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mental health

By Rachel O Neill

I was first diagnosed with generalised anxiety disorder when I was 19 but really I’d been suffering from it for as long as I could remember. I thought it was normal to get obsessed with studying for exams and to cry if I got 85 out of 100 instead of 90. I thought it was completely normal to have your brain scream things at you that you would never dream of saying to another person. I thought it was normal to be sad all the time. In reality, getting my diagnosis was my first step to admitting that my normality wasn’t everyone else's.

I was prescribed antidepressants and started seeing a therapist. I was of the belief that I could cure myself by talking to someone and taking my pills. I didn’t understand that anxiety and depression need to be managed rather than cured. So I took myself out of therapy and weaned myself off my meds, convinced that I was fine. I would go on to have a breakdown a year later and would go back to therapy for nearly 15 months.

I’m very open about my struggles and my problems but that doesn’t make it easy to tell people about them. You don’t want to appear weak or vulnerable and most of all, you don’t want to be treated differently to anyone else. You just want to be seen as a colleague that works hard and does their best regardless. 

Telling my manager about my problems was hard. It’s something you have to prepare for. You rehearse in your head what you’ll say and how they might react. In reality, I had nothing to worry about. My manager was very understanding about my problems and has been incredibly supportive in managing workloads when I need it.

Our work lives are more hectic than they used to be. Ever-changing deadlines, longer commutes and increased pressure means that employees can often feel like they have nobody to talk to. I wanted to do something about it and was lucky enough to be  given the opportunity to help The Institute of Advertising Practitioners in Ireland (IAPI) and The Advertising Benevolent Society (TABS) launch SMASH, a campaign around their new employee assistance programme.

The programme which is run by Spectrum and offers 24/7 support for a range of different issues including mental health support, financial advice, legal advice and career advice. 

 SMASH is the first wellbeing programme of its kind for the advertising industry in Ireland and the programme will provide a variety of mental health supports and practical services, exclusively to IAPI’s two thousand members. The SMASH programme is funded by TABS, The Advertising Benevolent Society.

IAPI members, through the SMASH programme, will be able to avail of six professional consultation sessions on eight different concerns. The programme of up to 48 professional consultations will cover financial, legal, consumer, health, parenting and career advice as well as mediation and life coaching.

It’s a really good programme and I’m so proud to be involved in the launch because I believe that every employee should have access to it. 

More and more of us are taking days off work for mental health reasons. We don’t always say it’s mental health because there is still a stigma attached to taking time off for it. But with an EAP like Spectrum available, we can feel more comfortable in recognising and tackling our problems before they turn into a major crisis.

For those of us like me, who have been managing their conditions for longer, it’s comforting to know that there is a resource there for you if you need it. 

My mental health problems haven’t gone away. They are conditions that I have to manage closely. I’ve been on antidepressants for the last 18 months and I see a therapist regularly too. Even in doing all that, I can still struggle to get out of bed or to see my friends regularly, making my head a lonely place to be.

That being said, I’m optimistic that things always have the potential to get better and being able to share my story with my colleagues has shown that. Hopefully with a little more talk and a lot more action, more organisations will follow in IAPI’s footsteps and support their employees as much as they can.

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It has long been claimed that flowers have a therapeutic effect on those who surround themselves with them, but science had yet to truly back it up.

Research conducted by the American Society For Horticulture Science has recently revealed that fresh flowers can have the ability to ease feelings of anxiety, and even physical pain. 

The study evaluated whether or not plants have an influence on surgical patients, and we're pretty surprised by these results. 90 participants were split into rooms with plants or without, and those with foliage feelings have different outcomes.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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According to the research, those who were exposed to flowers had lower heart rates and blood pressure, decreased ratings of fatigue, anxiety and pain, and harboured more positive feelings and higher satisfaction about their rooms.

It's now suggested that flowers should be 'complementary medicine' for recovering patients. It's time to click your fingers and insist that a crowd of men throw a bouquet at you every few minutes…for health reasons.

