What keeps us strong and what takes our strength away

Positive mental health means feeling strong from the inside. Feeling strong in the face of lifes challenges is important for our hearts, our minds, and our spirit.
You can try your best to make yourself feel good.

Some things you can do are...

  • Spending time with friends and family
  • Going hunting
  • Being on country
  • Playing sport
  • Doing exercise
  • Eating healthy food
  • Stop doing doing things that put you at risk (like using drugs, drinking, alcohol, hiding away from people or spending too much time alone)

(Mental Health Commission 2013).

How else can I look after myself?

Eat healthy food / Mirrka Walykumunu

Eating healthy food is good for your mental and physical health. If you eat a lot of the same thing or eat a lot of unhealthy food it can make your mental health worse.

Getting regular exercise

Moderate exercise can help to improve your mood and how you feel. It can also help you to feel better about yourself.

Exercise can inlcude gardening, dancing, football, softball, hunting, even cleaning!


Get enough sleep / Kunkunpa Walykumunu Ngarripayi

If you're not getting enough sleep you can feel no good in your body and mind. How you feel can also affect how you sleep – if you're feeling no good you may sleep all day and all night, or you may think too much and get no sleep. If you have problems sleeping every night you may be able to get help, Please go to the clinic, or talk to an Aboriginal Health Worker or doctor.

Talk to someone / Kutupanka Watjarra

If you are worrying too much or having a hard time, talking to someone about your problems can help. If you don't want to talk to a friend or family, there are other ways that you can talk to someone about how you’re feeling. You can speak to a health worker you trust, a Ngangkari or Pastor, someone at PHaMs or the clinic. Or if you want speak to someone outside of your community there are telephone help lines you can call (free call) or chat with on instant 


Click here for support lines

Stress / Purlkara Kulilpayi

Try not to get too stressed.

A lot of things in life can cause stress which can effect your mind and spirit. Try to slow down or find a way to avoid things that stress you too much.

Telling stories in the sand, using sticks, story wire and fingers, is calming and relaxing. This can help to help us feel calm and is a good way to share stories.

Drug and alcohol use / Tirtu Gunja Patjalpayi Wama tjikilpayinya kata kurrarriku

Using alcohol and drugs can start a mental illness in some people. Drugs and alcohol can also cause problems with getting the right treatment if you do become unwell. If you feel things are no longer in your control please ask for help from your clinic, Aboriginal Health Workers workers or Gunja Wanti.

Click here for support lines


Art can help us to express our feelings and can make us feel good.

Painting can be calming it also connects us to culture and country. Making Tjanpi can help us to focus on one thing and not worry about what's going on around us.

Music / Turlku

Listening to music is a great way to work through your feelings and stresses – listening, dancing and having fun.Playing music in bands and writing songs is a good way to work together to express yourself and tell your stories

Information on this page is adapted from the Rethink website (Rethink Mental Illness, 2015) and has been approved by PHaMs Cultural Brokers as culturally appropriate.

Link Available here