Compassion Behavioral Health / Resources / Articles / Developing Coping Skills for Schizophrenia
CBH Staff

Developing Coping Skills for Schizophrenia

coping skills for schizophrenia

If you are living with schizophrenia, experiencing symptoms may feel debilitating or isolating. Finding strategies to cope can seem like an uphill battle if you do not know where to start. 

Today, we are going to cover some key coping strategies you can consider incorporating into your treatment journey. You do not have to feel alone as you manage your symptoms. 

Invite Others Into Your Treatment Journey 

You do not have to live with symptoms of schizophrenia alone. A key coping skill to consider is inviting those you trust into your journey with you. If you start to exhibit symptoms and are unable to identify them yourself, someone that you trust can help you remain aware of them. 

This can feel like an anxiety-inducing step in your treatment. Are there people you feel you should tell about your condition but are worried about stigmas or their reaction to the news? Use your best judgment and tell those who you think should know that you trust to handle the information. 

If you live with other people or have family members that you are close to, consider starting with these individuals. They are individuals that will be interacting with you on a regular basis. You may also want to disclose your schizophrenia diagnosis to medical professionals, a therapist that you see, and coworkers that you may consider trustworthy. 

There is no single “right” or “wrong” standard for deciding who to share your journey with. Practice discernment and communicate this information to whom you are most comfortable with. 

Stay Consistent with Your Treatment Plan 

If you are pursuing a treatment plan with a medical professional to manage schizophrenia symptoms, remain committed to following it. Make it a priority to honor your doctor appointments, therapy sessions, and medication schedules. 

Find Support Amongst Peers

You may find that you want to connect with others who share a similar experience with schizophrenia. Look for a support group in your area that offers meetings for individuals who also have schizophrenia. This can help you feel like you are not alone in your journey and learn coping strategies from others who have had to manage their own symptoms. 

Prioritize Your Health 

Take time to care for yourself physically as well as mentally. Simple ways to accomplish this can include: 

  • Brushing your teeth and bathing daily 
  • Keeping your home clean 
  • Eat plenty of fresh produce, lean meats, and healthy snacks
  • Engage in physical exercise multiple times per week 
  • Sleeping for 7-8 hours each night 

Adapt Your Lifestyle to Your Journey 

Make lifestyle changes and decisions that benefit your treatment journey. For example, creating a budget or using ridesharing and public transportation can help you protect yourself financially and physically. Because schizophrenia can cause some individuals to lose contact with reality, activities like driving could place one’s safety at risk in the event of a severe episode. 

Do Not Base Your Identity in Living with Schizophrenia 

A mental health diagnosis is a part of your life, but it is not your entire life. You are a person living with schizophrenia, not a schizophrenic. There are many other great qualities about you that more accurately illustrate the person you are. 

What traits, interests, and passions more closely define you? Take a moment and write down these aspects of your life. You will find that there are many other great qualities about you that extend far beyond a medical condition. 

Do Not Shame Yourself for Experiencing Symptoms

Though medication and psychotherapy can help a person with schizophrenia lessen or eliminate their symptoms, there may be times when symptoms do present themselves or an episode occurs. If this happens, do not feel ashamed. Instead, use these experiences as valuable insight to share with those who are on your treatment journey with you. 

As an example, if you do notice breakthrough symptoms despite following a treatment plan, this could indicate that an adjustment to the plan is needed. You can communicate this information to your doctor who may be able to help determine if new approaches or modifications to your medication are necessary. 

Reach Out for Help Today 

If you are looking to develop coping skills to manage symptoms of schizophrenia, you do not have to do this alone. At Compassion Behavioral Health, our team of doctors and licensed psychotherapists help treat schizophrenia in our community in beautiful South Florida. To learn more about how we can assist you in your treatment journey, please call us at (844) 503-0126 or contact us online