What makes up your wellbeing?
Whether it’s handling the stress of an upcoming event or navigating through unplanned changes, it’s inevitable at times that you might not feel yourself. While we may all experience universal emotions at one time or another, like stress or frustration, it’s insightful to know that everyone handles their feelings in different ways. Take a moment to reflect on how you handle yourself at the moment when you’re stressed or frustrated. Are you content with how you react or do you feel like there’s room for improvement?
We often fail to recognise that we can’t control every environment we find ourselves in. Whether it’s the work group you’re placed in for a school assignment or the relatives you have to spend time with at family events. While it may be very challenging, a useful coping technique is to direct your attention to what’s in your circle of control. You can’t control the environment, but you can control your response. We are ultimately responsible for how we manage the ebb and flow of our emotions and we’ve shared some thoughts on how you can get through those times when you don’t feel quite like yourself.
Have you ever noticed how your breathing naturally changes with different emotions? When you’re stressed you may take fast, shallow breaths. When you're relaxed you may take slow, deep breaths. You can use your breathing to help calm your emotions too. Have a look at the Calm app that guides you through different breathing techniques. You can download Calm on the App store or get it on Google Play.
Can you count how many times you have expressed yourself by saying I am really anxious? In saying you are the entire feeling, it gives you no pathway to move into a less anxious state. A worthwhile way of navigating through your feelings is to reshape your thoughts and instead consider expressing yourself by saying I’m experiencing some feelings of anxiety. You can sit with the feeling, but know that there are other parts of you so you will eventually move away from the feeling. Headspace have some really helpful tips on taking these steps.
Spend some time reading
If you’ve never really been a book person, that’s okay, but just know there’s a tonne of new experiences and words waiting for you. Reading is a really great way that allows you to explore the world without even leaving your house! If you’re not sure what you’re interested in reading about, have a think about what general themes you might enjoy, whether it’s fantasy, romance, adventure, mystery, there’s a book on almost anything. There's even a book genre quiz you can complete to work out which book genre is best suited to your personality.
Move your body
Whether you love an intensive work out or would prefer a gentle walk, being active is a really beneficial way to maintain your wellbeing. It's important to keep the work outs varied so you're less likely to lose interest repeating the same work out. Have you ever tried pilates? What about badminton? We’ve put together five home workouts to help get you started.
If you’re more of an outdoors person, try making a calendar for yourself with different local walking tracks to explore. There are so many places to see in our Tassie environment, we just need to remember to explore them!
Create meaningful connections
When was the last time you had a quality zen moment? Everyone recharges their human batteries differently. It’s important to work out what allows you to maintain balance and remain grounded. Building meaningful connections in your life is a helpful place to start. If you feel a little alone, how about having a chat with a close friend? Give them a call or arrange a time in your schedules when you’re both free to have some quality time and fully connect with each other.
If you prefer to spend time individually, maybe you could work on developing your hobbies. Do you enjoy playing sports? Have you ever completed an entire jigsaw puzzle without anyone else contributing? What about experiencing the satisfaction of growing a herb plant and then eating the produce that you grew? Whoever said colouring in books are just for kids hasn't discovered adult colouring in books - they're really relaxing. If you need an immediate zen moment right now, try the soothing app called Prune. It's available on the App store and on Android too.
Get cooking in the kitchen
Reconnect with what you’re feeding your body. Sometimes we reach for convenience over what our bodies might actually need. When was the last time you tried cooking a new recipe? If you’re in need of a little helping hand there are lots of local cooking classes in Tasmania, like the Farmhouse Kitchen in Wattle Grove. You can always get lots of recipe ideas online too, head to Taste for some inspiration. Flavour is the spice of life, why not get creative!
Cleanse, cleanse, cleanse!
It might not be spring but it’s always good to have a clean out. Have you got a cupboard or a whole room you need to sort? If you have clothes or other items that are in good condition you might consider selling them or donating them to a local charity. Letting go of physical items that you don’t use or love can be so refreshing and help you focus on what you really need in your life. You may have heard of Marie Kondo, she's a real inspiration for de-cluttering your space. If you’ve already got your own space organised, maybe you could share your time with a friend or family member that needs some help spring cleaning.
Help out your community
Sometimes we can forget how rewarding it can feel when we help other people. There are often vulnerable people in the community that rely on volunteers to help make their life journey a little easier. Maybe you could look into volunteering at a soup kitchen? If you love animals there’s sure to be a local animal shelter that needs your help to walk, cuddle and love all of the animals. Is there a neighbour in your street that you might be able to run an errand for? There are often social days at retirement villages that would really benefit from a new personality in their world. If you’ve ever wanted to donate blood but just not gotten around to it, now’s the time. Head on over to the Australian Red Cross Lifeblood program to learn all about donating.
If you or someone you know are feeling alone and need some help, you can always contact these teams for support: Headspace, Lifeline, Beyond Blue, Kids Help Line, 1800RESPECT, Mensline Australia, Black Dog Institute, QLife, ReachOut.