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Getting Through Together Digest: 3rd June 2020

Thursday, June 4, 2020   Posted in: Newsletters By: Administrator With tags: newsletter, wellbeing, resilience, lockdown

Kia ora. As we move about our days, it can be easy to slip back into old habits.

Many of us took some good things out of noho rāhui/ lockdown, like cutting down on coffee, getting more exercise, and taking time to appreciate the little things. That said, there are some habits we developed in our bubbles which could be good to ditch - like long Netflix binges or drinking more than we should.

In this edition we take a wee look at a very common 'lockdown resolution' - weaning off what helped so many of us through noho rāhui - our screens.

We also shine a light on some of those for whom normal is still a wee way off. As we continue to win the battle against COVID-19, please don't forget about those still doing it tough. Keep up the kindness Aotearoa.

All Right? and the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand

Towards a healthy screen balance

During noho rāhui we had to find new ways to connect with our loved ones, workmates and all those in our lives but outside our bubbles. For many, this meant much of life revolved around a screen.

As we transition back into the world, the question many people are asking themselves is, how do I wean myself or my children off screens?

We really enjoyed this The Happiness Lab podcast which suggests thinking of screen time like food. Getting lost in a Netflix rabbit hole could be lumped into the junk food category, while an online yoga class or a Zoom with your BFF would be a big wholesome bowl of quinoa and vegetables. Of course, a bit of junk food every now and then is completely fine!

So, if you've found yourself hunkered down in front of reruns of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air lately, we reckon it's a good idea to ask yourself, 'what did I used to do to pass the time?'

Life at home during level two

When Kayla White was born with hydrops fetalis she became the first child in Aotearoa to survive the rare lung condition. Now aged ten, Kayla has already clocked up 16 surgeries.

Due to her health condition, Kayla, her brother Lukas, 8, and mum, Angela are among those still living in their bubble.

“I was planning on sending them back to school this week but the 100 number limit makes me nervous," says Angela.

Angela asks people to remember those still stuck at home and consider the needs of our immunocompromised and vulnerable.

“Treasure this time and enjoy it but think about these other people and kids still at home – and do the right thing. Be mindful. Keep the distancing going.

Read the full story of Kayla and her family who are still in their bubble.

Continuing to spread kindness

Alofa atu, Alofa mai. We are stronger when we are together.
My strength does not come from me alone, but from many.
We are a collective. We don’t stand alone.

The team at Pasifika health provider, Tangata Atumotu Trust, are continuing to adapt their approach to help elderly matua remain healthy and well at home.

As well as carrying out socially distant healthy food drops to clients, the team have been singing hymns down the phone and surprising clients with songs and dance.

Check out this video to see how their small acts of kindness are making a big difference (YouTube).

Looking after ourselves whilst we look after others

Emerging from our COVID-19 bubbles can make us feel full of purpose - but it can also be overwhelming and leave us with mixed emotions.

It’s easy to forget that we need to also focus on our own wellbeing, especially if it’s been a tough time.

Jane Beamsley (Te Arawa, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Kahungunu) opened her own community recovery hub in Kaikohe inspired by her own journey through depression, anxiety and addictions just before COVID-19. She felt full of purpose helping others in the new hub - but when COVID-19 came along, it had to abruptly shut its doors.

Jane felt low and felt like her “purpose was taken away.” She had to pull out “every single tool” that she’d learnt in her recovery journey to get through.

When Aotearoa moved to level 2, Jane returned to the gym, kept up with her studies, used Zoom to reconnect with her support groups and volunteered at the local COVID-19 clinic doing admin.

“I know that having a routine is key to my wellness and wellbeing,” she says.

Now her recovery hub, Whakaoranga Whānau, has reopened for small groups and that is helping Jane immensely.

Read Jane’s full story about getting through.

Check out this resource by the Mental Health Foundation’s resource on how to manage mixed emotions if you’re experiencing them as we move down alert levels - like many of us!

It's ka pai to just keep swimming!

It’s all right if you’re just not feeling it today. It's also all right if you're feeling stoked, ka pai or a tad on edge.

Our newest set of eight wellbeing posters remind us all that it's totally normal to feel a range of emotions right now - and that however we're feeling, that's all right.

Order our free set of Getting Through Together posters online today if you know of a workplace, school or community centre that could do with a little extra kindness and aroha. The posters are available in Te Reo and English.

Not all right?

For many of us, these new challenges and the loss of our regular routines is causing stress. We want you to know that however you’re feeling, there is someone to talk to and free help available. It’s okay to reach out if you need to - we all need a bit of support from time-to-time.

Call or text 1737 to speak with a trained counsellor anytime - it’s free and completely confidential. You can also call Lifeline on 0800 543354 or text HELP to 4357.

Check out the Mental Health Foundation’s website for further advice on how to stay mentally well during this time.

Until next time, stay well Aotearoa.
And remember, we'll get through this - together.

Sign up now for the Getting Through Together Digests.

Healthy Christchurch Champions

  • Canterbury District Health Board
  • Christchurch City Council
  • Environment Canterbury
  • Ministry of Health
  • Ngai Tahu
  • NZ Police
  • Pegasus Health
  • University of Otago, Christchurch