Health and Wellbeing

Talking tactics for mental health and wellbeing

Sponsored by Breakthough

By SANFL Media

They might be familiar with zones, rotations, presses and stoppages, but now SANFL players are talking about STREAM – a new set of  COVID-19 tactics to help support people’s mental health following the impact of the pandemic.

SANFL Statewide Super Men’s and Women’s League players representing each SANFL Club have come together, virtually, to produce a video clip which encourages the six STREAM tactics: Social networking, Time out, Relaxation, Exercise and entertainment, Alternative thinking and Mindful of others.

Breakthrough Mental Health Research Foundation, a proud partner of SANFL, works closely with Flinders University’s Órama Institute, which has developed the STREAM tactics as an effective wellbeing intervention strategy to counter the challenges of the COVID-19 crisis.

“The Covid-19 crisis has had a big impact on all Australians. While the virus itself is having a vast impact on our physical health and economy, the resulting lifestyle that many of us are now experiencing – self-isolating and working from home – can have negative effects on our mental health and wellbeing,” said Breakthrough Executive Director John Mannion.

“This situation is unprecedented to our community and in fact the world and with increased anxiety this situation may bring, it is vital to look after yourself and your family during this time and focus on your mental health.”

To help cope with social distancing measures, including working from home or self-isolation, follow the six STREAM tactics to support your mental health:

  • Social networking

Physical distancing is necessary, but it does not mean social networking cannot exist. Keep in touch with people through social media, phone calls or a text message.

  • – Time out 

Take time out from each other when at home for long periods. This will help minimise the ongoing stress of being in a limited space with others.

  • R – Relaxation, mindfulness or yoga

Managing anxiety can be helped through breathing, muscular relaxation exercises, mindfulness training, dancing, singing and yoga.

  • E – Exercise and entertainment

If you have a space where you can exercise, that’s always a good way to burn off energy. Alternatively, catch up on some reading, streaming services, digital or board games, hobbies, playing music, etc.

  • A – Alternative thinking

Understand uncertainty will lead to heightened tension and stress. It’s often useful to think things through, even by talking to someone else, e.g. a friend or a counsellor. We are all in this together.

  • M – Mindful of others

Remember, this is a short-term situation and we can all get through if we work together. Maintain caring relationships. Never forget that simple acts of kindness make us feel good about ourselves, the world and the future.

If you or anyone you know would like to speak with someone about your mental health, please phone the new SA COVID-19 Mental Health Support Line on 1800 632 753.

Alternatively, you can contact Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue 1300 224 636.