Former cricketer conquers personal Everest

By Harata Brown

As Men's Health Week kicks off, Te Kāea delves into former Black Caps player Adam Parore's personal struggles to overcome stress. It's the first time the cricket star turned business leader has opened up about his stress issues in the hope that more men seek expert advice.

Parore has conquered Mt Everest and reached the pinnacle of cricket in NZ, but he admits that dealing with stress was harder to overcome.

"Nobody knew. On the surface, it was all looking pretty good, underneath it wasn't looking right. Probably about 12 months ago, I bombed out and it's been a slow steady climb back." 

Mr. Parore already leads a demanding role as the Director of Index Group. After going through litigation, the father of two says he got to a point where he couldn't sleep at night.

"I found the stress was probably a more difficult thing for me to deal with. It sort of snuck up on me over a number of years, from some litigation I was involved in predominately. (I was very slow to recognise the symptoms of it until I couldn't sleep anymore and I got into a phase of waking up, actually it was exactly 2:38 every morning. And then being awake all night and worrying about outcomes around litigation, family and business stuff."

By chance, the former NZ wicketkeeper says he found a solution. Mr Parore sought expert health advice, cut back on alcohol and sugar, and began to delegate responsibilities to others at work and at home. 

"I think that sort of stuff (stress is pretty typical of NZ men, were there is this expectation that you should just be able to just do everything for everybody. I got to the point where it just got too much. And you know I just couldn't keep going. And the lesson that I've learnt is that if you can't look after yourself then it's pretty hard to look after your family and your mates."   

As an ambassador for Men's Health week, Mr. Parore is encouraging men to take the online NZ Men's Health week survey to find out more about their general health.