Looking after your mental health – Lisa from OneWave and Fluro Friday shares some advice
We chatted to Lisa Nichols from OneWave in Woolgoolga on the Coffs Coast. Lisa is also an R U OK? Ambassador. Coastbeat asked Lisa to share her thoughts on how people can best look after their mental health whilst at home and therefore, away from their usual support networks.
One Wave is a worldwide non-profit that tackles mental health issues with surfing and the wellness of the ocean. The movement is all about helping people understand they are not alone. 65% of people with mental health issues do not seek help. OneWave wants to change the way people see mental health.
The main awareness campaign of OneWave is Fluro Friday. This amazing campaign now takes place at over 110 beaches in 25 countries around the world. With Fluro Friday, people come together each week at the beach wearing their brightest clothing to talk about mental health. Of course, they get in some saltwater therapy too. There tends to be a lot of hugging and close contact and in light of this, the Fluro Friday movement has moved online for the time being. Scroll down for info on how to join.
Here are Lisa’s tips:
- I believe the most important thing is for people to remain connected. That’s where positive Facebook groups are helpful. You could also consider starting your own app or page with friends and family. The old saying, ‘If you don’t laugh, you’ll cry,’ has never been truer than at this time….just because there are so many jokes and memes being shared doesn’t mean we don’t care or are not taking this seriously. A laugh is also a good stress reliever.
- Kindness. I can’t stress this enough. Random acts of kindness are the best way to make you feel good…and make someone else feel good too.
- There are a lot of online yoga, mindfulness and exercise classes. Clear some time to participate in these. Try and choose a local person’s broadcast so you still feel part of our community.
- Fresh air and sunshine are important for your mental health. Additionally, COVID-19 does not like heat so sitting in the sun while you sip hot water is highly recommended.
- Fresh food and a healthy diet will also help. Now’s the time to be inventive and create new recipes.
- Reach out if you’re feeling like you’re not coping. There are several support phone services out there or pick up the phone and talk to a friend.
- Gardening is amazingly satisfying. Most nurseries and hardware will do home delivery so order up enough to start a vegie patch. You will appreciate the fresh, spray free vegetables down the track.
- Try not to worry. My dad told me once that worrying won’t change anything, especially if it’s out of our control. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, take three deep breaths then, look for three objects, (e.g. tree, grass, sky,) listen for three sounds (e.g. bird, car, ocean) and feel three things (the ground at your feet, the sun on your back, a breeze.)
- Start a gratitude diary. I used to think that was silly until I started one. It really makes you think.
- Make a list and finish some tasks.
Read further information on looking after yourself when working from home here.
Fluro Friday Woopi will be online each Friday. The Facebook page has all the info you need to get started. Everyone is welcome to join in!
For further guidance on staying connected in these challenging times, watch the short R U OK? video here