Flowers are often the go-to gift for celebrating milestones, or for offering messages of hope or condolences. Good old science has just given us the opportunity to buy our own blooms, for self-care.

According to a study published in Complementary Therapies In Medicine, bouquets of flowers can reduce our stress levels.

The researchers gave college-age women a fresh vase of roses for their accommodation, and the subjects felt more relaxed than they did before. Whether it's psycho-somatic, or true therapy, it seems to work.

It seems like an easy breezy way to experience multiple health benefits while keeping your home aesthetically lush. Apparently, indoor plants and gardening come with health advantages similar to gym workouts.

We like this, we like this A LOT.

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Whether it's your best friend, a close family member or your favourite hairdresser, there's nothing like a good chat to lift your spirits and as it turns out, those bonds could have a huge effect on our mental and physical health.

According to The Irish Independent, a number of studies carried out over the past 40 years have indicated that good social relationships may contribute to a reduction in abdominal obesity, better lung function and even a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease.

Some researchers even claim that our relationships could be more important than diet and exercise when it comes to overall health and wellbeing.

A 2010 study carried out at Brigham Young University found that having a good network of friends and family members could improve a person's odds of survival by up to 50 per cent.

Participants were asked a number of questions about their social lives, including the quality of relationships with friends, family, partners and colleagues.

Based on their answers, the women were then divided into three groups – 'socially isolated', 'moderately integrated' and 'socially integrated'.

20 years later, researchers checked in with the participants and found that the 'socially integrated' women were significantly less likely to have passed away from their battle with breast cancer than those who were deemed 'socially isolated'.

The risk of reoccurrence was also greatly reduced in women who said they has a quality network of friends. 

Head researcher, Candyce H Kroenke, said: "It is well established that women who have more social ties generally, including those with breast cancer, have a lower risk of death overall."

"Our findings demonstrate the beneficial influence of women's social ties on breast cancer, including recurrence and breast cancer death."

What's more, an earlier study carried out by the same team, found that laughing and enjoying quality time with friends could help patients deal with some of the physical symptoms of cancer.  

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No matter how much you might love your job, there are few among us who don't find ourselves struggling against those classic Sunday Night Blues as Monday morning creeps ever closer.

And such is the extent of our weekly woe, many of us fail to realise the true potential of a well-spent Sunday evening.

Relaxing and unwinding before diving back into the working week is essential, but so too is putting a little prep and planning into ensuring a successful week ahead.

From brisk walks and at-home manicures to goal checklists, reclaiming your Sunday with our simple P plan has never been so easy.

Press pause

There comes a point on Sunday evening when you have to accept that the weekend is coming to an end, and it's time to look ahead and stop clinging to the last vestige of the previous days' festivities.

While it sounds harsh, there is no point in dragging your Sunday Fear into Monday morning because you were unable to draw a line under your days off.

Telling yourself you're simply pressing pause on your down-time until next weekend is a simple way to focus your mind.

Plan your week

Much of the anxiety brought about by Sunday night stems from concern over commitments and responsibilities awaiting us in the week ahead.

Take 30 minutes to sit down and consider the next five days, so you have a clear idea of what is expected from you.

It sounds like a bummer to consider work-related events during time-off, but it really helps to alleviate stress.

Pamper yourself

After you've accepted the fact that work is looming, and dedicated some time to considering the week ahead, it's time to focus on treating yo'self!

Why not indulge your hands with an at-home manicure from Sally Hansen which guarantees a salon finish without the price tag? With an incredible array of products which protect, condition and strengthen your nails, Sally Hansen provides you with all the tools need for a high-quality treatment from the comfort of your own home.

Taking the time to pamper yourself on a Sunday evening is a guaranteed way to relax, and ease yourself into the next five days.

Pound the streets

It's rare you'll return from a brisk walk and not feel much better than when you left.

Shake off the cobwebs from the weekend's excesses by grabbing your runners and going for a 30 minute walk around your neighbourhood.

Not only will it help you sleep better (something that is absolutely vital on a Sunday night), but it will help clear your head if your planning hasn't quite done the job!

