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What is a Wellness Recovery Action Plan® (WRAP®) and how do I use it?

The Wellness Recovery Action Plan®, or WRAP®, is an evidence based practice that is used world-wide by people who are dealing with mental health challenges as well as medical conditions. Diabetes, weight gain, pain management, addictions, smoking, and trauma are just some of the many life challenges that can benefit from WRAP. WRAP can also be used as a framework to guide relationships in peer support, recovery groups, agencies, and organizations.

WRAP is being used in schools, prisons, hospitals, and veterans’ facilities. It is used with people of all ages who want to attain the highest possible level of wellness. It was originally developed by a group of people who lived with mental health difficulties and were searching for ways to resolve their wellness issues. WRAP was their answer, and it can be used by anyone looking to develop a plan to manage a path to wellness.

WRAP involves listing your personal resources, your Wellness Tools, and then using those resources to develop an Action Plan to use in specific situations which you determine. WRAP is adaptable for any situation and can include a Crisis Plan or Advance Directive.

WRAP is for Life! – It is for everyone, anytime, and for any of life's challenges.

 WRAP Overview                              

[video with Mary Ellen Copeland]      Click here to find out more about getting started with WRAP®

Get the WRAP Workbook



WRAP for People with Developmental Distinctions

WRAP for People with Developmental Distinctions is a very special book. It was inspired by, and written in close consultation with a group of phenomenal people-people who live with developmental distinctions every day. Rachel, Nikki, Sue and Christopher supplied examples from their own WRAPs and their own lives, in the hope that others would benefit. The feedback we are getting shows us that is happening.
This book reinforces my observations from when WRAP was first developed back in 1997--WRAP is for everyone. Anyone who wants to develop their own WRAP and use it as their guide to daily living can do it. And now, almost twenty years later, we have thousands of WRAP group facilitators all over the world who can facilitate WRAP groups and adapt WRAP so that it is easily accessible to anyone. In the back of this book is a section that includes many, many ideas for making WRAP groups easily accessible, interesting, fun, and useful.

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Having Trouble Sleeping?

There seems to be an epidemic of insomnia in our society. Do you have any of the following sleep problems?

  • You sleep less than eight hours per night
  • You sometimes don’t bother getting up in the morning
  • You awaken often during the night
  • You often have a hard time getting back to sleep if you wake up in the night
  • You often have nights when you sleep very little or don’t sleep at all

Using your Wellness Recovery Action Plan to address your sleep problems will not only help with a restful night, but it will carry over into improved performance during your day.
Following are examples of sleep-related Wellness Tools that you may want to try.  These are only examples, not recommendations.  Adjust them to meet your needs and what you know works for you. 

  • Go to bed at the same time every night and get up at the same time every morning
  • Avoid naps that are longer than twenty minutes
  • Limit intake of caffeine to no more than 2 cups of coffee a day and avoid caffeinated soda

 Read More


Get WRAP for Life


Highly Recommended WRAP Course

I have taken the course Implementing Mental Health Evidence-Based Practices: The Case of Wellness Recovery Action Planning (WRAP) and I recommend it highly to anyone who is implementing, has implemented or is considering implementing a WRAP program or any other evidence-based program, and for Advanced Level WRAP Facilitators who might find themselves advocating for WRAP programs, helping to get the program started and insuring its continuance.  

The course gives detailed instructions for implementation that, if followed, insure success. The beginning of the course is more generic, giving the basics of successful implementation, and toward the end it focuses almost exclusively on WRAP. This course would have been of great value to me over the years in my efforts to disseminate WRAP. It would have helped me avoid missteps, those times when I had to back up and take a different track or change the focus of my efforts. Although WRAP has done very well, as I took the course I thought about different ways we could have done things, and how that might have enhanced and eased the process.

This course is eligible for Continuing Education credit for those who need it. At a cost of $5.00, it is the best bargain around. You can access it at http://www.cmhsrp.uic.edu/health/ebp-wrap-course.asp.


Mary Ellen Copeland and her staff cannot address personal mental health problems and issues. We care very much about your concerns but we must focus our efforts on education and resource development. For more information on how to get help for yourself or the people you are supporting, please use the resources on this website.

© 1995-2014 Mary Ellen Copeland, PhD All Rights Reserved