What does prioritising your mental and emotional well being look like?
Taking positive steps to look after your mental health can mean exercise, good diet, enough sleep and also, talking to someone.
The Mystep team in Griffith have been operating for over 12 months now and want to remind people that talking to a counsellor is something people can do to stay on top of stress or worries, before they become as issue.
"People often have misconceptions of what counselling actually is," Amy Salmon, team manager at Mystep Griffith said.
"Counselling is a collaboration. It's working with the person not working 'on' the person. We provide helpful tools and strategies but the person is the expert in their own life, we're not."
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Mystep is a federally funded initiative that provides short and long term counselling support for anyone in the area for free and completely confidential. People of any age, gender, background and need can access the service with or without a Mental Health Care Plan from a GP.
"So when people contact us we do a triage over the phone just to check what they're after and make sure we are the right service for them," Ms Salmon said.
"We would then arrange a first appointment which is usually an assessment which is an exploration of what's going on for that person, what's helped and what hasn't helped in the past, what supports they've got and what they hope to achieve."
The passionate Mystep team are specialist nurses, psychologists, social workers and counsellors as well as peer support workers, explained Ms Salmon.
"We care and genuinely want to make sure that people's lives are happy, healthy and that people are best equipped to cope with the world as it's being thrown at them," she said.
"The peer support workers have a lived experience of mental health and can help to walk people through the journey and support them through the process of recovery. They are a really integral part of the team."
One in five Australians experience mental distress in a year, so Ms Salmon emphasised that it's important people feel that they can get the help they need.
"Recognising that it's okay to not be okay is really important," she said.
"The sooner people get help the better their life will be and the sooner they will recover."
People interested in getting in touch with Mystep can contact the Central Access Navigation Service on 1800 931 603. People can get in touch directly or refer someone else like a loved one or friend that they may be concerned about. Mystep also offers tele-health services for people who cannot attend face-to-face sessions.
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