Due to the demand for one-to-one counselling appointments at peak times during the semester, the waiting time for an appointment can be up to several weeks. We appreciate that you may be feeling quite distressed and overwhelmed at this time and are hopeful that many of the self-care strategies detailed in this brochure may be useful to you during this waiting period. A list of community-based services is also listed as possible alternative options for help and support.
- Establish a daily routine and try to stick to it.
- Aim to eat nourishing food and don’t skip breakfast.
- Avoid alcohol, drugs and excessive amounts of caffeine as these substances can adversely affect mood.
- Engage in some form of physical activity on a regular basis (walking, bike riding, surfing, swimming, yoga, playing a sport).
- Involve yourself in activities which make you feel competent or successful.
- Find a constructive way to relax. This could include listening to relaxations CDs, playing a musical instrument, getting in touch with nature, watching a TV show that makes you laugh.
- Make the conscious effort to limit your exposure to distressing situations. This could include monitoring what you watch on TV, the type of music you listen to, the people you spend time with.
- Accept that you are going through a difficult time right now—don’t criticise and judge yourself harshly if you are not achieving to the best of your ability at the moment.
- Try to appreciate and value those aspects of your life which are still positive.
- Let family and friends know that you are going through a difficult time right now and that you may need their support. If you feel you can’t be alone, see if a friend or family member can stay with you.
- Wherever possible, choose to be with people who are positive and who care about you.
- Try not to take on other people’s problems at this point in time. Let them know you care about them and encourage them to seek help from other sources.
- Learn to say no to unwanted demands from friends, family or others.
- If possible, avoid making any life-changing decisions. Wait until you are in a far less distressed frame of mind and have had the opportunity to talk these decisions through with the Counsellor or with someone else who can assist you in making a balanced and informed decision.
If your situation reaches crisis point and you feel you are at risk of harming yourself, ring Lifeline or one of the other emergency contacts:
- Lifeline Australia (24-hour phone counselling service) Tel: 131 114
- Sunshine Coast Mental Health Services Tel: 1300 767 155 (available both during business hours and as an after-hours emergency number for anyone experiencing a mental health crisis)
- Police or QLD Ambulance Service Tel: 000
- Suicide Call Back Service Tel: 1300 659 467