Mental health services need to change radically to focus on recovery. They need to demonstrate success in helping service users to get their lives back and giving service users the chance to make their own decisions about how they live their lives. Recovery turns mental health services' priorities on their heads. Traditional services wait until a person's illness is cured before helping them to get their life back. Recovery-focused services aim from day one to help people to build a life for themselves. The medical care they give is in support of that bigger purpose. This paper looks at the principles of recovery, the skills required and obstacles to implementing recovery-orientated practice.