Reflection On Occupational Therapy

Upon reflection of the time I have spent studying Occupational Therapy (OT) this year, I realised that the view of occupational therapy that I had developed from the time I had spent job shadowing, although not entirely incorrect, was certainly misguided. Initially my understanding of OT was rudimentary and lacked both insight into what OT could achieve and the importance of occupations to OT. When I consider my view of OT now, it has not only altered, but the profession and its associated possibilities, have taken on a new meaning to me. I have gained knowledge that highlights the ways in which OT can change lives, impact groups, individuals and communities, and allow people to bring meaning to their lives. It is also imperative to note that …show more content…
It was in this chapter that Widing1 highlighted her belief that it is challenging to clearly express and define occupational therapy. This provided the incentive needed to find a definition for OT, or at least something I could say to quell the rather puzzled look that greeted me every time I informed a fellow first year that I was studying OT. Due to this I came to define OT as: ‘the therapeutic use of everyday life activities (occupations) with individuals or groups for the purpose of enhancing or enabling participation in roles, habits, and routines in home, school, workplace, community and other settings’2. I now had a definition, which I believed at the time was all I needed and so I neglected to research and fully understand what these terms meant within an occupational therapy context. It was this failure to place information within an occupational therapy context that left me without a true understanding of OT. This changed during our first PBL task, as lectures and tasks introduced me to OT jargon and their meaning within an OT context. Originally, I understood “occupation” to refer to an individual’s profession, job or work. As a result, I was unable to see the true impact of our occupations. This definition failed to illustrate the scope of influence of our occupations. As the first semester …show more content…
During the first few weeks of my first year, I was unable to cope with the volume of work required of me and participate in sport (field hockey) at a varsity level. I was spending an average of 8-10 hours busy with my education every day, followed by 2-3 hours of either hockey or gym (required by our hockey fitness coach). At the time I understood activities health to refer only to achieving a healthy balance between participation in different areas of occupation (rest and sleep, social participation, work, play, leisure, personal management, survival skills and education). I determined, based on my rather limited knowledge of activities health, that I was activities unhealthy and that the only remedy for my activities health state, would be to stop playing hockey. I had always enjoyed playing hockey, but in pursuit of that ever-elusive perfect balance, I felt I had no other options but to give it up. However, I was saved by the figurative “bell”, or in my case “whistle”, as my PBL group’s research showed that activities health was not exactly what I had determined it to be. Instead of being merely a balance between areas of occupations, it was defined by Molineux7 as an individual’s ability to actively partake in environmentally, financially, culturally and socially regulated activities, which bring both

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