background preloader


Facebook Twitter

Life is back at a breakneck speed after lockdown and sometimes you just can't do it. In the end it turned out I couldn't.

Life is back at a breakneck speed after lockdown and sometimes you just can't do it

Couldn’t do it all. Couldn't do the caring, the fetching and carrying, the cooking and the sorting. Couldn't do the day job with the extra work, the evening run with the early starts. Couldn't read all the books, all the papers, listen to all the news as well as all the mum stuff. Couldn't sit up half the night with a feverish child and bounce out of bed at 4am. Couldn't keep all those pretty coloured balls in the air all at the same time, spinning and whirling, an amazing sight to see. So when the news came through that after 10 days of managing this mad juggle my husband was going to be caught up in the snap 72-hour quarantine of returning overseas travellers, I knew the game was over. I had sorted a Tetris puzzle of interlocking pieces of friends and family to step in and do this bit, sleep over that night, do this school run right up until his return — but if one piece of the jigsaw fell out, the whole lot would fall over.

The magical juggle is over. In Melbourne's suburbs, Logan felt a void in his life. He filled it with fire and Siva Afi. As the light fades over Werribee beach, a teenager sets a fire.

In Melbourne's suburbs, Logan felt a void in his life. He filled it with fire and Siva Afi

He lights both ends of a long, hooked knife, then looks out over the ocean, his face illuminated by the dancing flames. And then he begins to spin. He is performing the Siva Afi — the fire knife dance — once performed by Samoan warriors to recreate their tales of war upon their return to the village. With deft hands he swiftly twirls, throws, catches the flaming Nifo Oti, his ceremonial knife. As he does so he feels his ancestors around him, and channels them in this ancient dance. Freezing water and a shark encounter helped Ross Frylinck to forge a powerful relationship with nature.

Ross Frylinck has swum at the same place every day for the last ten years.

Freezing water and a shark encounter helped Ross Frylinck to forge a powerful relationship with nature

There, it's not the prevalence of sharks that poses the greatest challenge nor the wave action. It's the freezing cold water. In False Bay, south of Cape Town, South Africa, the ocean temperature gets down to eight or nine degrees Celsius. Ross not only swims there, he does it without a wetsuit, following the advice of his good friend Craig Foster, creator of the Oscar award-winning documentary My Octopus Teacher.

When Craig first spruiked the mental and physical benefits of a daily swim in cold waters, Ross, a filmmaker, writer and free diver, was sceptical. In the part of the world where the two friends live, "it's totally unusual for someone to go diving without a wetsuit … and just crazy. John Bell shares the life lessons he has learnt from Shakespeare. We've all had a pretty ill time this past 12 months or so, thanks to COVID and various lockdowns.

John Bell shares the life lessons he has learnt from Shakespeare

It's been a time of great anxiety and uncertainty but we can find reassurance in great works of art, works that demonstrate our capacity for wonderment, celebration and understanding of the human condition, works that defy time and speak to us from the heart. I've walked side-by-side with William Shakespeare for more than 60 years and his work has come to mean, for me, a sort of secular Bible, a book to live by. He has taught me lessons in empathy, ambition, forgiveness, leadership, the power of language and a deeper understanding of myself. Words affect the course of history It started in high school where I was blessed with not one but two wonderful English teachers, men who loved literature, poetry, theatre and, above all, Shakespeare. Big break for Womn-Kind mental health organisation giving teenage girls 'big sister' mentors.

Ruby Riethmuller started youth mental health organisation Womn-Kind around the common refrain "I thought it was just me".

Big break for Womn-Kind mental health organisation giving teenage girls 'big sister' mentors

Through Womn-Kind, the 24-year-old university student from Wagga Wagga has started a community of young women who act as mentors to pre-teen and teenage girls, offering 24/7 relatable support. "I think, as a teenager, a lot of the experiences and emotions you encounter can leave you feeling a bit isolated … when the reality of it is that experiences as a teenager are totally normal and often very universal," Ms Riethmuller said. Mentoring program getting women in the criminal justice system back on track. Michelle was "an absolute mess" when she met Cheryl Cameron.

Mentoring program getting women in the criminal justice system back on track

The 45-year-old was facing several charges, including drug possession, theft and breaching a community corrections order and needed free legal advice. Some of the offending took place when Michelle's seven-year relationship had descended into violence around 2019. "My partner and I, we were using ice, the drug at the time, and she wasn't coping very well on it," Michelle told Virginia Trioli. When the pandemic arrived in Australia, Michelle and her partner did not have stable accommodation and broke into a house. "We didn't break in in order to, you know, destroy the premises," she said.

