Summer survival kit

In this summer survival kit you’ll find everything you need to know, from tips for getting through the holidays to suggestions for curing boredom. Most importantly, be kind to yourself and remember there’s always someone to talk to if you need help.

This might help if:

  • You're bored over the summer
  • You're worried about dealing with Christmas stress
  • You're heading to a summer festival
teenage couple smiling sitting on bench by the water

Who might you be able to talk to if you need to?

  • A friend
  • Relative
  • Parent/guardian
  • Sibling
  • Neighbour
  • Counsellor/Psychologist
  • Kids Helpline (1800 55 1800),  or you can do email or web counselling with Kids Helpline
  • Lifeline (13 11 44)

Getting through the holidays

The holiday season can be tough for a lot of reasons and can bring up some issues that are challenging to manage. So how are you supposed to get through it? You might want to check out the following fact sheets:

I know Christmas at my house is often a bit stressful (everyone is frantically cooking, trying to get presents done, sending cards, putting up decorations!) - ways for managing this stress can include:

  • Write a list of things you need to get done (be as specific as possible).
  • Prioritise (choose the most important things to do first).
  • Say 'no' if someone asks too much of you or you feel overwhelmed.
  • Sometimes 'agree to disagree'.
  • Start getting involved early - this means you have more of a chance to say what you want and would like to do for Christmas.
  • Know what annoys you - I know sometimes when I'm with my family I think they're purposely trying to push my buttons but if I'm able to recognise what it is that annoys me about them I can respond differently.
  • If you're feeling overwhelmed, tell someone.
  • Discuss what Christmas might mean (or not mean in) in your family and work around this.
  • Offer to help in a way that you might be able to manage.
  • Try to be patient and have a sense of humour if your family starts telling the same stories they tell every year. 
If you're going through a tough time or need a distraction you could:  

  • Ring a friend/relative for a chat.
  • Check out the fact sheets and stories on
  • Write down some short, medium and long term goals. Check out the 'How to set goals' fact sheet for tips.
  • Go for a walk/exercise in moderation (maybe in a team).
  • Go for a swim or surf
  • Read a book
  • Write some of your thoughts down.
  • Listen to music
  • Write some poetry
  • Have a cold or hot shower.

What to do if you're bored?

Some suggestions:

  • Take your camera out on a day adventure and see what photos you end up with or take a photo and share it on the forums.
  • Check out your local art gallery (sometimes they have some interesting stuff in the summer).
  • Go to a different cinema from the one you usually go to or see/rent a movie that you wouldn't normally see.
  • Organise a games night for you and your friends and ask everyone to bring their favourite game and a plate of food.
  • Start reading a new book that you've been wanting to read for ages.

What else can I do?

- Set some short term (so in the next few weeks), medium term (in 3-6months) and long term goals (in a year) - there are some fact sheets on setting goals on for tips

- Create a 'green box' or positive box with things that make you feel good or help you through a tough time - check out this story about creating a 'green box' on Reach Out - anyone can have one of these!

- Organise daily activities - sometimes if you're feeling crap or are on holidays it's easy to lose motivation to do 'life' things - having some activities you can do for each day can help you to keep doing things.

Need help right now?

  • Check out the Emergency help section
  • Call the Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800 (free call from landlines and mobiles).
  • Call Lifeline on 13 11 44 (cost of a local call from a landline or free from a mobile).
  • If you are in immediate danger get to your nearest hospital now or call '000'.

Be kind to yourself 

All too often we place expectations on ourselves that we would never place on others - so perhaps make a pact with yourself to give yourself a break this summer, especially since Christmas and New Year is a time when things can get tough. The crew wishes you all a very Merry Festive season and a Happy New Year - and we look forward to seeing you back on in the new year! 

Thanks to all Community members and DaniS for putting together this Summer survival kit!

What can I do now?

Last reviewed: 25 January, 2016
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