Getting Through Together / Suicide Prevention / Personal safety plan

This personal safety plan allows you to keep a record of the things you can do and the people you can contact to keep yourself safe if you are feeling really bad.

It’s important to remember that this too will pass and you deserve help and support to get through.

“Deep down you will know how to help yourself.”
Michalea, 34

My own survival plan

It can help to make your own plan for what to do when things feel really bad.

Try to find a time when you’re feeling calm to make your plan. You could ask someone you trust to help you write it.

Write your own answers to each question. Be really honest with yourself about what you need and what works for you. There are some examples on each page to help you think of different ideas.

For more information, check out our Having suicidal thoughts resource: https://www.mentalhealth.org.nz/get-help/getting-through-together/suicide-prevention/having-suicidal-thoughts/

  • Deliberately withdrawing and avoiding contact from whānau and friends
  • Feeling like a burden
  • Feeling like I can't cope
  • Losing interest in things I usually enjoy
  • Drinking to cope with difficult thoughts and feelings
  • Getting into arguments
  • Feeling like I don't deserve help
  • Sleeping a lot more than usual, or not getting enough sleep

How do my thoughts, moods or behaviours change when things get really bad?

What are my warning signs that tell me I should take action?

  • My religion or spirituality
  • My pets
  • My tamariki/children or mokopuna/ grandchildren
  • Things I haven't done yet, that I'm looking forward to
  • My job or volunteer work
  • Something I believe in
  • Someone I love
  • My whānau or friends

When I’m feeling bad, what are the things I can remember that are worth living for?

  • Get rid of things I might use to hurt myself – throw them away, lock them up or give them to someone.
  • Connect with someone who makes me feel safe – this could be calling a friend, whānau member or helpline counsellor or asking someone to stay with you.

How can I keep myself safe?

  • Sing a waiata
  • Say a karakia/ prayer
  • Write down how I am feeling
  • Play with a pet
  • Do some exercise
  • Practice breathing exercises or meditation
  • Have a coffee or cup of tea
  • Watch a movie
  • Do some gardening
  • Take a shower or bath
  • Treat myself to a small thing I usually enjoy
  • Go for a walk
  • Listen to music that makes me feel good

How can I distract myself from these thoughts?

What are some things I’ll be able to do even when I’m feeling really low?

  • Call, txt or message a friend
  • Spend time with the people I trust
  • Make contact with people who can help such as my GP, counsellor or a helpline service I trust.

Who can I connect with that will help lift my mood?

Make a list of supportive people you can talk to and their contact details.

If you’re working with a doctor, counsellor or peer support worker, write their details down too.

If you don’t know who you can talk to, try phoning a helpline or texting a text counselling service

The following services offer free support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They can also connect you to other places and people that can help.

Need to talk?
Free call or text 1737 to talk to a trained counsellor, any time

Lifeline
0800 543 354 for counselling and support or free text 4357 for counselling and support

Samaritans
0800 726 666 for someone who will listen

Depression Helpline
0800 111 757 or free text 4202 to talk to a trained counsellor

Youthline
0800 376 633, free text 234 or email talk@youthline.co.nz
For youth, whānau and friends

You’ll find other helpful information at www.mentalhealth.org.nz/get-help