Crisis, Relapse and Contingency Planning

I’m very lucky in that the crisis team manager who is working closely with me at the moment to plan my care (as well as the team as a whole) seems to really ‘get’ me. So, when it came to tackling a ‘Crisis, Relapse and Contingency Plan’, she gave me the bland pro-forma sheet that is normally issued but requested that instead I make it more ‘me’; something more visual, tailor-made and created by me that will actually be used, rather than a basic form just filled out as a matter of protocol and then tossed aside.

I thought for a bit and decided my brain couldn’t manage it at the time. Then, like a naughty schoolchild having left homework to the very last moment, I had some sparks of inspiration last night and created something I’m kind of proud of, which I showed the nurse today (and I even think she was proud, too!).

A plan like this is often created when someone is under mental health services but, having made my own version up, I feel like such a thing could be a valuable part of anyone’s care/self-care if tailored to the individual. If you fancy giving something like this a go, I’ve included some snapshots of the approach I took which anyone is very welcome to use and adapt for themselves! I’ve just included basic examples to demonstrate the ideas. 🙂

What can I do to help myself?
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What I hope to do on another sheet is then to try to work out how to overcome some of these challenges or work out alternatives.

Mapping out my support network
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Warning signs
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Contingency plans
To be developed with your support network, thinking about how they could help, what interventions might be useful etc.

I hope that all makes sense and is of some use to people. Today is the first time that I’ve genuinely believed that I will refer back to and utilise a plan such as this, and I’m very grateful to the team here for allowing me to do my own thing and create this useful tool for me and them to use together. I would really urge any of you struggling with your mental health to create something like this – whether just for your own reference (sort of like a tool to get to know yourself better, or for a slightly more well you to plan for when you’re less able to do so) or in collaboration with professionals (GP, mental health team etc) involved in your care.

I’d also love to hear about/see any of your ideas or tools to help you visualise and tailor-make aspects of your care!

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