard, I have gathered experience by working with Miss T who is suffering from lack of control about her aggression and depression for which she attempted suicide at home many times. I try to acknowledge her actual needs and preferences so that she can control her emotion and overcome her problems to lead a normal life like others. I hereby try to improve my skill and capabilities in order to serve better care and support to Miss T and in this regard, the professional development planning is beneficial for me as it provides me a scope to analyse my skill and abilities and develop proper action plan which would guide me to enhance my performance by gathering more experience and improving my knowledge and understanding.


Enhancing communication technique

In serving the patient with mental illness, it is necessary for the nurses and other health care professionals to improve communication skill as it provides an opportunity to the professionals to acknowledge the actual needs and preferences of the patients and develop appropriate care plan for them by empowering them successfully in the planning. According to Monroe (2019), communication is necessary component that enhance the quality standard of the service provided to the patients with mental illness. Communication can be enhanced verbally or non-verbally. Implementing information and Communication technology in the workplace is necessary for technological upgradation which is beneficial for enhancing communication where all the staff can communicate through the technology and access all the necessary information successfully. Sharing each other’s experience and knowledge is also necessary in the workplace for improving communication and in this regard, the professionals need to arrange general meeting where every staff member can share their views and experience successfully. The group discussion further helps the staff to interact with each other. Interactive behaviour and showing respect, positive attitude and friendly relationship are also necessary for enhancing communication where the staff members can interact with each other positively. Moreover, as stated by Wilson, Woollands and Barrett (2018), personalise email and written conversation over the organisation’s portal is also effective for improving communication skill to serve better care to the patients with mental illness.

In this regard, I try to improve my communication skill at the workplace and also with the patients as communication and positive interaction are useful for building strong relationship with each other. Through building communication, it is possible for me to interact with the patient and acknowledge all the necessary information about the patients including past medical records, reaction of the patients, personal preferences and needs so that I can improve effective care plan according to the patient’s needs and preferences. Enhancing communication can also be possible through tam work where all the team members try o interact with each other and work collaboratively though sharing their experience and knowledge. For improving performance of mine, it is necessary for me to improve communication so that I can interact with my staff and other health care professionals to gain more knowledge and clinical expertise so that I can perform better by serving the patients with effective treatment of mental illness including counselling, medication and rehabilitation technique.

Decision making skill

According to Schmidt and McArthur (2018), decision making skill is another important aspect of nursing where all the professionals need to take active part in the decision-making practice for the patients. It is the responsibility of the nurses and other health care professionals to provide alternative solutions and improve decision making skill for performing better and serve the best quality care and support to the patients with mental illness. In order to develop decision making skill, it is necessary to have problem solving skill where the individual can analyse the existing issue and identify the problems successfully so that it is possible to explore more alternative to improve performance. As opined by Tluczek et al., (2018), the individual also needs to explore new options for mitigating the problems after gathering proper information and data about the context. Hereby, decision making skill is necessary for the nurses and the health care professionals in which they need to have in depth knowledge and information about the nursing field and the clinical knowledge to serve the patients with mental illness. Without in depth knowledge and understanding, the individuals fail to explore new possibilities to mitigate the existing issues. Hereby, proper knowledge and clinical expertise are helpful to gather more information and utilise problem solving skill by exploring different options. Choosing the options for the benefits of the patients and improving the performance of the individual is also necessary where the nurse needs to evaluate the options efficiently and implement the decision successfully. After implementing the decision, it is also necessary to monitor the impacts, strengths and weakness of the decision as well as identify more alternative for better performance (Arnold and Boggs, 2019).

In this regard, I also need to improve my decision-making skill to serve better care ad practice to the patients with mental illness. Through developing decision-making skill, it is possible for the individuals to develop proper decision for the patients with mental illness. For improving the decision-making skill, it is necessary to improve problem solving and critical analysis skill in order to develop news ideas and practice to support the patients who are suffering from mental illness. Hereby, it would be beneficial for me to improve my performance as a nurse and midwifery where I can serve better acre and support the patient with mental illness by proper treatment and care.

Developing Leadership Skill

Developing leadership skill in nursing and midwifery is considered essential for improving the performance of healthcare professionals in serving patients. According to Ellis (2019), strategic thinking, planning, delivery, and people management are crucial for effective leadership. Leaders must manage staff members, motivate them, and foster a culture of transparency and accountability (Frankel & PGCMS, 2019). Teamwork, collaboration, and communication are also vital for successful leadership (Jefferies et al., 2018). Leaders must lead people towards change to achieve organizational success (King et al., 2018).

