October, 2017

Last week we talked about several different types of coping skills including Distraction, Emotional Awareness, Self-Soothing, Mindfulness, Opposite Action, and Crisis Intervention. 

Good work if you looked into any of these skills or tried any of the examples, you deserve some nice self-care!.. maybe a bubble bath or some cuddles with your pet. If you didn’t try any out yet, that’s totally ok. Today, I am presenting a challenge to you to try and finish within the next 2 weeks. This challenge has been presented to me many times in many different types of treatments and I have to admit that everyone I make one of these, I instantly feel safer. Today, I present to you…the coping box challenge!

I first created a coping box when I was in paediatric psychiatric care. We each took a shoebox and decorated it to our own individuality. I was never one with crafts so I just put some coloured paper and tissue around it with “Coping Box” written in stickers on the top. We were told to put things that were meaningful to us in the box within the next week. We were offered five special categories to help us find what to put in the box and now I’m going to pass it onto you.


  • Shoebox
  • Tissue Paper
  • Sissors
  • Glue
  • Glitter
  • Markers, pencil crayons, or crayons
  • Fake feathers
  • Stickers
  • Any other decorating material you think would be helpful!

How to

– Find an empty box such as a shoebox
– Decorate the box with something calming, serine, and peaceful
– Find one thing for each of the categories
-If writing anything for reminders for the box, write them down and make them pretty! – Meditate with the box and put a good and healthy intention
– Put the box in an accessible place that’s easy to reach when you need it

Categories & Examples

  • Motivation
    Inspirational quotes
    Inspirational pictures or memes
    A notepad and pencil to write inspiring messages
    Reminders of friends, family, or pets such as pictures
  • Health
    Crisis medication (if prescribed)
    Energy bars
  • Crisis Prevention
    Emergency phone numbers
    Emergency routine is written step by step on a piece of paper
  • Self-care
    A list of your favourite self-care routines
    Your favourite teddybear
    Something soft to touch
    Colouring book
  • Self-help
    Squeeze ball
    Emotion Journal
    Meditation sheets
    Love letters from family or friends
    Distraction techniques are written for easy reminder
  • Emergency contacts
    A list of your emergency contacts with their phone numbers & emails
    Local emergency departments, helplines, and safe-houses
  • Life Worth Living reminders
    These are personalized reminders of what you find motivating an inspiring…something that makes your life worth living!
    Music, sports, crafts, video games, etc.

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