Prepare your outfit

A very simple way to rid yourself of Sunday night fear is to prepare an outfit (from underwear to accessories) for the following morning.

Take the time to iron your clothes, and tidy out your handbag so your Monday morning doesn't involve frantically rooting through your laundry bin or fighting your way through mountains of receipts in search of your Leap Card.

Covering the little things makes Monday mornings so much more doable.

Praise and preach

Now is the time to truly relax… because it is still the weekend, after all!

Praise yourself for getting ahead of the game by tending to vital tasks, give props to yourself for taking the time to treat yourself, and remind your friends to do the same by getting straight on WhatsApp and preaching the good word!

 

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Gemma Atkinson’s latest post has reminded us of how powerful our bodies are.

The new mum shared three shots, one taken during her pregnancy, one taken six weeks after she gave birth and another taken 15 weeks postpartum.

The actress opened up about the importance of staying fit and healthy as a mum.

She wrote, “Dear body, Thank you! 5 months pregnant / 6wks PP / 15 wks PP. All different but all for a purpose. Growing my baby, feeding my baby, becoming strong and healthy again to be there for my baby. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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“My training has even more purpose now I have Mia. I’m her role model! My health and mentally feeling good was always my priority with exercise,” Gemma shared.

“It was never to compete on stage or to chase a certain physique. It was just to be the best version of ME! By making good nutritious choices with my meals without depriving myself (hello once a week cheesecake & pizza) I’m slowly getting back into it,” she continued.

Gemma had to have an emergency C section so the mum has to be cautious when it comes to pushing herself too much. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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“I started with just cardio around 8wks PP and last week I had my first session back in the gym. It was tough and I had to go back to basics but afterwards I felt amazing! It’s always worth it once those endorphins kick in,” Gemma shared.

Gemma said her mental health is already benefiting from exercise, “Despite being physically weaker in the gym after time away, I feel mentally stronger than I ever have going through what I did to bring Mia into this world. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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“When things get tough, I remind myself that I’m a Mum. A badass Mum. A privilege sadly denied to many… I’m so lucky, that's what keeps me going,” she added.

Gemma’s body positive post has filled us with inspiration. Exercise has an incredible impact on your mental health so we’ll be making more time for it in the future.

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by

Whether you suffer from anxiety, panic attacks or depression, dealing with the symptoms of a mental health issue is a daily struggle. 

Trying to keep your stress levels down can be a challenge in itself, especially when much of it comes our normal daily routines. 

Here's some of the most common habits that could contribute to low mood levels. 

Drinking too much caffeine

Whether it's your go-to morning coffee or a relaxing cup of tea in the evening, a lot of us rely on caffeine to get us through the day.

However, it might be time to cut-back on the flat whites as studies have shown a link between excessive caffeine intake and depression, moodiness and anxiety.

Try replacing one cup a day with a caffeine free alternative. Your energy levels may still benefit from the placebo effect, but you'll be doing your mental health a huge favour.

Avoiding exercise

The amount of physical activity we get each day can have a huge impact on our mood.

Research has suggested that regular exercise could even ease the symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Start small. Set aside 20 minutes a day for a brisk walk and you'll be amazed at how quickly your mood will improve.

Constantly checking social media 

Comparing yourself to others on social media is a slippery slope that rarely leads anywhere good.

It's easy to fall into the trap of believing that all your school mates are living extraordinary lives, but guess what, they're not .

Sure, maybe Sarah from the Gaelteacht is off raising baby elephants in Thailand for a month, but just remember that social media posts of just the 'highlight reel' of other people's lives.

Staying indoors

Underexposure to natural daylight can wreak havoc on our mental health.

Apart from the natural calming effect nature has on our minds, vitamin D, which is only produced when the body is exposed to sunlight, has been shown to protection against depression.

Overloading on carbs

Simple carbohydrates such as sugary, processed foods are broken down rapidly, providing the body with a quick source of energy.

Eating these types of foods on a regular basis can result in mood swings caused by fluctuating blood sugars.

Instead, try eating more complex carbohydrates such as whole grain breads and legumes.

