WRAP®: Wellness Recovery Action Plan
WRAP is a self-designed plan for staying well and for helping you to feel better when you are not feeling well, to increase personal responsibility, and to improve your quality of life.
The first part of WRAP is developing a personal Wellness Toolbox. This is a list of resources you can use to develop your WRAP. It includes things like contacting friends and supporters, peer counseling, focusing exercises, relaxation and stress reduction exercises, journaling, creative, fun and affirming activity, exercise, diet, light, and getting a good night's sleep.
Section 1 of WRAP is the Daily Maintenance Plan. It includes three parts: a description of yourself when you are well, those Wellness Tools you know you must use every day to maintain your wellness, and a list of things you might need to do on any day.
Section 2 is identifying those events or Triggers that, if they happened, might make you feel worse--like an argument with a friend or getting a big bill. Then, using Wellness Tools, you develop an action plan you can use to get through this difficult time.
Section 3 is identifying Early Warning Signs, those subtle signs that let you know you are beginning to feel worse, like being unable to sleep or feelings of nervousness. Then, again, using your Wellness Toolbox, you develop an action plan for responding to these signs to help you feel better quickly and prevent a possible difficult time.
Section 4 is When Things are Breaking Down. In this section, you list those signs that let you know you are feeling much worse, like you are feeling very sad all the time, or are hearing voices. Again, using your Wellness Toolbox, you develop a powerful action plan that will help you feel better as quickly as possible and prevent an even more difficult time.
Section 5 is a Crisis Plan or Advance Directive. In the Crisis Plan, you identify those signs that let others know they need to take over responsibility for your care and decision making, who you want to take over for you and support you through this time, health care information, a plan for staying at home through this time, things others can do that would help and things they might choose to do that would not be helpful. This kind of proactive advanced planning keeps you in control even when it seems like things are out of control. Click here to download the form
Section 6 is the Post Crisis Plan. You may want to think about this part of the plan in advance and even write some things to do in that time. However, you may want to write most of it as you are beginning to recover from the crisis—when you have a clearer picture of what you need to do for yourself to get well.
Review your plans every day, noting how you feel and doing what you need to do to help yourself get better or to keep yourself well. As you become familiar with your plan, you will find that the review process takes less time and that you will know how to respond without even referring to the book. People who are using these plans regularly and updating them as necessary are finding that they have fewer difficult times, and that when they do have a hard time it is not as bad as it used to be and it doesn’t last as long.
The WRAP approach empowers you to take control of your own health and wellness. Since its development, the system has been shared with hundreds of thousands of people through the Wellness Recovery Action Plan books: WRAP Plus, Winning Against Relapse, the Living WRAP video, the Creating Wellness Video series, Build Your Own WRAP and other online courses, numerous support groups, workshops and seminars, and through this web site.
With WRAP, people who experience mental health challenges no longer feel that they are sentenced to a life of chronic disability that interferes with their ability to work toward and reach their goals. Instead, by using self-help skills and strategies that complement other treatment scenarios, they are achieving levels of wellness, stability, and recovery they always hoped were possible. This recovery information is being networked through trainings across the country by the Copeland Center for Wellness and Recovery and by an ever-growing number of recovery educators through self-help publications, seminars, workshops, presentations, support groups, and the internet.