HORSHAM man Aaron Schultz has continued a series of men’s well-being workshops in Horsham, where people were encouraged to discuss issues affecting their daily lives.
Mr Schultz started a question-and-answer style workshop on Tuesday evening to discuss anxiety. He said it was rare for people to live in the present moment.
“Our mind is conditioned to be in anticipation, which is largely a form of anxiety, or in memory, a form of depression,” he said.
“In modern life, we’ve lost being self-aware and it’s difficult to gain a consistent, calm mental state.”
For Mr Schultz, being self-aware means understanding whether opportunities will bring positive or negative outcomes. He said people could identify the worth of opportunities through daily decisions.
“We can choose to use money to purchase a house that is achievable rather than put us in financial stress,” he said. “For a young person studying, they could choose to go down a pathway that is achievable rather than be constantly stressed.”
When faced with anxiety and depression, Mr Schultz said one reaction had been to solve it with a prescription.
“A lot of people take chemical enhancements to deal with something manageable,” he said.
He said developing daily practices allowed people to recognise emotions and return to a grounded state.
“Go into your day with a positive mindset, which filters throughout the day. Having something in your everyday life that gives you satisfaction and joy is key,” he said. “In the morning, an average person goes straight for a stimulant like coffee which never allows people to reach a calm state of mind.”
He said fear, jobs, relationships and guilt created emotions that felt uncontrollable. He said work and life balance could lead to a blurred visions of the future and guilt created a fight or flight mode.
“The ability to observe that rather than jump onto a negative emotion and take you away,” he said. “Having practices in your life as a core focus can lead you back to that calm mental state.”
He said people needed to show kindness, compassion and gratefulness to themselves to become self-aware and share experiences more openly.
Mr Schultz said judgement was one of the biggest issues in regional communities. He encouraged more people to attend the men’s well-being workshops at WestSide Tabaret in the future.
“I hope people can understand that it is okay to come talk to a group about this,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if your mates find out. You are doing this for yourself and if they are supportive mates, then they will be right behind you.”