Working too hard

This one is a bit of a no-brainer.

It's important to take a step back from your working life in order to focus on yourself.

So, turn off the work e-mails and go visit an old friend or family member – you'll be shocked at how relaxed you'll feel afterwards.

 

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Pieta House are calling on clubs, companies and individuals to do something that makes them “FeelGood” and create a positive atmosphere inside and outside the workplace this October to raise vital funds for the charity. Last year over 200 participants took part in ‘FeelGood with Pieta’. Participants raised funds and created awareness by organising yoga classes, lunchtime walks, with some people going the extra mile and tackling the 500km Camino Walk across Spain and France, all in support of ‘FeelGood with Pieta’.

The funds raised for ‘FeelGood with Pieta’ have a direct impact on the service users, as they help ensure the doors remain open and the services provided by Pieta House remain free. ‘FeelGood with Pieta’ ambassadors and well-known household names for the campaign include chef, Derry Clarke, international rugby players, Jack McGrath and Hannah Tyrell, and actor, Moe Dunford.

‘FeelGood with Pieta’ ambassador Derry Clarke, said; “I am delighted to be taking part in ‘FeelGood with Pieta’ again this October. It’s all about taking the time and reminding yourself how good you can feel, reaching out to others and enjoying time together.”

This year, ‘FeelGood with Pieta’ is expanding its outreach across two weeks from October 14 to 27 to encourage people to create and register their own style of event, by doing something that makes them “FeelGood”. Pieta have outlined three pillars to use as inspiration for ‘FeelGood with Pieta’ events:  

Connect – Focus on making time to re-connect with friends and family. Alternatively, make an effort to meet new people in your community/workplace. Organise a coffee morning in aid of Pieta House and invest time in building on existing relationships or creating new ones. 

Be Active – Get yourself moving. Go for a run with a friend, get out of the office for an hour and enjoy a lunchtime yoga class. Getting active doesn’t have to mean running a marathon. Something as a simple as a lunchtime walk or organising a steps challenge amongst peers is a certain way to create healthy competition and get a daily dose of exercise, while having fun!

Feel Good – Organise an event that will help you and friends feel good. Host a movie night with close friends, suggest a ‘Raffle an annual leave day’ competition to your boss. Hold an event that will instil positivity and a feeling of contentment amongst colleagues and friends. 

Speaking about the fundraising initiative, Elaine Austin, CEO of Pieta House, said; “The ‘FeelGood with Pieta’ campaign is an amazing opportunity for people to get active and take small steps towards improving their own mental health as well as raising vital funds for Pieta House to keep our doors open and services free for all. ‘FeelGood with Pieta’ is about taking the time to reconnect with friends, work colleagues or family members in a fun and uplifting way. We are extremely grateful for all donations and hope that the ‘FeelGood with Pieta’ initiative will encourage people to get out, have fun and spread awareness for an important cause.”

EY Ireland, which fundraises for Pieta House on a year-round basis, believes that employee wellbeing is crucial to the health and happiness of any workplace. Following the launch of the campaign, Ian Collins, EY’s Health & Vitality Partner Sponsor since 2018 said: “At EY, we place the health and wellbeing of our employees at the centre of our business. They are our greatest asset and we are committed to continually striving to improve their experience as employees so that their physical, mental and emotional needs are factored into everything that we do, and each of the supports that we provide.”

Since 2006, over 48,000 people have been through the Pieta House doors in a state of crisis, and with over 80% of funding coming from the public, support is vital to help continue this lifesaving work. 

Pieta House, which started as a small, Dublin-based charity in 2006 with just one centre with four staff, has now expanded to 15 centres employing over 270 therapists and administrative staff nationwide. From day one, all of the services it provides have been offered completely free of charge.

For more information and for tips on how to host your event, and turn it into a fundraiser, go to www.feelgoodwithpieta.ie .

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Love Island’s Camilla Thurlow has opened up about her mental health struggles on Elizabeth Day’s How To Fail podcast.

The former reality star opened up about she “entertained” thoughts about suicide and not being alive.

