Paul and Tami Roos’ top tips for getting through a rough patch

It’s been an extremely challenging year for many of us, but these strategies should make life easier to manage.

AFL legend Paul Roos and wife Tami, an author and meditation expert, share their six top tips for staying strong through adversity.

1. Control what you can

Life is still uncertain thanks to COVID-19, particularly in Victoria, says Paul.

But the former AFL coach suggests pinpointing what’s within your control. “

What’s the choice that you can make today that has no bearing on anything other than you?” he says.

It can be as simple as choosing what time you get out of bed, or how you exercise.

“I can choose to go for a run, I can choose to meditate, I can choose to go for a bike ride,” he says.

Paul recommends sticking to a routine, even while working from home. So avoid the temptation to sleep in or stay in your PJs all day.

2. Spring into the new season

Tami says spring is a great time to make some positive changes, such as ditching the dark clothes and popping on some mood-boosting colour.

A spring clean may be in order, and energy levels should start to improve.

“With that, I can’t stress enough that you really do need to move, because if you don’t you will get frustrated,” says Tami.

So break out the skipping rope, take that online yoga class, go for a walk or work your core.

3. Be mindful and meditate

When we reach for a glass of wine, scroll through our phones or binge watch TV shows, we are usually trying to switch off our brains but just don’t know how, says Tami.

Instead, she recommends a short breath awareness exercise or meditation.

“In my mind, meditation is the number one missing link to our health and wellbeing,” she says.

During his AFL coaching days, Paul would meditate before each game, and often before meetings.

“For me, the meditating on game day was a non-negotiable. I knew I had to let a lot of the emotion of the game wash through me, not sit with me,” he says.

“I’d come out of the meditation and I’d have real clarity around what I wanted to talk to the players about.”

4. Find your purpose

Got more downtime? That’s a perfect opportunity to reflect on what you like and what you don’t – perhaps while journalling or taking a stroll, says Tami.

Ask yourself: What’s my passion, what fires me up?

“In order for us to really live the life we want to lead, it actually really helps if we do know what we’re striving towards,” says Tami.

5. Expect the unexpected

“We have an expectation that life is supposed to go X, Y, Z and it doesn’t – and then what happens to us is it throws us into a tailspin, maybe we get anxiety or feel like we’re getting depressed, we’re really flat, we’re really low,” say Tami.

“But we need to understand to a certain extent that life is in a constant state of flux, so what happens today will be different tomorrow and the day after that will be different again,” she says. “It’s not going to stay like this forever.”

6. Recognise the power of thoughts and words

Words and thoughts have more power than we realise, says Tami.

“If I’m having more positive thoughts, I’ll draw more positive emotions and experiences to me,” she says.

“If I’m having negative thoughts, I’m going to do the exact same thing as well.”

That’s not to say that people aren’t entitled to feel angry, sad, frustrated or scared.

“What I’m saying though is, just be mindful. If you start going down this hole, are you watching too much news, are you just ingesting negative after negative after negative?” says Tami.

Catch more from Paul and Tami Roos in our six-part series on The House of Wellness TV show.

Written by Larissa Ham.