This is the simple message we want to send out at this time.
There has been much talk of physical distancing this week, and social connection and wellbeing has never been more important as we all try to adjust to the many and ongoing changes in our lives.
That is why, this afternoon, Mental Health Australia commenced its social awareness and connection campaign to promote positive mental health and wellbeing during this time of heightened anxiety.
It seems hard to be socially connected right now, but we have already begun to see so many creative ways communities around the world are staying connected while keeping physically distant.
Over the next few weeks, we will be promoting a series of community-driven ideas to help people keep mentally well during this difficult time, and sharing the wonderful content so many of you have already begun producing.
The best way to follow the campaign and help us spread the message is to use the hashtag #LookAfterYourMentalHealthAustralia.
As a start, here are five of the ideas we’ll be promoting:
- Stay active
Exercise increases wellbeing and helps reduce symptoms of common mental health concerns. Your gym may have closed or your fitness groups may be cancelled, but that doesn’t mean you can’t exercise. Yoga, Pilates, HIIT routines can be done in a relatively small space and with no equipment. Have a search on the internet for free workout videos and guides.
- Eat well
Eating a nutritious diet is great for both your physical and mental health. As much as possible, try and stick to a healthy diet despite changes to routine and environment. And supermarket availability.
- Connect with others
Physical distancing is crucial right now, but social connection is more important than ever. Use technology to talk to your friends and family, using video chats to talk face-to-face where possible. Reach out to your neighbours and community. Share how you’re feeling, and invite others to share with you.
- Limit coronavirus media consumption (and choose trusted sources)
Choose how often you engage with news and social media about the coronavirus, and be sure to find news sources that are trustworthy and factual. It might help to add in some content that makes you laugh and feel comfortable wherever possible.
- Try and keep to a routine and make it fun
Keep to a regular routine as much as possible, including exercise, sleep, daily chores, work, recreational activities and connecting with others… and make it fun where you can.
We will come through this.
Take care and stay safe.
It was great to literally ‘see’ more than 20 members and stakeholders on today’s Mini Members Policy Forum webinar via Zoom, and a special thanks to Gerry Naughtin from the NDIA for his informative presentation as always. Over the coming weeks we’ll look to continue to conduct these types of Mini Forums via Zoom for our members and stakeholders, and we look forward to seeing more of you all to help inform our policy discussions and the ongoing reform of mental health services at this time.