Postpartum Depression Action Plan

Postpartum Depression Action Plan Family Doctor Logo

Patient __________________________
Physician/NP/PA __________________

Clinic ____________________________

Phone Number ____________________

Choose one area and add other areas as you begin to feel better.

1. Stay active.

Make time every day to do some physical activity, such as walking for 10 to 20 minutes or dancing to a favorite song.

Every day during the next week I will spend at least ______ minutes doing ___________________________ .

2. Do something that you think is fun each day.

Even though you may need to work a little more at having fun, try doing something that has always been fun, such as a hobby, listening to music or watching a favorite TV show.

Every day during the next week I will spend at least ______ minutes doing ___________________________ .

3. Spend time with people who help or support you.

It is easy to avoid people when you are feeling down, but you should not be alone all the time. Spend some time talking to or doing activities with people. Try to talk to them about how you feel. But know that it’s okay if you can’t talk about it your feelings at first, too.

During the week I will make contact for at least ______ minutes with ______________________ (name), doing or talking about ______________________ .

4. Relaxing.

For many people who have depression, it is hard to stop feeling sad or having unhappy thoughts. Learning to relax can help. Try taking slow deep breaths, saying comforting things quietly to yourself or taking a warm bath.

Every day during the next week I will practice relaxing at least ____ times for at least ____ minutes each time.

5. Set simple goals.

Do not expect too much too soon. Set simple goals for yourself, such as making time to read a few pages of a magazine or fix a cup of tea or cocoa. Delay big decisions until you are feeling better. Give yourself credit for each thing you do. Break work into small steps.

What I want to do is _______________________________________


Step 1 _________________________________________________________

Step 2 __________________________________________________________

How likely are you to do the above things during the next week?

  • Very likely
  • Maybe
  • Unsure
  • Not very likely

PDF Version

Download a PDF version of this Action Plan. (PDF file: 1 page/126 KB)

Adapted with permission from Ted Amann, RNC.