Achieving and maintaining psychological wellbeing

mental health image

Almost half of all Australians between the ages of 16-85 years (7.3 million people) have experienced mental disorders at some point in their lives. Anxiety, stress, depression, alcohol and drug abuse can have a long term effect on your health, wellbeing and work productivity.

Self help is a great start to the road to recovery. Here are eight quick tips from Optum, the company which provides counselling services to University staff:

  1. Build confidence
    Identify your abilities and weaknesses together, accept them
    build on them and do the best with what you have.
  2. Eat right, keep fit
    A balanced diet, exercise and rest can help you to reduce stress and enjoy life.
  3. Give and accept support
    Friends and family relationships thrive when
    they are “put to the test”.
  4. Create a meaningful budget
    Financial problems cause stress. Over-spending
    on our “wants” instead of our “needs” is often the
  5. Manage stress
    Learning how to deal with stressorswhen they threaten to
    overwhelm us will maintain our mental health.
  6. Find strength in numbers
    Sharing a problem with others who have had similar
    experiences may help you find a solution and will make you
    feel less isolated.
  7. Identify and deal with moods
    We all need to find safe and constructive ways to express our
    feelings of anger, sadness, joy and fear.
  8. Learn to be at peace with yourself
    Get to know who you are, what makes you really happy, and
    learn to balance what you can and can’t change about yourself.

Download simple five-step programs from Optum on:

Download more fact sheets and self help programs - log on to the Optum Online Wellbeing Library

Where to go for help - external services

  • Mensline Australia - supports men who are dealing with family and relationship difficulties, particularly around family breakdown and separation. They have a 24 hour, 7 day a week telephone helpline for men available at the cost of a local call.
  • NSW Women's Refuge Resource Centre - provides contacts number for emergency referral services for women.
  • Lifeline - offers telephone counselling 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and can also offer face to face counselling by appointment. Face to face services include financial counselling, problem gambling counselling, relationship counselling, substance abuse counselling and suicide prevention and suicide bereavement support.
  • SANE - is a national charity running campaigns, offering education and undertaking research to improve the lives of people living with a mental illness.
  • Headspace - is Australia's national youth mental health foundation. The organisation provides mental health and wellbeing support, information and services to young people aged 12-25, and their families. Headspace has 30 centres across Australia.
  • beyondblue - is the national depression initiative which provides information, self help guides, events, news and other resources for people with depression, anxiety and related substance misuse disorders.