"It was mainly somewhere to like stay while the COVID had hit so that we weren't out on the street. Complex trauma almost ended Paul Klotz's life until someone believed him. Paul Klotz had an idyllic childhood adventuring with his dog Benson and horse Sanur through the streets of Emerald in central Queensland.

Complex trauma almost ended Paul Klotz's life until someone believed him

The promising young sportsman had dreams of pulling on the Wallabies' jersey. But his carefree life was shattered by the time he was 13, when he was sent to boarding school in Brisbane in 1973, where he was groomed and sexually abused by a Christian brother. When the teenager gathered the courage to report the abuse to a more senior Christian brother, he too began abusing him. The simple act of walking changed my life – and it can change yours. I thought I knew why I'd decided to embark on a five-month walk alone.

The simple act of walking changed my life – and it can change yours

I was 30 years old, full of energy and ego, and I wanted to be the first to complete the 2,700-kilometre trek across the length of the Western Himalayas solo. I walked up to 40 kilometres a day through the Muslim areas of northern Pakistan, the Buddhist region of northwest India and the Hindu heartlands of Garhwal and Kumaon – some of the most beautiful environments in the world. And in the process, something unexpected happened. Walking overtook me. Defence distances itself from Instagram account that 'fat shames soldiers to the detriment of their mental health' Defence personnel are suspected of using an Instagram account to post secretly recorded imagery of overweight soldiers accompanied by body-shaming commentary.

Defence distances itself from Instagram account that 'fat shames soldiers to the detriment of their mental health'

Key points: More than 5,000 people followed the Instagram page A spokesman for the department of Defence said soldiers who posted derogatory comments could face disciplinary actionThe page was closed down after the ABC contacted the account holder The videos and photos appear to have been taken on military bases during training exercises without the knowledge of the subjects and in breach of Defence policies. The imagery posted on private Instagram page @Speargrasscollector with the hashtag as “Fat F..k Friday” and caused at least one person to self-harm after being alerted to the use of their image, according to a follower of the account.

The page has more than 5,000 followers and the posts breach Defence policies prohibiting the publication of offensive content and engaging in communication that could be offensive or bullying. The Inspired Unemployed, a satirical Instagram account, helps two ex-tradies find themselves. Before the Inspired Unemployed launched on Instagram two years ago, Jack Steele worked in his dad's plastering business, and Matt Ford dabbled on the tools.

The Inspired Unemployed, a satirical Instagram account, helps two ex-tradies find themselves

Both had clocked up many years on job sites, and both wondered if it was their true calling. The idea of locking into one job with the same routine wasn't all that appealing for the two blokes (aged 26 and 27) from the NSW South Coast. In fact, the thought of it scared them. So, while travelling overseas, they started making skits. This World Coming Out Day, Luci wants other transgender women to know they are not alone.

When Luci Virgo came out to her community for the first time, she put on a dress, had her make-up done, and proudly walked down Mount Gambier's main street — feeling free for the first time. It was her 49th birthday. "That was literally the first time I put a dress on and just walked out ... Nippers training made his kids confident in the water and out. He wondered if he could follow their lead. Before he moved to Australia, Damien Cave had a life that many would envy – he worked as a senior journalist at the New York Times, lived in Brooklyn with his wife and two kids and was surrounded by the buzzing culture of one of the world's greatest cities. And yet, something wasn't right.

He felt drained by the relentless grind of living in New York City and a weekly routine which was dominated by his job. "I felt like something in New York wasn't really working for me as an individual, or for us as a family, but I wasn't sure what it was and I definitely wasn't sure how to fix any of it," Mr Cave tells ABC RN's Life Matters. So when the opportunity to move to Sydney to run the New York Times' newly launched Australian bureau came up in 2017, he jumped at it. Involuntary childlessness can cause 'incredible pain and grief' for anyone who wants to be a parent. For decades, the lives of Wollongong couple Michael and Vickie Hughes have been defined by something that's missing. "Early in our relationship [in the 1980s], the doctors said you'll need help getting pregnant.

