Mental Health and Wellbeing

Whitehorse News - May 2020

Mindfulness in the time of Coronavirus.

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted people in different ways across the globe, including here in our Whitehorse community. The uncertainty of the situation can prompt people to feel worried, afraid or lonely. We must take care of our own mental health and wellbeing and that of the people in our care.

Below are some ways to be aware of and manage your mental health and wellbeing during this unprecedented and challenging time:

  • Remain calm: Don't panic. Don’t be concerned with the situations that are beyond your control and don’t dwell on unknowns.
  • Be kind: Whether it be the people that are 1.5 metres ahead of you in the supermarket queue or your own family our community will be strengthened through supporting one another in solidarity rather than being uncaring.
  • Manage media intake: While it is important to stay informed, be mindful of the sources of information you are accessing. Make sure they are accurate and of high quality. See links at left.
  • Keep a routine: Whether you are working from home, supporting children studying or other new circumstances, try to get into a routine. Include some action or time in your day devoted to something you enjoy.
  • Practise mindfulness as a family: Do stretches, yoga or breathing or ask family members to share one positive aspect from each of their day.
  • Stay in touch with your people: You may not be able to see your friends and extended family, but you can stay in touch online and via phone. Make a conscious effort to check in one someone you love each week.

Be mindful through:

  • Meditation: Sitting in a comfortable position, select something to focus on like your breath or a sound. If your mind begins to wander bring it back to your focus.
  • Breathing exercises: Take the time to slow down and become calm by breathing in for three counts and then breathing out for three counts. 
  • Music: Find a comfortable spot and listen to a favourite song.

Here are some useful contacts to assist you and your family through this difficult and uncertain time:

  • Lifeline (24 hours)
    13 11 14
    Crisis support and suicide prevention
  • Parentline (8am-midnight)
    13 22 89 
    Counselling and support for parents and carers every day of the year, including public holidays
  • Beyond Blue Support Service
    Support. Advice. Action. 
    1300 22 4636 
    Maternal and Child Health Advisory Line (24 hours) 
  • Headspace
    Hawthorn: 9006 6500
    Knox: 9801 6088
    Youth mental health service for 12-25 year-olds
  • Relationships Australia
    1300 364 277
  • National Mental Health Helpline
    1300 643 287
  • Mindfulness Activities
    Smiling Mind

Find more information on the Important Support Contacts page.