She told Elizabeth, “It's difficult for the people around you of course, if you're a people pleaser as soon as you start disappointing the people around you because you're feeling like that then you're trapped in that, is just a constant negative spiral."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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She shared: "You start to entertain thoughts about what not being alive would be like, even if it's just letting that cross your mind or whether it becomes a more serious thought pattern.

Camilla explained how she constantly felt uneasy, “It starts to become unbearable to be inside my own head all the time and I get completely trapped in it, trapped in a really sort of negative spiral."

"It's hard to talk about this necessarily, it's not that the other option becomes any less terrifying but when life becomes unbearable like that you start to think in a different way, it starts to change the way you look at everything."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The Love Island star said she descended into self-loathing, “I'd had it before so this year it was a recurrence and was managed a lot better. But immediately before Love Island I was in a very, very difficult phase and I really struggled to see a way out of it.

"It's when you can't see a way out, there's no light because you don't think that there's light at the end of the tunnel."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Camilla’s strength is beyond admirable. People who open up about their mental health are helping beat the stigma surrounding it.

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We pity the girl who sits in the cafe on her own, nursing a cup of coffee with nobody but herself for company, but news flash- people enjoy spending time on their own and it’s time for us to break down the stigma surrounding it.

As kids, we were fooled into thinking our self-worth was measured based on how many friends we had. You were a nerd if you spent lunchtime by yourself. You were sneered at when you were picked last for the basketball team. You were viewed as ‘unpopular’ if you celebrated your 14th birthday with five friends.

It is time for society to stop looking down on the guy who goes to the cinema by himself and give up addressing people as ‘loners’.

An army of wonderful people have shared why they love being on their own to help me beat this ridiculous notion.

Anna Keat said: “For a 19-year-old, I'm an extremely avid knitter and given how I also have anxiety, time to myself plus something as rhythmic as knitting really gets my head back in check.”

“I moved abroad and only had a handful of friends when I first moved over so I started doing some things alone and I found it SO peaceful. Not having to rely on others is a blessing at times,” said Shauna Kiely.

“I always love spending time with myself. For a myriad of reasons (not too draining, don’t have to make conversation, won’t panic about the way I behaved later on) but mostly because I’m the only person who won’t let me down,” Grace Latter shared.

“I found myself living alone suddenly after a relationship breakdown and was terrified but I had the time of my life!  I learnt to be happy in my own company & as a result I know myself so well now. We should all be our own one true love!” Penny revealed.

Victoria Teasdale, professional stress consultant and coach explained why we need to accept the fact that some people simply prefer time alone.

“Humans are made up of our own unique genetic code. When you realise that there are approximately 3 billion base pairs in the genome and that each of us can house variations of them that are infinitely unique, it’s about time that the word ‘normal’ is dropped from the vocabulary used to describe people.”

She explained: “While there is a benefit for us to be social, oxytocin release, problem-solving etc, some of us simply aren’t designed to be social people.”

“As a society, we do not teach people how to define their individuality.  In fact, it's better for corporations if we all aspire to be the same, we're easier to market to that way.

“What you're doing by saying 'it's unhealthy not to socialise' is pinning everyone as the same, discounting the fact that there's a LOT of variation in people who don't fall into the 'abnormal enough to be labelled' category."

So, what can we do to make a positive change? “What is needed is a shift towards teaching people how to discover their unique identities, their strengths, struggles, quirks and needs.

"To allow them to express themselves however they see fit. And if that means sitting at home with a book on a Friday night… That's ok by me!”

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We’ve always suspected it, but now scientists have confirmed that dog owners are more likely to have better cardiovascular health.

The research was published in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings and involved 1,769 people between 25 to 64-years-old, living in Brno in the Czech Republic.

Each participant had to provide information on their BMI, diet, physical activity levels, cholesterol, blood pressure, if they smoked or not and their fasting blood sugar levels.

42 percent of the candidates owned a pet of some sort, with 24 percent of people owning a dog and 17.9 percent owning another animal.

