Beliefs and illness: A model for healing

By Wright, L.M., & Bell, J.M. (2009). Calgary, Alberta, Canada: 4th Floor Press.
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A compassion centered approach to illness suffering for health care professionals and families.

What you believe affects your illness and your relationships. Serious illness and loss often invites suffering in individuals and families that is not adequately addressed by health care providers.

The Illness Beliefs Model highlights the connections between beliefs, illness, and suffering.
Key ideas of the Illness Beliefs Model:

  • Illness is a family affair.
  • Serious illness frequently changes one’s life and relationships forever.
  • Beliefs of the ill person, of family members, and of health care providers intersect to invite suffering or invite healing.
  • Talking about illness suffering can be healing.

Therapeutic conversations can soften suffering and help those who are experiencing serious illness move from despair towards courage, from inadequacy towards strength, and from disconnection towards a re-awakening of love with those who matter most.

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