The Fiji Times

Dealing with stress

‘Forgive and forget lessens the burden’

- By SITERI SAUVAKACOL­O

STRESS is one of the most talked about issues in society. In yesteryear­s, we believed stress happened only to working people. But this is no longer the case today. Anyone can suffer from stress if lives are not managed well, if the right diet is not consumed and if the environmen­t we are living in is not too supportive.

Stress has cost the lives of many people. It has brought about disasters to households and has also been seen as a reason people took their own lives or committed suicide today.

While many talks have eventuated about the causes and ways to deal with stress, it is important to note that every single thing develops from you as a person.

Counsellor Mercy Gogoi says the first hour of every day is very important as it determines and influences how a person will spend the rest of the day.

She shared this with participan­ts at the Managing Stress in this Fast Paced World forum at the University of the South Pacific’s Lautoka campus on Tuesday last week.

“Most of us have a habit of waking up and checking our messages and phone notificati­ons,” she said.

“By doing this, you are already depleting your energy.

“We need to charge our body batteries just like how we charge our phone batteries.

“That first one hour you need to focus on your heart-set, your mindset, your soulset and your health-set and spend at least 10 minutes being silent and meditate.”

The former Fiji National University counsellor said Fijians needed to develop the act of eating something healthy and doing productive activities which would help them maximise their potential.

She also reminded students to let go of any situation that would create stress in their lives.

“When you forgive and forget, you are lessening that burden from your head so it’s extremely important to understand how to let go.

“It’s extremely important to focus on the brighter things in life.”

Don’t ever underestim­ate your ability to achieve positive outcomes.

Former Fiji Correction­s Service psychologi­st Leba Kama also emphasised the need for people to not underestim­ate their ability to achieve positive outcomes.

Ms Kama said people were usually let down by judgments and comments passed from other people.

She said many times this led them to endure unnecessar­y stress which created fear and sometimes led to suicidal tendencies.

“You have your own ability, don’t ever underestim­ate your own ability, and don’t wait for somebody to tell you it’s going to eventuate,” she told students and guests.

“Positive self-talk is very important and our brain stem has been made for instant survival.

“Repeated thoughts are engraved in your mind, so if every time your self-talk is positive, it will always give you positive results.”

Foundation for Rural Integrated Enterprise­s and Developmen­t (FRIEND) Fiji director Sashi Kiran also reminded participan­ts that it was important to develop their own inner strength, especially in communitie­s where they were always judged.

The forum organised by FRIEND Fiji and the USP to mark World Mental Health Day drew great support from students and individual­s in Lautoka.

It is also a way of taking the message out to the public on the need of being aware of their daily lives.

There are also assistance available around us so the best thing to do is to seek assistance if someone feels his/ her life is not going on well.

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 ?? Picture: medicalnew­stoday ?? Allowing small stress factors to cause lingering negative emotions may be harmful for your long-term health.
Picture: medicalnew­stoday Allowing small stress factors to cause lingering negative emotions may be harmful for your long-term health.
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