Wellness Recovery Action Plan

Download a personalized Wellness Recovery Action Plan template - a comprehensive guide for proactive mental health management. Empower your well-being.

By Joshua Napilay on Jul 15, 2024.

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What is a Wellness Recovery Action Plan Template?

A Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) template is a structured tool designed to help individuals develop a personalized plan for managing their mental health and well-being. Created by mental health advocate and author Mary Ellen Copeland, WRAP is widely used as a self-help tool. It is often integrated into mental health treatment and support programs.

The WRAP template typically consists of several key components:

  • Wellness Toolbox: This section encourages individuals to identify and compile a list of strategies and activities that promote their mental health and well-being. It may include coping mechanisms, relaxation techniques, and activities that bring joy and fulfillment.
  • Daily Maintenance Plan: In this part of the template, individuals outline specific actions they can take daily to maintain their mental wellness. This could include routines, habits, and practices contributing to overall well-being.
  • Triggers and Early Warning Signs: Participants identify factors or situations that may act as triggers for their mental health challenges. They also list early warning signs that indicate their mental health may be deteriorating. Recognizing these signs can help individuals proactively prevent a crisis.
  • Crisis Plan: This section outlines a step-by-step plan for dealing with a mental health crisis. It includes details such as emergency contacts, healthcare preferences, and strategies for coping during times of heightened distress.
  • Post-Crisis Plan: Individuals consider and document their preferences for support and self-care after a crisis. This may involve identifying resources, activities, or individuals who can offer assistance and comfort.

The WRAP template is a personalized and collaborative tool that empowers individuals to participate in their mental health recovery actively. It can be adapted to unique needs, preferences, and situations and used in consultation with mental health professionals, friends, and family members.

Wellness Recovery Action Plan Template

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Wellness Recovery Action Plan Example

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How does it work?

Introduction and orientation

Begin by familiarizing yourself with the purpose and structure of the WRAP template. Understand that WRAP is a self-designed plan to support your mental health and well-being.

Gather necessary materials

Collect the printable WRAP template, often available in various formats, including PDF or Word documents. Ensure you have writing materials, as the template will require thoughtful reflection and documentation.

Wellness toolbox

Identify and list activities, strategies, and resources that positively affect your mental health. These could include hobbies, relaxation techniques, or supportive relationships.

Daily maintenance plan

Outline a daily routine that promotes mental wellness. Include activities like exercise, adequate sleep, and mindfulness practices that contribute to your overall well-being.

Triggers and early warning signs

Recognize and document specific triggers that may negatively impact your mental health. Identify early warning signs indicating a decline in mental well-being.

Crisis plan

Develop a step-by-step plan to address a mental health crisis. Include emergency contacts, coping strategies, and preferred interventions during heightened distress.

Post-crisis plan

Outline strategies for self-care and support following a crisis. Identify individuals or resources that can assist in the aftermath of a challenging mental health episode.

Review and update

Periodically review and update your WRAP to reflect changes in your mental health needs, preferences, or support network. Consider revisiting the plan with mental health professionals or trusted individuals to ensure its relevance and effectiveness.

Share with the support system

Share your WRAP with trusted friends, family members, or mental health professionals who can offer support and understanding.

Implement and reflect

Actively implement the strategies outlined in your WRAP regularly. Reflect on your progress and adjust to better align with your evolving mental health journey.

When would you use this template?

The WRAP template is a valuable resource that can be employed in various situations and by different practitioners to support individuals in managing their mental health. Here are scenarios and contexts in which the WRAP template is particularly beneficial:

  • Personal mental health management: Individuals can use the WRAP template as a proactive tool for managing their mental health daily. It provides a structured framework to identify triggers, early warning signs, and coping strategies, fostering a sense of self-awareness and empowerment.
  • Mental health treatment settings: Mental health professionals, including therapists, counselors, and psychiatrists, can incorporate the WRAP template into treatment plans. It is a collaborative tool, allowing practitioners to work with clients to develop personalized strategies for maintaining and improving mental well-being.
  • Support groups and peer-led initiatives: Peer support specialists and leaders of mental health support groups can introduce the WRAP template as a resource for group members. It facilitates a shared understanding of individualized coping mechanisms and encourages mutual support within the community.
  • Crisis intervention and emergency services: Emergency responders and crisis intervention teams can utilize the WRAP template during and after crises. Access to an individual's WRAP can guide responders in providing targeted and supportive interventions based on the person's preferences and strategies outlined in the plan.
  • Workplace mental health programs: Employers and workplace wellness programs can encourage employees to create individual WRAPs as part of a comprehensive mental health initiative. This promotes a culture of well-being, self-care, and open communication about mental health in the workplace.
  • Transitioning from inpatient care: Individuals transitioning from inpatient psychiatric care to community living can use the WRAP template to establish a post-discharge plan. This aids in the continuity of care and helps individuals navigate the challenges associated with the transition.

What do the results mean?