Principle of Partnership

Partnership working is another critical skill for professional development in nursing and midwifery. Effective organizational culture, collaboration, and cooperation are essential for partnership working (Ordan et al., 2018). Partnership working benefits both professionals and patients by facilitating communication, understanding, and trust (Barnfield, Cross & McCauley, 2018). Partnership with patients helps in understanding their needs and preferences, leading to better care plans and improved outcomes (Stahlke Wall, 2018).

Gibb’s Reflective Model

Gibb’s reflective model, with its six domains, helps individuals reflect on their experiences and knowledge. Description, feelings, evaluation, analysis, conclusion, and action plan guide the reflection process. Here's a reflective analysis:


Through description, it is possible for the individuals to describe own experience and what has been happened during the course work and through this section, it is possible for the individual to share their experience and understanding during the professional work. I have gathered experience as serving the patient with mental illness where I am responsible for taking care of the patient who is suffering from mental illness. I looked after Miss T as she is suffering from depression, stress disorders, eating disorders and attempting suicide. It is very tough job for me to help her to overcome her trauma and live a normal life like others. I was engaged with her since long time and I try to let her feel comfortable with me and build strong relationship with her so that she can rely on me and share her experience with me. Without acknowledging her behaviour, personality and personal preferences as well as identifying the past experience, I cannot diagnose the traumatic situation that she is going through. I try to maintain confidentiality at working ethically and aim at maintaining the Code of Professional Conduct where I try to implement general data protection Act 2018 as well as provide safety to the patient so that the personal information of the patient can be kept safely. I try to engage her in different activities in the society as well as enhance conversation and positive interaction with her so that I can develop friendly relationship with her which would be beneficial for me to support her and help her to get rod off her situation. Additionally, her mother is also cooperating, and she also want me to stay with her daughter in future so that the mental illness including eating disorder, suicidal tendency and stress disorder can be mitigated through counselling, improving mutual understanding, medication and others.


I am felt that, I was cooperative and trying to cooperate with Miss T and also with her mother so that I can build a string relationship with them for serving better care and supporting through the treatment and diagnosis so that they can feel safe to rely on me and I also can empower them in developing an appropriate care plan for the patient. In this regard, I have felt that, I have lack of knowledge and in depth understanding in treating the patient with mental illness. Through I was cooperative and collaborative with them, but there needs proper expertise and clinical experience to serve better care and support the lady. In addition to this, I also lack to have active listening skill and compassion as these are not strong. I also feel that, there is lack of communication and professional peach at that place where I need to handle the situation more professionally. Hereby, due to lack of knowledge and understanding, I felt that, she has trust problem and she was not cooperative with me for therapeutic communication.


As per my experience, it has been good that I have built strong relationship with her mother and try to let them trust me for future in discussing their experience. I try to maintain confidentiality as well as transparency and accountability for treating the patient and her family members professionally. However, there is lack of knowledge and clinical expertise for which I fail to act professionally. I also fail to communicate with Miss T as she felt scared and she was not willing to cooperate and share her experience and he reason of such traumatic behaviour.


As per my understanding, better communication and cooperation make the situation more effective where compassionate and active listening skill need to be strong. Moreover, enhancing therapeutic communication, building trust and loyalty with the patient and develop friendly atmosphere would be beneficial for the patient to be treated well and be cooperative during the treatment session for overcoming her problem.


In this context, need to develop my understanding and professional skill so that I can provide better acre and quality standard of treatment to support her with proper treatment and medication as well as therapeutic communication and counselling. She needs proper support and treatment which could be beneficial for her to mitigate the stress disorders, eating disorders and suicidal tendency. In addition to these, I also need to improve my verbal communication skill for building string relationship with her and crate a friendly environment where she can feel safe and trust me during the therapeutic communication.

Action Plan:

It is necessary for me to develop action plan for enhancing my professional skill and capabilities in near future so that I can serve the patient with mental illness more efficiently. In this regard, I try to improve my verbal communication skill by being more extrovert and expressing my understanding with the patients. I also need to improve active listening skill and compassion for empowering the patient and let them feel special to develop care plan for them. I also need to attend more training and development program for improving my knowledge and skill to enhance therapeutic communication and deliver quality acre and support the patient.


It can be concluded that, communication skill is necessary for building string relationship with other nurses and patients as well and develop working in partnership practice in the workplace for enhancing cooperation and collaboration where all the members including the patients can communicate and contribute in developing effective care plan for their difficulties of mental illness and enhancing their wellbeing. Through reflective assessment, I have felt that, I need to improve my knowledge and clinical skill as well as enhance decision making and communication skill for treating the patient with care and treatment and enhancing therapeutic communication so that the issue of mental illness can be mitigated.

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Reference List

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  • Wilson, B., Woollands, A. and Barrett, D., 2018. Care Planning: A Guide for Nurses. London: Routledge.

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