by Kristen Ferguson

The Wellbeing Zone

Tiaki koe me etahi atu ~ Take care of yourself and others.

School is out, the kids are excited and even though we think it's time to wind down and relax, the summer holidays can prove to be very tiring, stressful and overwhelming and busy for children and their whānau.

Please remember to continue using the Zones of Regulation language around your home - discussing what zone their in, what their body feels like in that zone, helping them choose a strategy (sensory? calming? thinking?) to work through that zone and get to the green zone. Have a look through previous "The Wellbeing Zone" newsletter articles for a refresher on ideas. 

Over the holidays, be mindful of how to keep your mind and body healthy. Here are some tips to help you make the best out of the holiday season (these are great for adults AND kids!)

1. Connect, me whakawhanaunga
Make some time in your day to connect with nature; stretch your legs outside or bring the outside in. Go barefoot and feel the grass or sand between your toes, go for a swim in the sun, find a photo of the natural world and make it your screen saver, or adopt a potted plant. Reach out to people you know – Skype them, call or Facebook them, or meet face to face.

2. Give, tukua
 Give the gift of time by offering to help with someone’s garden, babysit or make a gift from natural materials. There are also some little ways to give while rushing around – give a smile to a stranger or a compliment to someone, or donate some old toys, books or clothes to someone who might need some kindness

3. Take notice, me aro tonu
A good antidote is to take some time to learn more about what your body is telling you. If you’re feeling overwhelmed and exhausted – pause, breath in, breath out. Take notice of the pohutukawa and rata flowers changing, the night sky, or go somewhere you’ve always been meaning to visit in your local area. 

4. Keep learning, me ako tonu

There’s always something new to learn, especially when you’re interacting with nature. Read up on what fruit and veggies are in season, or learn about what natural resources you have in your backyard. Share stories with your family, go on a bush walk, learn about the natural environment from your tablet or local library, or take a trip to the zoo or botanical gardens.

5. Be active, me kori tonu

Getting outside and exercising is good for your overall health and wellbeing! Have a lunch break outside, take a walk with a friend in a park, or design a treasure hunt for your friends and family (see above!). There are ways to bring activity into all you do, by using the stairs instead of the elevator, getting off the bus one stop earlier, or catching up with a friend for a walk instead of going to a cafe. 

When the kids are "bored" - try suggesting some of these activities!

1. Mindfulness colouring (there are heaps online - just "Google it"!)

2. Story Yoga (search on Youtube and you'll spot them straight away!)

3. Scavenger Hunts - print them off and away they go!

4. Baking - it's fun, educational AND you get a sweet treat in the end!

Stay safe, keep healthy, have fun and we will see you in 2023!

                 ~ Happy Holidays! ~ nga hararei koa  ~