From her days on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette to her current role as half of the Rove and Sam radio show, Sam Frost has become something of a nation favourite.
It’s not just because we were all so invested in her ‘journey’ to find love again (FYI she’s still very much in the honeymoon phase with Sasha Mielczarek) but also because of her authenticity. From interviews to Instagram, Frost is passionate about keeping it real and putting her ‘fame’ to good use by raising awareness of important issues; from her role as Priceline ambassador for the Stroke Foundation’s Australia’s Biggest Blood Pressure Check campaign as well as mental health advocacy.
She tells us how she deals when she’s having a poor mental health day.
1. Firstly, admit that you’re feeling a bit wobbly mental health-wise, and that’s okay.
“I’ll invite my girlfriends, like Sarah, over and even just say to them, ‘I’m not having a great day today’ and we’ll just sit and watch TV. Sometimes we don’t even talk about it. Sometimes it’s just easier to hang out and have a bit of a laugh because if you don’t feel like leaving the house you can invite your girlfriends over and forget about everything else on the outside.
“Going home and seeing my family, even just trying to find the energy to see your family and spend your time with good, quality people is good for me. I just think about how I’m going to feel during and after I’ve spent time with these people. It’s going to be fantastic and I’m going to laugh a lot and feel like myself again.”
2. Make contact with the people who make you feel good.
“I surround myself with good people. Being in the media and especially when I first started my job in radio, you feel like people are sitting there wanting you to fail. It’s hard to find the strength to say ‘I am worthy of this job’. That was an unpleasant period of my life, and you just surround yourself with people who believe in you and think you’re amazing. People who bring out a positive side of your personality.”
3. Have your support network on speed dial.
“I can always go to Sasha, he’s honestly one of the most supportive, encouraging, beautiful men I’ve met in my life. He is the number one person I can talk to and he’s so encouraging, I can’t stress that enough. So he’s always amazing. But we do live apart and he’s a few hours away so if it’s not him, it’s my sister. She knows me back and front and knows the patterns of my behaviour, when I’m up and when I’m enthusiastic and excited, and she also knows when I might be going through a bit of a tough time.
Watch: The phrase that can turn your anxiety on its head. Post continues after video.
“She reads my mind. She might just look at me and be like ‘Are you okay?’ and I haven’t said anything to her or done anything differently, and I’ll be like ‘Yeah, I’m going through a bit of a toughy at the moment’. She’s so supportive and sends me video messages of my little niece being adorable, and just knows the right things to say and she’s incredible.
“I also have girlfriends at home in Melbourne but again they’re not as easily accessible living in a different state, so it’s a bit tricky and I think that’s another reason why you feel a bit more lonely if you don’t live around people that you love the most. But my family are the best.” (Post continues after gallery.)
4. Be aware of the signs that a bad mental health day could be looming.
“When your friends invite you out to dinner or any social activity, and you think of 101 excuses of why you don’t want to go, even though you love your friends and you know you’ll have a great time, but you’re at home thinking ‘How do I get out of this I don’t want to go, why can’t I just take my makeup off and go to sleep’. Wanting to sleep all the time too is a common one, that’s one of the things that I think you feel like you might be falling into a dark trap.”
5. Fight the urge to go through it alone for fear of judgement.
“My mum had mental health issues so it’s something I’m conscious of when I fall into patterns of depression and anxiety. We all have bad days and sometimes bad periods of our lives and I think that during those times you feel so lonely and isolated and you don’t want to talk to anyone. I think one of the biggest things is you don’t want to tell people, even those closest to you, because you don’t want people to think you’re just saying it to get attention or you’re just playing victim.
“Sometimes people are so judgmental and you feel like you can’t say ‘Hey, I’m not doing okay’. The reason I talk about it and shine a light on it is that the more people find out about it, they realise it’s not just them.
If you’re going through a tough time, speak to your GP or get more information from one of these organisations. Post continues after gallery.
“I read a great anecdote the other day that basically said if someone breaks their leg, they go to the doctor and get crutches, and people can physically see that’s why you aren’t able to come out on the weekends or get out of your bed. And it’s so hidden with mental illness because you can’t physically see it so people don’t quite understand when you say ‘I don’t want to get out of bed’ and ‘I don’t want to go out’. You just want to be alone and people don’t understand why and just think ‘Oh, just get up’ but you wouldn’t say that to someone with two broken legs.”
6. Cut out friends who don’t support you.
“If you have friends who are judgmental and negative and superficial, if you have friends who you walk away from and don’t feel great about yourself, then don’t have that friend in your life.”
7. Go out of your way to support other people having a hard time.
“It’s tough, and it’s hard to help someone who doesn’t want to help themselves. You get frustrated and angry, but you can’t be aggressive towards them ’cause it’s not fair.
Frost and Mielczarek are ambassadors for the initiative. Image: Supplied.
"One of the key things is to be patient and supportive and encouraging because it’s very easy to get angry and frustrated. But in saying that you are allowed to get frustrated, because it’s hard, it’s definitely not easy. My biggest advice is to be patient and continue to be supportive and encouraging because when they get through it - and they will - your relationship will be so much closer because of the unconditional love."
How do you deal with bad mental health days?