“Have a plan…and some fun” – Managing stress and anxiety

The Ngalu Fānifo mental health segment, completed its second show last week with Dr Siale Foliaki addressing a couple of key mental health concerns that we all face in our day to day lives which have been compounded during the current Alert Level restrictions: Stress and anxiety.  

Dr Foliaki emphasized that ‘healthy stress’ makes people productive, however the challenge is to maintain this balance so that this healthy stress does not exceed a person’s ability to cope.

A way of coping with stress and anxiety levels is to have a clear plan for the day and to build daily routines, says Dr Foliaki.

“When our natural rhythm of life has changed, during these difficult times, one of the most important things we can do to manage stress is to have some structure.

It’s during these times that having a little bit of a plan for your day really matters.”

He encourages families to have something fun be a part of their daily routine.

“I would advise families to build into their daily plan a little bit of fun that applies to the children, to the adults, to the grandparents.

As human beings, we do well if we have something that we can look forward to. It’s important to have some fun.”

He says doing activities together, going for a walk and being conscious of what is said to each other can help manage stress and anxiety, but also strengthens the relationships within a household. 

“You’re not going to get it right all the time and I would ask families to be patient. Go for a walk, get yourself out of the environment and also be intentional. Make sure you don’t say things that will upset someone.”

#pmafamily #pmaunite

Date: Monday 11 October 2021