Mental Wellbeing Tips for surviving the Rugby World Cup

With next week being Mental Health week, a leading mental wellbeing specialist, Barry Taylor, has issued some mental wellbeing strategies for surviving the Rugby World Cup.


Keeping your energy up is important during this time. The following foods are recommended for watching the game

During the match

Minties, Macintosh Toffees, Pineapple Lumps and Jaffas are always a good energy source. The tried and true Reduced Cream and Maggi Onion Soup dip with potato chips (corn chips for the health conscious) has been proven to increase a feeling of contentment and satisfaction. Saveloys or cheerios with Watties tomato sauce (none of that Heinz stuff) is also essential food intake along with potato top party pies.

Half Time

Sustenance at half time is necessary to get through the second half. South Islanders should partake in authentic toasted cheese rolls. Cheese and onion and cheese and pineapple fillings of course. North Islanders should have cheese on toast with ham, bacon or tinned spaghetti. A good strong pot of tea should also be available.


With all the cheering and shouting at the referee, liquid intake is important. There is no specific recommendations of the types of liquid but an end-of-game celebratory light Shandy is perfectly fine. As with all things moderation is the key.


Couch sitting should be interrupted with some short exercises. A spontaneous Mexican wave around the lounge or a group Macarena is always good for blood circulation. Line dancing however should not be encouraged


It is important not to repress feelings, although do remember referees and captains are human as are goal kickers. And remember never take your frustrations out on the tv screen.


With some games being later in the evening, sleep is essential. A power nap before the game is always useful. Think ahead around the excuse you will have to give for being late into work but blaming it on Wellington buses has limited impact, especially if you don’t live in Wellington.


Be proud of the All Blacks but recognise the skills and talent of the other teams, especially those coached by Kiwis. Stand and sing out loud our national anthem in both Te Reo and English.


Be considerate of the noise from shouting and cheering. A visit by the council noise control officer can dampen your spirits. Do remember just because you shout really loud at the TV doesn’t necessarily mean the ref can hear it in Japan. Remember to protect your voice, its several weeks before the Cup Final.


Should the highly unlikely loss of a game by the All Blacks occur stay calm and pass the chips and dip. Reach out to your mates and give them a supportive hug. Sobbing into your All Black scarf is helpful for cathartic release. After-match post-mortems have their role but should limited to just 24 hours. Be considerate of others, remember they are grieving too. Avoid at all costs re-traumatisation by watching the reruns of the game. And the most important thing to remember is that you are not alone. The nation grieves with you.

Otherwise enjoy the games, take pride in the ups and down and the close finishes. Remember the last-five minutes-stress syndrome is not bad for your health, although those with a heart condition should consult their doctor before game.

To non followers of the All Black, remember denial is futile.

Advice to Australians

Just don’t watch the Wallabies play. Constant exposure to disappointment can lead to depression and possible despair.

Please share this important mental health message to whānau, work colleagues and friends. Enjoy the next week.

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