But when you're young, it really doesn't register," Mr Hughes tells ABC RN's Life Matters. When the couple was ready to conceive, Ms Hughes' health issues meant they turned to "a whole gamut of fertility treatments," including what Mr Hughes now calls "the devastating rollercoaster" of IVF. Alcohol use in children, and how parents can make a difference. Martin was 17 when he was first introduced to alcohol.

Key points: Research indicates parents have a strong influence over their children's choices when they become adolescentsLetting your child "sample" alcohol is likely to increase their chance of binge drinkingModelling good drinking behaviours at home is key "As a young person, there's the world of alcohol. Australian women with breast cancer are being denied reconstruction choices after mastectomies. Three women tell their stories. Deciding on what your chest will look like after a mastectomy is a deeply personal choice. For some women, it is taken out of their hands. When Heidi Arntzen looks for something nice to wear, there's a shop in the centre of town she likes to visit. She used to look for clothes to flatter her cleavage. But these days, she struggles to find clothes that fit well. No adjustments help. Warning: Some readers may find some of the following images confronting The mother of four, who works supporting families affected by suicide, is more accustomed to helping others than dealing with her own difficulties.

'Lying flat': The millennials quitting China's '996' work culture to live 'free of anxiety' 阅读中文版本 Two years ago, Li Chuang traded the bustling metropolis of Beijing for the tranquillity of an ancient monastery in central China. At the age of 32, the daily grind of working as an editor at a high-profile publishing house had taken its toll. Skincare products, and what the active ingredients in them actually mean. Border students fear 'missing out', as reports show increases in distress. Ashlee Thomas is in her final year of university studying to be a journalist. Key points: Some people can recall their near death experience. Dr Sam Parnia is trying to understand how. On December 12, 2012, Cassandra Scott was found floating face down in the water at Sydney's Coogee Beach.

She had no pulse but was resuscitated by a lifesaver and an emergency doctor who happened to be there at the time. 'Growing number' of teens sleeping with parents due to lockdown anxiety. Melbourne mum Mandy* can barely walk around her bedroom without bumping into the mattresses covering the floor. He, she, they: Why is it so important to get a person's preferred pronoun right? Stace Callaghan is transmasculine, non-binary and queer and says being misgendered is "distressing". Can 'lifestyle medicine' such as diet, exercise and mindfulness help treat chronic pain? Anu Kulkarni has been happily married for more than 30 years, has a beautiful daughter, a dog, and loves throwing parties. But, like 2.2 million Australians, she has osteoarthritis, where her knee and foot joints are painfully inflamed. Tasmanian prisoners sewing baby clothes for mums in need find 'sense of purpose'

Australians are three times more worried about climate change than COVID. A mental health crisis is looming. As we write this article, the Delta strain of COVID-19 is reminding the world the pandemic is far from over, with millions of Australians in lockdown and infection rates outpacing a global vaccination effort. Australia loathes Liz Cambage's confident demeanour, while the US embraces it. Liz Cambage is complex. Research on ageing finds meaningful activities are the key to keeping healthy and happy.

'Many women don't see themselves as beautiful': This Broome photographer wants to change that. Peter Leary enjoys a daily cold shower — research suggests it may benefit his long-term health. Memory palaces, mnemonics and music — how you can build a magnificent memory. Brisbane bodybuilding champion draws on Rohingya refugee camp survival for new beginning. Damage done by emotionally immature parents can have a long-term impact on children. Sam went sober for her mental health. She wasn't anticipating the impact it would have on dating. Are you grocery shopping on Sunday again? You're not alone as the COVID effect wears off.

'You lose people very quickly': Talking to friends or family who are down the anti-vaccine rabbit hole. Darwin young people who have lost friends to ice addiction take matters into their own hands. Teacher considers scarification to retain potentially deadly box jellyfish sting. Men's Shed pilot program sharpens kitchen skills — and appetites — for men who live alone.

Lauren uses apps to edit her pictures on social media. But she wants to set an example for her daughters. Digeridoo music healing program to bring calm to patients at Canberra's Centenary Hospital. As a psychologist, I've been inundated with emails about the treatment of women — but not the ones you might expect. How different approaches could help sexual assault survivors find justice. The Aussie Camino is a picturesque pilgrimage inspired by Australia's only saint, Mary MacKillop. Playing chess improves children's capacity to take calculated risks, study finds. Behind the scenes filming Magda Szubanski and Will Connolly, aka 'Egg Boy', for Australian Story. Unlikely partnership between Magda Szubanski and 'Egg Boy' helping to heal bushfire-hit communities. Do doorways make us forget why we got up? We test the science. What nine months of interviews told researchers about life in Australia after the pandemic. The wellbeing movement bringing tradies to tears.

