Friday, December 26, 2008

Safety Plan

The greatest thing that I learned up at UNI (the hospital that I was in) was to have a safety plan. I had never heard of such a thing but now that I know what it is I believe EVERYONE should have one regardless if they suffer from cronic depression/anxiety or whatever! Everyone gets frustrated at times and a little down too. Here's how a safety plan works. On a piece of paper list your warning signs (these are signs that something might happen like a breakdown). Then list your coping skills (anything that you like to do that will relieve the stresses), then list your contacts (people that you can call if you are in crisis mode and your coping skills haven't worked to calm you down...911 should be on there too!!)

I told the Doctor that I was going to make my safety plan all scrapbooky (is that really a word?). He thought that was a great idea because then it became MINE! I've use my safey plan almost everyday. I've become better aware of my warning signs.

Here's a sampling of some things on my safety plan.

Warning sins: being irritable, WANTING to eat when I'm not hungry, wanting to be alone (ALL the time), not wanting to get out of bed, yelling, crying, etc...
Coping skills: take Charlie for a walk, read a book, play piano, sing, take a drive, color or paint, sew more aprons, scrapbook, organize, lay down in bed, etc...
Contacts: I have listed several, close family members and friends. I also have a crisis line on there and if all else fails 911.

Go and make yours!! You won't be sorry you did!


  1. What a good idea, I know I need one. Been really struggling. It's good to read your blog, I don't feel so alone in what I'm going through.

  2. Thank you for posting this blog.. The idea of a safty plan.. and acknowledgeing signs & symptons of me going in to depression... This has already helped me this weekend.. When I didn't want to get out of bed this morning. I know this sounds silly but I didn't get out of bed until 12:30pm.. I had to talk my self in to doing it. I had read this blog the night before yesturday. And I had reconized the sympton of me staying in my bed all day as one of my sysmpton to depression. So now I am putting together a saftey plan to help me when this happens again. Thanks Tami for sharing your honest and heart felt experiences with others.. It is already helping me so much... I knew you were my guardian angel & always will be. Thank you. Heidi

  3. Since I work in the Mental Health Field, I thought I would share a resource that we use with our clients called Wellness Recovery Action Plan which was created by Mary Ellen Copeland. You can order a copy of the book or now she has an online version. Here is a link to her website . This is an extremely useful tool that can be used by just about everyone. Good luck with you recovery.