Coping Cards

Positive Affirmations have taken the internet by storm. Chances are you’ve seen them on Pinterest paired with a picture of beautiful scenery in the background. You might be wondering, though, do these positive affirmations work?

Positive Affirmations have the power to help combat negative thoughts. However, the results are mixed. Some may not find broad positive affirmations helpful as they may seem like they don’t fit their situation.

Coping Cards with more personalized statements can be a practical alternative when things get tough.

What are Coping Cards?

Coping Cards are just what they sound like; cards with helpful, self-esteem-boosting statements we can say when feeling anxious or sad. The neat thing about Coping Cards is that you can make unique ones at home.

 All you need are:

  • Notecards, cards, or post-it notes
  • Writing tools (pens, pencils, markers, etc., get creative!)

How to make Coping Cards:

  • Write in your own words.
    • Writing it in your own words will make it easier to remember.
  • Make it personal.
    • Tailor it to what is most relevant to your experience.
  • Keep it realistic.
    • It isn’t realistic to never make a mistake or feel anxious. The pressure to be perfect can generate more anxiety or sadness.
    • Some examples of more realistic coping statements are: “It’s okay to be upset” and “Making a mistake doesn’t make me a bad person.”
  • Keep it present.
    • Write them for the present and use them in the here and now!
  • Make it positive.
    • Write something that is uplifting or practices compassion toward yourself. If it’s hard to think of something, try writing kind, brief statements that you would say to a friend.
      • An example could be: “I deserve to feel okay right now.”
  • Be creative!
    • Don’t be afraid to decorate your coping cards! 

Some examples of coping statements are:

  • I accept myself as I am.
  • I am doing my best.
  • I’ve survived this before, and I’ll survive this too.
  • I can take as small a step forward as I choose.
  • I am valuable because I am human, alive, and unique.
  • I am worthy of love.

Coping Cards aren’t meant to be a magical fix, but they can be a helpful reminder when feeling overwhelmed or down.

Have you ever made coping cards? If so, what was your experience like? What are some things that help boost your self-esteem?

Moderator ★

Hi! The moderator is a research team member with a background in behavioral health. We're here to help answer your questions and stimulate some great conversation! We don't provide therapy and are not available 24-7 so please if you are in crisis, go to our crisis page: We look forward to talking to you!

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