The Idea: share numbers of the people who support you with all of the other people who support you. This will make it easier for them to communicate in a difficult situation or crisis moments. This is especially helpful for people who are supporting and are not physically present, so that they can contact someone who is physically present.
Step one: write down the names and numbers of the people who are close to you, this could be friends, people you live with and see regularly, neighbours you trust etc and put them in one place, you could write them on a google doc/email or get people to save them on their phones.
Step two: distribute these numbers between all of the people's numbers you have written down.
The Idea: Write down a list of the people in your life then organise them into categories, thinking about who you feel safe with and close to and supported by. Think about who you would like to bring closer into the support circle.
Step one: Write down a list of people that are in your life, community, who you know, like, hang out with etc.
Step two: organise them in a diagram around you.
Central ring: you
Orange support ring: your closest friends, partner/s, family members, where a lot of trust already exists.
Blue ring: people who are friends, you might hang out with them but there might be some trust lacking and you might not be able to or feel comfortable asking them for support or trust that you will be supported by them.
Outer ring: people in your community and people who are less close to you.
Professional support: therapist, counsellor, body worker, doctor etc. You can put this in a different section but include them on your diagram.
Step three: think carefully about who you would like to be where in relation to you. Draw arrows to indicate who you want to focus your energy on and where you would ideally like people to be.
People you might like to bring closer in might be someone you like but don’t know so well, or someone you can imagine being very supportive.
People you may want to allow to move further away may be people you hang out with a lot where there is less trust that they will be able to support you, or they are actively harming you in some way.
Step four: the people who now sit in the orange circle are the people you want to be inviting into any support groups you create. Ideally you want to have at least 6 people in that circle, and this will grow over time. Asking people for support is vulnerable and will build trust between you.
The Idea: mapping all of the things we find supportive in one place. Doing this will help us get to have an understanding of all of the things we find supportive, and will create something we can reach out for when we need some support.
Step one: write down everything and anything you can think of that supports you.
Step two: collate and order the ideas into categories. It can be good to do this based around needs, when we are not feeling good we can ask ourselves what we are needing and then go to a list under that need, these are strategies that might help.
Here is a list of needs, you can pick a few that might be most helpful.
Needs list by Sarah Peyton
Highlighted on the map on the right: Rest strategies
Meditating, napping, going to bed early, having a lie in, watching TV, reading fiction, having a bath, cuddling, being alone, being silent, being in nature, visualisations.
Here is an example of a support map:
Care strategies: warmth meditation, speak to friend, bath, walking outside, going to the sea
Nourishment strategies: asking someone to cook for you or cooking, going to buy some nice food, sleeping outside, making a tincture or remedy or picking herbal plants, herbal tea, tidying my room, massage
Expression strategies: dancing, shouting, drawing, writing, making things for myself or others, talking to people, check ins, playing,
Safety strategies: being around someone we trust, being at home/in bed (if home feels safe), going outside with someone we trust, having clear boundaries, imagining safety around where we are / safe space meditation
Purpose strategies: making things, foraging, being outside, learning plants, drawing, photographing, preserving, learning neuroscience, retreats, making gifts, going away, sleeping out, getting up and getting dressed.
The Idea: to create a written/ visual/ recorded document with supportive things and processes that will support you when you are struggling or in crisis. This will support people to know how you like to be supported, and will help them to support you both with more ease and knowing that what they are doing is helpful.
Step one: remember, record and research supportive processes that people could go through with you.
Step two: create an easily accessible place where these supportive processes live. Make them clear and easy to use.
Step three: share this with people in your support circle.
Here is my live support document as an example: