Survival Cards - Ways to cope in life (Downloadable version and pack)


Attribution Theory is one of the four great social science cornerstones used when working with clients. It helps people to understand an event and the motivations that impact on them.


Using Attribution Theory is essential for creating long term change in people's lives as it helps them to talk about the meaning of behaviour and their possible choices. Survival Cards are a practical way to apply Attribution Theory.


Survival Cards (Downloadable PDF or Pack) are a resilience-based tool for discussions with individuals or groups that name the positive and negative solutions people use to cope with life challenges. People often use negative coping strategies, even when they detest those responses. The difference between these choices is more governed by the interaction between our significant hopes and dreams and our fears/anxieties. Survival Cards use a life systems approach to support change in people's lives. Survival Cards are symbolised as:

    Cards with blue borders:        Restrictive Solutions (negative coping strategies)
    Cards with green borders:      Enabling Solutions (positive coping strategies)

Survival Cards support the idea that people's lives are full of driving forces (hopes and dreams) and reactive forces that work against them (fears and anxieties). As a result of these forces, our actions or behaviours are either restrictive (less likely to achieve our hopes and dreams) or they are enabling (more likely to lead to greater achievement of hopes and dreams as long as we learn from the challenges we face). The resource includes:

  •     34 different Survival Cards (Version 5) with images. Click here to view a sample of the cards.

  •     7 exercises for creative use of these cards

  •     A guide for using these resources


  •     PDF Downloadable Version - $22.00 Aust (GST included). Click here   for ordering the Downloadable PDF.

  •     Survival Cards Pack - $77.00 Aust (GST included) includes Australian postage (see below). Click here for ordering the pack. (These cards have been commercially printed and this is the easiest way to immediately start using this great resource

If you order the Downloadable PDF:

1.    Print the Survival Cards. They are designed to be printed in colour on white or coloured paper.

    Trim each of the cards after the printed. They are best laminated and can then be used for a variety of exercises.

2.    Alternatively, they can just be printed in black and white.

    At the end of a reflective process, people can be encouraged to keep the card as a reminder of a goal they are working on.

3.    Read the introduction and overview of the exercises and enjoy and creatively use this resource.




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