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Wellbeing Wednesday | Suicidal warning signs and coping strategies

Wellbeing Wednesday | Suicidal warning signs and coping strategies

6 September 2023
Wellbeing Wednesday | Suicide: warning signs and coping strategies

Some suicides occur without any obvious warning, but usually there are signs. It’s important to understand what the warning signs are and look out for them.

Suicidal warning signs | Warning signs are different for each person.

You’ll probably notice a range of signs rather than just one or two.

Below we explain common suicidal warning signs:


Changes in relationships

withdrawing from other people

feeling like you’re a burden

feeling isolated or lonely

fighting with people


Emotional changes - feeling

depressed or hopeless

anxious or stressed


worthless or alone


Routine Changes

struggling to maintain a routine

poor or disrupted sleep

changes in eating patterns or rapid weight changes


Changes to thinking

finding it hard to focus or concentrate

stuck on negative thoughts about yourself and the future

trauma flashbacks


Behaviour Changes

recklessness and aggression

giving away sentimental or expensive possessions

self-harmingincreased alcohol, drug or other substance use


Thinking about suicide

increased thoughts of suicide

planning or thinking about suicide

Coping strategies | Suicidal thoughts come and go.

Distracting yourself, being in the company of others or doing a positive activity that makes you feel good can help you manage until the suicidal urges subside.

If you notice suicidal warning signs appear, there are coping strategies you can use which have worked for others.


Connecting with others

be around other people

text or call friends or family

use online peer support forums

call helplines or use helpline webchats


Changing your surroundings

go outside into nature - visit a park, garden or your own backyard

visit somewhere you can be around other people - like a cafe or shopping centre


Physical and sensory activities

use sensory items such as touching a soft blanket or lighting a scented candle

get active - walk, run cycle, swim, yoga etc.


Creative expression

paint or draw

dance or make music

get constructive - for example woodwork or model-making

write a story or an entry in your journal


Occupying your mind

do a puzzle or play a board game

challenge your negative thoughts

practise relaxation and breathing exercises

read a book


Keeping busy

plan your meals for the week

go grocery shopping

do some cleaning or laundry

remember, support is available!

If you or someone you know is in immediate danger or distress please call 000

If you are in need of support contact one of the following numbers (available 24/7):

Social Channels




We can arrange for interpreter services for most languages

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Acknowledgement Acknowledgement Acknowledgement Acknowledgement

selectability acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land on which we provide services and pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging. We acknowledge those with lived experience and those who support and partner with us to improve mental wellbeing and prevent suicide across regional Queensland.

Reconciliation Action Plan | Reflect