DID you know April has been Stress Awareness Month?
I often get asked how I cope with the stress of cancer. Well, I’ve worked out a life where cancer doesn’t rule it. Of course, I get “scanxiety” when my scan times come around but, in between, I am OK.
When things are tough, I head outdoors. I know I bang on about cold-water swimming but it really helps my mood.
I have become good at saying no to stuff, putting what I need ahead of what others expect. I ask myself what’s the worst that would happen if I don’t go to an event and the answer is usually not life-threatening.
A good night’s sleep helps me stay stress-free – I love a delicious eight hours.
Recently, I have been more conscious of how social media affects my mood. It’s good to set boundaries.
Blurt Foundation, a social enterprise helping those with depression, have tips for how to stay happy in our digital era . . .
- Use your phone’s silent mode. Blurt say “utilising this mode allows us to choose when we check our phone or laptop, rather than have a ‘ping’ grab our attention” – and I agree. Otherwise, my heart races when I hear my phone.
- Turn off notifications. Do you need to know when someone has “liked” one of your Instagram posts? Probably not.
- Curate your digital timeline. Only follow people online that make you feel good or inspired, or make you laugh.
- Hide your phone. For me this is helpful because, as soon as I see my phone, I feel the need to pick it up.
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- Buy a watch. The less we rely on our phones, the less we will look at them and get drawn in by their mighty pull.
- Set expectations. We expect replies to texts immediately. Remember, when we relied on letters they took longer.
- Turn everything off at night. I set my phone to flight mode and lay it far from my bed so it doesn’t disturb me.
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