The results of utilizing a free WRAP template can manifest in several meaningful ways, reflecting the effectiveness of the individualized mental health management approach. Here are typical results and their significance:

  • Increased Self-Awareness: Using the WRAP template can increase self-awareness. Identifying triggers, warning signs, and coping strategies enhances understanding of one's mental health needs.
  • Empowerment and Agency: Creating and implementing a WRAP helps individuals feel empowered and in control of their mental health, promoting resilience when facing challenges.
  • Proactive Crisis Management: The WRAP template helps with proactive crisis management, reducing the severity and duration of mental health crises, as individuals are better prepared to implement strategies during challenging times.
  • Improved Communication with Support System: A WRAP improves communication with loved ones and mental health professionals. It helps individuals express their needs, preferences, and strategies for support, enhancing the effectiveness of their support system.
  • Preventive Measures and Stability: The WRAP is a tool for daily routines and activities that promote mental health stability and may reduce the frequency and intensity of mental health challenges.
  • Enhanced Treatment Collaboration: The WRAP framework improves collaboration and decision-making between individuals and mental health professionals.
  • Community Connection and Peer Support: Sharing WRAP with peer groups fosters connection and mutual understanding, encouraging learning from each other's strategies and gaining support during challenging times.
  • Long-Term Resilience: Consistent use of WRAP builds effective coping strategies and self-care practices, promoting long-term resilience and sustained mental well-being.

Research & evidence

The inception of the Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) can be attributed to the pioneering work of Mary Ellen Copeland, a fervent advocate for mental health recovery (Copeland, 2002). Formulated in the late 1980s, WRAP stands as a structured and individualized approach to mental health recovery designed to empower individuals in actively managing their well-being (North Jersey Health Collaborative).

Collaboration was pivotal in shaping the WRAP model, extending beyond Copeland's insights. Actively engaging with individuals who had firsthand experiences with mental health challenges and collaborating with mental health professionals, Copeland refined and validated the WRAP model (Cook et al., 2012).

WRAP's recognition and acceptance have transcended diverse mental health settings. Its integration into treatment plans, support groups, and wellness programs globally underscores its efficacy in promoting recovery and resilience (Canacott et al., 2020).

Emerging research provides substantial support for the positive impact of WRAP on mental health outcomes. Studies reveal heightened self-efficacy, empowerment, and an increased sense of personal responsibility for mental health among individuals who engage with WRAP (Wolfson et al., 2013).

In the evolving mental health research landscape, WRAP stands as a notable and well-regarded resource. Its person-centered and collaborative nature aligns seamlessly with the broader shift in mental health care toward recovery-oriented and strengths-based approaches (Horan, 2016). As individuals navigate their mental health recovery journey, WRAP continues to prove invaluable in promoting comprehensive well-being.

References

Canacott, L., Tickle, A., & Moghaddam, N. (2020). Perceptions of wellness recovery action plan (WRAP) training: a systematic review and meta-synthesis. Mental Health Review Journal, 25(4), 345–366. https://doi.org/10.1108/mhrj-10-2019-0037

Cook, J. Α., Copeland, M. E., Floyd, C. B., Jonikas, J. A., Hamilton, M. M., Razzano, L. A., Carter, T. M., Hudson, W. B., Grey, D. D., & Boyd, S. (2012). A randomized controlled trial of effects of wellness Recovery action planning on depression, anxiety, and recovery. Psychiatric Services, 63(6), 541–547. https://doi.org/10.1176/appi.ps.201100125

Copeland, M. E. (2002). Wellness Recovery Action Plan. Occupational Therapy in Mental Health, 17(3–4), 127–150. https://doi.org/10.1300/j004v17n03_09

Horan, L. (2016, July 1). Individual perspectives on the Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) as an intervention in mental health care. https://aran.library.nuigalway.ie/handle/10379/6380

North Jersey Health Collaborative. (n.d.). North Jersey Health Collaborative : Promising Practices : Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP). Copyright (C) 2023 by North Jersey Health Collaborative. https://www.njhealthmatters.org/promisepractice/index/view?pid=3978

Wolfson, J., MacGregor, A., Reid, S., & Given, L. M. (2013). Experience of Wellness Recovery Action Planning in Self-Help and Mutual Support Groups for People with Lived Experience of Mental Health Difficulties. The Scientific World Journal, 2013, 1–7. https://doi.org/10.1155/2013/180587

How to create a Wellness Recovery Action Plan template?
How to create a Wellness Recovery Action Plan template?

Commonly asked questions

How to create a Wellness Recovery Action Plan template?

To create a Wellness Recovery Action Plan template, identify your wellness toolbox, daily maintenance plan, triggers, early warning signs, crisis plan, and post-crisis plan. Utilize a structured template or app, such as Carepatron, for a user-friendly experience.

When are Wellness Recovery Action Plan Templates used?

Wellness Recovery Action Plan Templates are used proactively for daily mental health management and reactively during challenging times. They guide individuals to navigate their mental health journey, providing strategies for prevention, crisis intervention, and post-crisis support.

How are the Wellness Recovery Action Plan Templates used?

Individuals use the templates to document personalized strategies for maintaining mental well-being. They include activities, coping mechanisms, and crisis interventions. Mental health professionals may also incorporate these plans into treatment, and individuals can share them with support networks for better understanding and assistance.

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