Between the fires, smoke, hailstorms, heatwaves, drought, floods and coronavirus people just haven’t had their usual rest and recovery time over the holiday season. Anxiety is at an all-time high, and people who had been looking forward to a great year are now feeling despondent and pessimistic. I see it in the grim faces of women who sink tearfully into the chair in front of me at my practice.
Midlife is a confusing time full of reassessment and change, so this can all seem like the final straw that will break our camel-like backs. The situation demands a radical shift of mindset for us to get a grip and get on with things.
Ok, there is no denying that sucky things have happened in the last couple of months and that 2020 did NOT get off to a great start. Many of us view this from our reference point as middle aged, privileged, experienced individuals who have seen and dealt with adversity before. We are therefore uniquely qualified to offer some perspective on these events to our younger family members and colleagues.
We are also still energetic and capable enough to offer real practical support to others, which many older members of society cannot. We therefore have a choice to make in these trying times: we can choose to model resilience and create opportunities, or to wallow in despair and hopelessness. We can catastrophise, or we can galvanise our communities. Life goes on, whether it looks the same as it did last year or not. Are we going to ride the wave or let it swamp us?
Positive change starts with the smallest of choices: the choice to get out of bed and walk the dog rather than hide under the covers in denial of the day; the choice to take a healthy lunch to work rather than give into the siren song of comforting, deep-fried carbs; the choice to take a deep breath and respond with compassion to someone who’s been rude to us, rather than lose our shit. Massive change is overwhelming, but each small choice is doable. Just make them one at a time, and repeat.
Whilst there is no denying the power of positive thinking, everyone gets overwhelmed sometimes and can’t find their way out. If you, or someone you know, isn’t coping then the most empowering thing you can do is talk to someone about it.
There are Medicare rebates for Telehealth psychology for people in rural and remote areas. If you have been directly impacted by the fires there are even more options available to you. This link provides some accessible options for Mental Health Support Services. There are also a wealth of electronic mental health resources available for all kinds of mental health issues.
If you are dealing with debilitating menopause related symptoms in addition to everything else, don’t put up with them a moment longer! Speak to your GP or to a WellFemme menopause specialist, and have one less issue dragging you down in 2020.
Heavily discounted consultations are available for women in regional, rural and remote areas who agree to complete short questionnaires for WellFemme’s Pilot Study.
Not sure if Telehealth is for you? Free trial consultations are available to find out how WellFemme can help with your menopausal symptoms.