Why Do I Need a Crisis Plan?
You need a crisis plan. And I am not just saying this so that you’ll download our free crisis plan guidebook. I am saying this as a friend, that a crisis plan could save your life, your time, and your money.
3 Reasons Why You NEED to Create Your Own Crisis Plan
It helps others if you are ever in crisis
Here’s the thing- when you’re feeling overwhelmed mentally, emotionally, physically, you are going to have a hard time giving people the necessary information to help you.
Let me give you an example. I once knew a woman who went into crisis when her father died. She packed her bag, got in the car, drove to see her mom and help with funeral arrangements. When she got to her family, she could barely remember where she was, who she was, and why she was there. When her family started helping her unpack her bag, they noticed that she had only packed a couple of mismatched socks, some cans of beans, and toilet paper. It took her a few days to come around, and she was exhausted, sad, and finally able to process what happened. They laugh about the story now, but what they didn’t know was that this was a sign of a crisis. It was good that she was with her family at the time! However, if she had a crisis plan, her family might have known what to do and helped her more effectively. Not only that, but what if she was alone with only acquaintances or emergency responders to help her? Their lack of personal knowledge about her would have made it difficult to give her the personalized care she needs.
Your personalized crisis plan gives others your personal information, as well as what a crisis might look like for you, who they can contact for you, and what facilities you would prefer to get care from. Your future self will be thanking your past self when it comes down to a crisis.
It helps YOU if you’re in crisis
When something really devastating happens, it is NOT uncommon for you to do things that aren’t typical for you. You might feel so stuck and so lost that you aren’t sure what to do or where to go. Having a crisis plan and placing it in a safe, consistent place will be a failsafe when all else goes wrong.
Think of it this way, imagine that you lose your job, and you are devastated. You feel panicked about what to do if you aren’t able to provide for yourself (or your family if that’s the case). You might start to feel such deep depressive symptoms that you aren’t able to remember your friends names and numbers (happens more often than you’d think!) When you’ve created a crisis plan, you have likely let your friends and family know that you have put them down as your contacts and they can feel prepared to help you when you call on them in a time like this. It will give you the necessary information that might be too hard to process when you’re in crisis.
It could prevent self-harm, a trip to the hospital, or expensive 911 calls
The average cost of a ride in an ambulance is $2,000 (if you have insurance, it would be much lower, about $350). The average cost of a night’s stay in the hospital is also about $2,000. If you or a loved one is in such a crisis that self-harm seems possible but not imminent, but no one knows how to help you, it’s likely that they will call 911.
While 911 is a valuable resource to our society, it can be avoided (and saved for very serious emergencies) when others around you know how to help you. Not only that, but your recovery from a crisis will be quicker and the cost could be almost nothing (possibly just a couple of missed days of work).
Just do it.
No really, just take 10 minutes today to print out our free template and write down who you want to help you when you’re in crisis and what you need from others. Thinking ahead and being prepared will also be a very efficient way to catch yourself early before you even get to a point of true crisis. If you have any questions or need any help, feel free to comment below or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
If you or a family member are in danger of serious self harm, harming others, or causing serious property damage, don’t hesitate to go to your nearest emergency room or call 911. A crisis plan should help you avoid this situation altogether, but getting medical help when you or someone you know is in imminent danger is best.
As always, the National Suicide Prevention Helpline is a great resource for help and information for specific situations 1-800-273-8255 (memorize this number, or put it in your phone!)
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Our founder, April Peck, is also a trained instructor for QPR. She is offering LIVE (but virtual) QPR trainings every 5th Friday at 1 pm Pacific / 4 pm Eastern. These 90 minute trainings cannot be recorded so be sure you can attend when you select your meeting time. A confirmation email with login instructions will be sent 1 week prior to your selected attendance date.