When the Going Gets Tough

Written by: Nevenka (Nev) Alempijevic

Have you ever faced the death of a loved one, a marriage breakdown, relationship difficulties, health issues, financial issues, difficulties with your children and/or elderly parents, bullying etc.? I can guarantee that you said Yes to at least one of the above. We all experience tough times in life, and at times, it can feel as if the whole world is collapsing in on you.

Life can hand us some curveballs and no one can have it all together all of the time. Think of it this way. What do you do when you notice that your tractor or vehicle isn’t running well? Do you ignore the problems and hope they fix themselves? Or, do you pull over and check out the issue? Do you regularly maintain your vehicle? Do you rotate your tyres and ensure they have the right amount of pressure in them? Do you ensure the radiator has enough water? Do check the oil? We are no different to our vehicles. That means that there are things we can all do to keep us on an even keel, even when life is really rough. Here’s some of our favourite wellbeing actions:
• Stay active (working outdoors, walking the dog, taking the kids to the park, playing a sport etc.)
• Take control of the things within your control (finances, physical ailments, contingency planning etc.)
• Make space for downtime, friendships and family
• Eat a healthy, balanced diet • Find time to laugh
• Surround yourself with positive and kind people
• Get a good night’s sleep – Regularly!

So, what happens if you keep ignoring the signs that you’re struggling with your mental health and wellbeing? Well, to be honest, you wouldn’t be the first person to try this. Unfortunately, the ripple effects gets larger and larger, the longer we keep ignoring, minimising, or pushing away our painful experiences. Over time, stress and pressure will manifest in physical issues such as pain, heart disease, digestive issues etc… The decision is ultimately in your hands.

Do you still feel like there’s shame and failure associated with reaching out for help? We know from experience that the greatest stigma you will face is from yourself. People who care about you want you to feel good. Just because you are doing it tough, doesn’t mean that you are not capable. You are in the driver’s seat!

• You get to choose who you tell, and how much you say
• You get to choose what is right for you
• You get to choose what actions you take when working with professionals

Where to turn to help? Our RAW Connect team are here to help you take the first steps towards reaching out for help. Please call 1800 RAW TAS (1800 729 827)