Remotivation Therapy: What a Concept?

Activity Professionals are presented with new and old therapeutic modalities on a constant basis. Each therapeutic intervention is designed to enhace the quality of life for the client. Today there are a variety of therapies such as pet therapy, music therapy, aromatherapy and vaildation therapy. Each one is well known and used by activity professionals throughout the nation however, there is an under utilized therapuetic technique which is referred to as remotivation therapy that provides a wonderful opportunity for one to explore.

Remotivation therapy is defined by the National Remotivation Therapy Org. Inc. (N.R.T.O.) as “Remotivation is a small group therapeutic modality innature, desinge to help clients by promoting self-esteem, awareness and socialization.” ( Those who facilitate these groups are referred to as Remotivation therapists. The N.R.T.O. Inc defines a Remotivation therapist as one who uses Remotivation therapy to reach the “unwounded” areas of the patient’s personality to get them to think about reality. This is different from other therapies because it doesn’t focus on the patient’s disabilities. Instead Remotivation therapy focuses on the abilities that the client’s have.

The beauty of Remotivation therapy is that anyone can do this therapeutic intervention. This modality occurs in Long term Care, Assisted Living and Adult Day Care settings which can be provided by Social Workers, nurses, chaplains and volunteers. Our clients deal with an interdisclinary team when it comes to their care. If this technique is used it will enhance the quality of life for the clients.

Remotivation therapy is provided in a one to one or in a small group setting. Considering that we have a diverse set of clients in LTC it benefits those who have dementia, need more sensory stimulation and are independent, also clients who are physically and cognitively able to participate but choose not to or choose to do so. Remotivation therapy is a tool that can reach non responsive individuals. This tool aids others with their resocialization skills. This same technique will assist the client in maintaining or improving his physical and cognitive abilities.

A Remotivation therapy session is designed to create fun. The session consists of five structured steps.

STEP I Climate of Acceptance: the therapist greets each member of the group. The facilitator says something positive to each person.
STEP II The Bridge to the Real World: In this step, the facilitator utilizes bounce questions to lead the group to the topic for the day.
STEP III Sharing the world We Live In: this is where a discussion on the topic is held in the everyday world.
STEP IV An Appreciation of the Work of the World: In this step, a discussion is held on the work aspect of the topic.
STEP V Climate of Appreciation: The facilitator individually thanks the clients for attending his/her session. The next meeting is announced.

The Remotivation therapist creates an environment where the client feels safe. In this environment whatever the client says is accepted by the Remotivation therapist in a non-judgmental manner. Thereby a trusting relationship is established between the client and the Remotivation therapist. The Remotivation therapists accepts and appreciated what the client provides. It could be actively paticipating in the session or reaming silent through out the session. It is the gift of their presence that the Remotivation therapist acknowledges.

Remotivation therapy is a wonderful tool to use for the clients. It is a five step process that deals with the client’s unwounded part of the brain. The clients do not dwell onthe emotional aspect of the topic because it is objective in nature. As the sessions progress one will see the change in the cleint. Today, I utilize Remotivation therapy in all of my programs in my facility. This increases their self-esteem and socialization, which provides the opportunity for the individual to focus on something other than their illness. After a few sessions the clients are more social and talkative. Remotivation therapy is a wonderful tool which Activity professionals would benefit from because it would enhance the quality of life of our clients.

NRTO Policy & Procedure Manual, 1995, p. 3 <

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