Explains what psychosis is, including possible causes and how you can access treatment and support. Includes tips for helping yourself, and guidance for friends and family.

Your stories

My experience of psychosis

Posted on 24/10/2013

Hearing voices with bipolar disorder

Katie, who has bipolar disorder, describes her experience of hearing voices when she is manic or depressed.

Posted on 16/12/2014

Mind podcast - Living with psychosis

Reka describes her three very different episodes of psychosis and why she'd rather have another one than take

Posted on 13/03/2013

How can I help myself?

These suggestions could help you cope with psychosis. You may choose to try them on their own or alongside treatment. This page covers:

Peer support

Peer support brings together people who’ve had similar experiences to support each other. You could access peer support online or try a support group in your local area.

You can find peer support groups for psychosis through:

You can also contact your local Mind to help you find peer support near you. See our pages on peer support and our peer support directory for more information.

Recognise your triggers

It might be helpful to keep a diary recording, for example:

  • life events
  • your mood
  • your diet
  • sleep

You could do this in a notebook or use an app or online tool.

This can help you:

  • understand what triggers your psychosis or makes it worse
  • think about what has been helpful in the past
  • recognise warning signs that tell you when you are becoming unwell

Once you have a better understanding of your triggers, you can try to take steps to avoid them. If you learn to recognise your warning signs, you can take action early to try and prevent your psychosis getting worse.

Family and friends may also be able to help you spot when you are becoming unwell.

Learn to relax

  • Manage your stress. Our pages on managing stress can help you manage pressure and build resilience.
  • Try some relaxation techniques. Relaxation can help you look after your wellbeing when you are feeling stressed, anxious or busy.

I painted regularly - something I hadn’t done for years but felt inspired to do.

Look after yourself

  • Try to get enough sleep. Sleep can give you the energy to cope with difficult feelings and experiences.
  • Think about your diet. Eating regularly and keeping your blood sugar stable can make a difference to your mood and energy levels.
  • Try and take some exercise. Exercise can be really helpful for your mental wellbeing.
  • Doing practical things like gardening, cooking or making things can help you feel more connected to the world around you. Being outside in green space can help you feel more in touch with your surroundings.

I think a routine of structure, quiet and an unpressurised environment combined with medication, was ultimately the key to my recovery.

Create a crisis plan

During a crisis you may not be able to tell people what helps you. When you are feeling well it can be a good idea to talk to someone you trust about what you would like to happen (or not to happen) when you are in crisis.

It might help to create a crisis plan. See our page on crisis plans for more information.

This information was published in August 2016. We will revise it in 2019.

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