Bespoke Sunshine Coast tailor gives new life to old memories. Sydney woman finally feels 'worthy of love' after keeping medical condition secret for more than two decades. Rockhampton's Hayley Doyle urges struggling students to seek support, stay in school. 'Happy boxes' provide women in remote communities with everyday essentials. Assistance dog is life-changing for Bundaberg teen Summer Farrelly, who lives with autism.

Dion Galea is the non-binary activist bringing trans awareness to the deaf community. Canberra man builds a mechanical watch by hand, after a deadly illness forced him to reinvent his life. How to treat sunburn pain, according to skin experts. In 2021 swimming in a backyard pool or open ocean is good for you and beach ecology too. Masking when you have autism can help you blend in, but you might not be doing yourself any favours. Identity can be productive and challenging, but it becomes dangerous when it shrinks our world - ABC News. Mick O'Dowd's body had an extreme response to an infection. Sepsis turned him into a quadruple amputee - ABC News. Why a good philosophical aphorism can be so powerful - ABC News. Exercise is proven to aid cancer treatments, so why don't patients have subsidised access to rehab? - ABC News.

Genome testing has changed Karla De Lautour's life and helped scientists understand her autoimmune condition - ABC News. Working from home during COVID-19 is changing what we're wearing in the office — and going back is like 'casual Friday every day' - ABC News. Survey reveals major shift in Australian drug use during coronavirus pandemic - ABC News. Chronic pain sufferer says spinal stimulator trial 'life-changing' after horrific car accident - ABC News.

NSW Police make arrest and issue $1,000 fines at banned Sydney rally protesting anti-transgender bill - ABC News. What is brain fog and what causes it? - ABC News. The daily grind led to a four-day week and a new approach to work-life balance - ABC News. The coronavirus pandemic is testing — and building — our resilience - ABC News. Afghanistan allows mothers' names on birth certificates in 'significant' milestone for women's rights - ABC News.

Just like Phillip Island's little penguins, we can get up and keep going in these uncertain times - ABC News. How a lifetime of adventure helped Erling Kagge harness the power of silence - ABC News. The pursuit of wellbeing (and why you can have it without happiness) - ABC News. Playtime for adults just as important as child's play - ABC News. Coronavirus anxiety in kids leads to big surge in interest in mindfulness app - ABC News. As coronavirus lockdowns bit, Aurora started drinking heavily. Now, she's formed a solution - ABC News. Type 1 diabetes causes widely misunderstood, sufferers say, with sugar shaming a 'trigger' - ABC News. Rewarding participation in junior sport doesn't make kids soft, it makes them come back - ABC News. Suffering from burnout at work? This is where it comes from and how to avoid it - ABC News. Why the chaos of 2020 is turning us all into philosophers - ABC News.

How young people are adapting to the challenges of living through a pandemic - ABC News. WHO says 'evidence emerging' of coronavirus spreading through the air - ABC News. No wonder coronavirus isolation is so tiring. All those extra, tiny decisions are taxing our brains - ABC News. Are you cut out for the quiet demands of a jigsaw puzzle, coronavirus isolation's favourite distraction? Claire Nelson almost died while hiking at Joshua Tree. Stranded for days, she had a life-changing epiphany.

How one man's personal relationship with suicide is being used as a force for good. Coronavirus has forced many to rely on Centrelink — just like those who have been called 'bludgers' in the past. From 'millionaire' to homeless and happy, Hammer's remarkable tale. How to focus when your mobile phone is distracting you from reading or writing. Jinwar, the Middle East's first feminist commune for Arab, Kurdish, and Yazidi victims of Islamic State. Menopause: Half of us go through it, but how much do we know about it before it hits?

Four prominent Australian women on feminism, sexism and the future. Endometriosis diagnosis taking years as women given outdated advice when seeking treatment. Chris sorted through the 'blood and gore' on social media. Now he's suing Facebook over PTSD. LGBTIQ+ teens find a place to belong as Queer Formal helps thousands. Dove music therapy program brings joy to the dying.

Jinn, golems, and pretas: What supernatural beings in religion can teach us about ourselves. Walkabout Barber brings fresh styles and mental health first aid to the country. Jann Stuckey resigns as Currumbin MP as she reveals mental health battle.