The WRAP Plan: Wellness Toolbox
I provided an overview of a very effective wellness plan called The WRAP Plan (Wellness Recovery Action Plan= WRAP) in a previous article. What I would like to share today is the very first part of the WRAP plan. As I cover each of the parts of this plan, I would like to remind everyone that you don’t need to complete each part. This plan is for you…it’s YOURS. So you can decide how you would like to use it. I would also like to remind folks that this isn’t just for psychological struggles but for any illness or problem. Without further ado…THE WELLNESS TOOLBOX.
Assembling the toolbox
Developing a Wellness Toolbox is simply providing a structure for all of those things that you do or don’t do to help yourself feel better. It can provide reminders and resources that you can call upon when in distress. The first question that you are asked to consider is from your perspective what things work for you when trying to manage your illness? We probably all know exactly how to answer this question. If you don’t, that’s completely ok, but this is an important question to consider. I know that music, exercise and therapy support my wellness. My family and friends support my wellness. My diet SUPPORTS MY WELLNESS. Your turn!
The second of the three steps to developing a Wellness toolbox is to ask yourself what types of things carry a sense of meaning for you? What inspires you and reminds you of your value system and sense of self? Generally speaking, this question’s purpose is to help you gain strength by reminding you who you are in the grand scheme of things. When we can see through all of the pain and understand what it is that gives you purpose, you begin to feel stronger. With no purpose, inspiration or values, we tend to feel like an empty shell. This is bad for a healthy person and far worse for someone who is suffering with a debilitating illness. By answering these questions in WRAP workbook or simple journal we can begin to see the larger picture of the things that will keep us above water.
The final step is to think about things that you would like to try to see if they would help improve your overall wellness. These are things that you have not tried before for whatever reason. Very often, the things on this list are things that we have some apprehension about trying. By having these chances for change within our Wellness Toolbox, they serve as a constant reminder of what we might like to take a chance on. My WRAP Plan has quit smoking, quit coffee and join a soccer or softball team in this section. It also has pray more often and a number of other things that I believe would help me manage my life and my illness more effectively. Please consider finding a WRAP Plan workbook online (you can generally find them for free). We will discuss the next section, ‘The Daily Maintenance’ plan, in a future article.
Do you have a good understanding of what triggers your flares?