Peter Frost has 40 years of experience in clinical therapy.
He will be in Mosgiel next month for a four-week program on health and well-being management.
Frost said the course introduced the idea of hierarchies in prioritizing work, recreation and sleep.
“We tend to put work at the top of our list, followed by recreation and, if possible, sleep.
“We put it back in front.”
He said the hierarchy should be reversed and sleep should be at the top of the list.
Frost helped resolve the political instability in Sierra Leone by moderating talks between national leaders and working with the United Nations.
His program ‘Time to Live’ is a collaborative effort between Peter Strang, former Director of Student Health at the University of Otago, Jack van der Meer, Associate Professor of Education, and Dr Brian Coots and Dr Fraser Jopson, Lecturers of the Department of Surveying. Developed with
More than 30 years ago, Frost was asked by a university to offer a program to professional students in training to become nurses, doctors and surveyors.
These occupations typically face high stress situations and high turnover, he said.
However, he found the course to be relevant to most people.
“Work was one aspect of that, but we were interested in asking, ‘Is this improving my relationships, how are I getting along with my kids, how is my general health? Are you asleep?”
He said the course detailed where stress comes from, the biological effects of stress on the body, and what can be done about it.
Humanity is under unprecedented pressure due to modern lifestyle technologies such as mobile phones.
“[In the past]if in danger, must either flee from predators or chase an antelope.
“We can use energy, so it’s okay.
“But if [the pressure was coming from] your phone, then? “
The autoimmune system could not keep up with the constant stressors created by previously nonexistent technology, and people overcompensated with substance abuse to keep up, he said.
He said embarrassing trends in alcohol, marijuana and, more recently, methamphetamine abuse compensated for that.
The free course is open to all and will run from 7pm to 9pm at the Salvation Army Building on Lanark Street for four weeks starting September 13th.