Part 1: Exercise

Mental Health is something that affects us all, in different ways, on different days and to very different extents.

The truth is that for those of us in the construction game, we very rarely speak about it, let alone take time to actively improve and maintain our own mental wellness.

A key thing I have found with my mental health is that when I move my body, the mind begins to follow. A walk, a run, going to the gym, being out in nature, taking the kids to the park for a run-around, or simply just being out on the water are some simple ways to lift our mental state.

It has been proven that 30 minutes a day of physical exercise can improve mood, reduce stress, improve self- esteem, and even decrease anxiety and depression.

The healthy way to look after our mind is by taking small moments of time daily to give back to ourselves.

As I said earlier, as tradies, we don’t often talk about our mental health with our friends, families, or workmates, so why not start things off in an easy manner by grabbing a mate to join you – be it as a gym partner, a running/ walking friend, or someone who’s into the same hobbies as you. This will help keep you both accountable and motivated. When we work together, anything is possible, and that includes the entry point into starting a conversation around our mental health. Maybe you know someone who is currently struggling with something, or you’ve noticed life is just a little too heavy for them at the moment. With a bit of support, a listening ear, and a shoulder to lean on, you will be their reminder that they can get through this.

What better way to care for the mind and help out your mates than to look good and feel better through exercise.

Where to get help: mentalhealth.org.nz