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The 10 Habits of Mentally Healthy Men - #7 Be Challenged

Gregg Harris from Adelaide in South Australia has walked 100kms for men’s mental health this month. According to his @Gtrain1833 Twitter feed, it’s been pretty gruelling.

Our 7th habit of mentally healthy men is to Be Challenged.

When we polled men in the lead up to World Mental Health Day 2020 (October 10), 92% agreed that setting goals, learning new skills or challenging themselves, helped them stay mentally healthy.

Commented one recipient, “I have just become a Rottnest Island Volunteer Guide. This involved a very professional training program. I do two days per month on different tours, which require preparation.”

“Lifelong learning is vital for keeping your mind mentally strong as you get older,” stated another.

“Completing a PhD at 76 gave me a big great sense of achievement and a feeling of satisfaction.”


Exercise goals tick many boxes. For example, Australian Men’s Health Forum CEO Glen Poole recently completed his first triathlon in Agnes Waters, Queensland, to celebrate his 51st birthday and to also raise money for men’s health (see Habit #6 Be a Legend).

“I did it, I completed my 51st birthday challenge and did my first triathlon - 20k bike, 5k run and a shortened swim in the BIGGEST, BADDEST, WAVES I’ve ever tackled,” announced Glen, who aims to keep his challenges going throughout his 50s and beyond in the name of men’s health …. and his own.

Marathon Man Glen Poole and friends at Agnes Waters, Queensland. 

There are no shortage of ways to be challenged. The Black Dog Institute invites people to take part in One Foot Forward throughout October during Mental Health Month, promising that all funds raised will help BDI develop resources for the people who need them most. SIGN UP.

The team at Beyond the Barbell are attacking 42 workouts back-to-back this month to raise awareness for men’s mental health “and the 42 men who tragically lose their lives to suicide each week in Australia.”

Visit Beyond the Barbell’s Facebook page to find out more about these workouts and how you can get involved.

Money raised will go to Movember, who describe themselves as “a community of rockstars raising money, making a difference in mental health & suicide prevention, prostate cancer and testicular cancer.”

Movember, most famous for encouraging blokes to grow a Mo in November, has other fund-raising ideas for people to challenge themselves and make a contribution to the community. Run or walk 60km over November, host a Mo-ment or ‘Mo Your Own Way’ and establish your own challenge.

Which could be:

  • Kick a habit

  • Learn a new skill

  • Read one book a week (or more)

  • Set yourself a physical challenge

  • Set a new goal

  • Travel to a new place

  • Talk to a stranger

  • Cook something different

  • Pick a charity and raise money


Read the 10 Habits of Mentally Healthy Men

  1. Be Healthy
  2. Be Active
  3. Be Connected
  4. Be Happy
  5. Be Outdoors
  6. Be A Legend
  7. Be Challenged
  8. Be Strong
  9. Be Resilient
  10. Be Supported


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