Maintaining mental heath

by Aaron Delaporte

Maintaining control when it is out of our control

This document provided courtesy of Bowls Australia

Rapid change creates anxiety, and uncertainty, especially when it means changing how we live.  Here are some recommendations that can support your mental health and wellbeing over the coming months with the aim of minimising anxiety and stress.

You can create more control than you may initially think, and it focuses on making good choices and ways in which you can respond to situations.

 

Health safety and following trusted information sources

 

Limit your time watching the news

  • Continuously wanting to know everything about the situation can become overwhelming and alarming – this may lead to feeling helplessness
  • Identify 2-3 times per day to check / watch the updates

 

Maintain calm – training your thoughts

  • Try not to let yourself become too upset or have your daily functioning completely disrupted
  • Accept that you cannot always keep control of the situation – take specific measures to deal with the problems to keep your daily life organised and structured
  • Take notice of your thoughts and mood and start to share how you feel with others

 

Plan for the ‘new’ norm

  • Make a concerted effort to adopt the new measures in place – adhere to self-isolation, social distancing and washing hands.
  • Visualise how you will feel and how you will behave

 

Set ‘new’ goals

  • Set yourself realistic and achievable goals
  • Stay prepared – postponement/cancellations add uncertainty, so speak family and friends about how to maintain your daily routine with a focus on your new goal
  • Keep training your thoughts

 

Remember your ‘why’

  • Reflecting, remembering and recommitting to your ‘why’ or reason for training/competing in Bowls, can you help you remain positive and motivated

 

Keep physically active

  • Use the time to focus on good recovery practices – yoga, stretching, foam rolling
  • Become creative with ways you can exercise at home

 

Stay connected

  • Do not isolate yourself – we are fortunate to be able to keep in touch digitally
  • Share your thoughts and feelings and exchange examples of alternative daily activities

 

Practice gratitude

  • When faced with uncertainty it may create worry, and this can be confronting.  Take the time to STOP and identify 3-5 things you are grateful for.  This can help you to ground yourself and minimise the negative thoughts

 

Seek out support

This situation may make you feel insecure, scared, restless or irritable.  Sometimes this can also lead to a feeling of lack of control, avoidance behaviour, disturbed sleep, anxiety or even panic.

Remember – it is okay to reach out for support.