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Life can feel pretty wonky right now. The world was already somewhat unpredictable and chaotic, without the presence of a global pandemic. Now in 2020, our day to day lives resemble a cringey episode of a poorly written teen series, possibly called “The Virus”, starring …well you.

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You’ve probably heard the phrase “be kind to yourself.” Perhaps when you were going through a tough time or someone heard you being especially hard on yourself. But what does it actually mean? Having a bubble bath? Gagging that self-critical voice? For those who find this concept a bit mysterious, we’ll talk through how to put self-compassion into practice. 

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As we face a global pandemic, an imminent winter, and the jarring realisation that Jacinda Ardern will never be our prime minister (😢) it can be hard to figure out which of our emotions are circumstantial, and which are symptoms of something more concerning.

 

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The dumpster fire that is the COVID-19 lockdown has been hard on all of us – for so many reasons. But after the initial shock of being ‘locked down’ turned into our ‘new normal’, some of us might be surprised to find that the easing restrictions feel like a whole new thing to be afraid of.

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Sometimes the people in our lives managing complex mental health challenges go through some really tough stuff.

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This blog article is provided by the team at Arafmi Ltd. Arafmi are a not-for-profit community organisation that has been providing quality services to people with mental illness, their families, carers and volunteers in Queensland for over 40 years. During COVID-19 they’re right there alongside family, friends and carers of people with complex mental health issues and today they’re sharing their insights from the front line.

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What is Mindfulness?

Reading about mindfulness without actually experiencing it for yourself is like going to your local café for brunch without tasting any of the food. Just as the point of a brunch outing is to enjoy avocado loaded sourdough, mindfulness exercises need to be practiced in order to enjoy the most delicious meal of all - emotional calmness.

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There’s something inherently frustrating about being human.

It’s not the fact that a good dollop of smashed avocado is $17 at your local café, or that one guy at your gym who insists on loudly using his mobile phone your entire workout. It isn’t even your mother-in-law’s passive aggressive remarks about how irresponsible it is to have multiple superannuation accounts (thanks, Susan). Beyond everything, one of the most frustrating realities of human life is the fact that everything in this world is completely impermanent.

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Caring for someone with complex mental health issues comes with a unique set of challenges. Some days, carers or family and friends of people with complex mental health issues find themselves frustrated and exhausted, whilst others are filled with connection, compassion and laughter.

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With loads of research and awareness, the Australian community is beginning to understand the presention of this common mental health condition. However there are still a few key assumptions that we're keen to unpack. Here are four misconceptions about Bipolar disorder, so you can equip yourself with insight and knowledge to help break down stigma.

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Spoiler alert: the answer is no

Dating can be a love-hate experience for the average Australian adult. Many of us are opting for long term relationships with Netflix and a cup of Bushell’s over the unpredictable modern era of dating. But if you do choose to navigate new relationships, it can be challenging no matter what. And, when living with Borderline Personality Disorder, navigating new relationships can bring a range of other aspects to consider.

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