Life gets busy and sometimes chaotic as everyone juggles with work, family, studies and other commitments. It is easy to get pre-occupied with daily struggles without taking time out to appreciate life. These are the comments of Fiji National University (FNU) Counsellor Varsha Naidu who believes it is important for everyone to occasionally pause, conduct a ‘reality check’ and enjoy life.
“We have introduced ‘Thankful Thursday’ initiative which provides students and staff with a platform to express their gratitude and appreciating the goodness in life. It’s good for one’s mental health,” said Naidu.
“Having a positive mind produces positive energy and it radiates others around you. We know that life is stressful and we have to ensure that we manage ourselves by doing things that make us happy as well as keeps us healthy.”
“Gratitude and thankfulness are strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness and this is the message we are amplifying to students and staff,” said Naidu.
Several initiatives such as Zumba and Cardio activities held during lunch hour on Wednesday’s around the campuses has been introduced at FNU to keep staff active.
Further to this, FNU libraries have dedicated a section for a Positivity Tree activity, where the students and staff write and share positive quotes and words.
“Every day we have staff and students who would write why they are grateful to have what they have in life,” said the FNU Counsellor.
Bachelor of Commerce in Human Resources Management/Industrial Relations and Marketing student Ashiyaana Ali is one of the many students who has been trying to inspire her peers through the Positivity Tree project.
“Through this campaign, I feel happier and I’m positive just by reading the different messages placed on the Positivity Tree daily,” Ali stated.
James Koroitubuna, a third-year Bachelor of Law student and his colleagues are also actively involved in the awareness campaign.
“Creating the Positivity Tree and advocating students about the mental health month make us feel very much part of this whole activity,” expressed Koroitubuna.
“I have noticed that students who are actively engaged in this program are now able to express themselves better. I have seen most of them share their life-experiences by placing notes on the Positivity Tree or through social media.”
FNU’s Mental Health Awareness month will culminate with the World Mental Health Day on 8 October.