The American Heart Association heart score system test was used, looking at seven changeable risk factors of heart health.

Dog owners were more likely to exercise, have an ideal diet and blood glucose level than those who didn’t, but they were more likely to smoke for some reason. They still scored better overall for cardiovascular health, however.

The study authors cautioned: “The higher smoking rates among dog ownership attenuates the association between dog ownership and cardiovascular health.”

Existing evidence links dog ownership to better mental and physical health, so it makes total sense.

Study co-author Andrea Maugeri commented in a statement: “In general, people who owned any pet were more likely to report more physical activity, better diet and blood sugar at ideal level.

“The greatest benefits from having a pet were for those who owned a dog, independent of their age, sex and education level.”

Research claims that getting a pooch could be a useful way to boost heart health, and an important way to tackle the prevalence of heart disease. Aside from the obvious health benefits, your pup can potentially help you save on expensive gym membership by getting you exercising each day without you needing to hit the gym.

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the US alone, causing one-in-four deaths each year according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Senior investigator Francisco Lopez-Jimenez stated that owning dogs has previously been linked to better mental health and feeling less lonely, both of which are assumed to decrease the risk of heart attacks.

One study published last year in the journal BMC Psychiatry, which examined 17 existing papers concluded having a pet could help the symptoms of mental illness.

Philippa Hobson, senior cardiac nurse for the British Heart Foundation, told Newsweek: “Whether you’re a pet-owner or not, physical activity can benefit your heart in lots of different ways.

“Just spending 10 minutes a day walking around the block is good for your heart health.”

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Opening up about mental health struggles is quite a nerve wrecking thing because there are still so many people who will judge you and your issues.

We have made major strides in breaking the stigma surrounding mental health in recent years and that is thanks to the plethora of people who proudly share their own stories and experiences.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Authors like Matt Haig, Claire Eastham and Bryony Gordon have helped encouraged their readers to be more open about mental health because there is nothing to be ashamed of.

Millions of us struggle with our mental health, even celebrities like Sam Smith, Emilia Clarke and Naomi Campbell do, who are amongst a huge group of stars who will share their personal stories in Scarlett Curtis’s book It’s Not OK to Feel Blue (and other lies).

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The writer’s second book will be published by Penguin Hardback on October 3, 2019. 75 empowering figures will share what mental health means to them in the collection of essays.

Contributors include Elizabeth Day, Davina McCall, Simon Amstell, Miranda Hart, Lena Dunham, Gemma Styles, Jessie Cave, Ben Platt, Dawn O’ Porter, Adam Kay and Martha Lane Fox.

The Feminists Don’t Wear Pink author said, “I think more than anything I made this book for myself. Not for me now but for 19-year-old me. The me that decided that she didn’t want to be alive anymore. The me that felt so alone. The me that felt so ashamed.”

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Scarlett added, “All the royalties are going to the INCREDIBLE @giveusashoutinsta – the UK’s first 24/7 crisis text line in partnership with Sussex Royal.”

You can pre order your copy here.

Feature Image: Instagram/scarcurtis

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Some of us can live freely without worrying about the location of our mobile phones, and others can't.

Many of us know the sensation of an empty pocket leading to the terrifying feeling of loss when you can't find your phone, many of us don't. 

For certain people, the thought of not knowing where your phone is or not having it on your person at all times can cause genuine fear and anxiety. The scientific word for this is nomophobia.

If you get the feeling of ice cold dread just imagining the absence of your phone, you may be experiencing this 21st century phobia.

The phrase is an abbreviation for ‘no-mobile-phone phobia’, coined back in 2008 during a study of anxieties experienced by mobile phone users by the Post Office (random?).

Bear in mind that this study is now 11-years-old, but it discovered that 53 percent of phone users in the UK are anxious when they "lose their mobile phone, run out of battery, or have no network coverage".

The phobia is set to be among the largest non-drug addictions of this century, which is staggering.

We can now seemingly carry our entire lives with us in our pocket, whether it's for work, research, medical, business, pleasure, friendship, shopping, maps or just general communication.

While this is incredible advancement, it also means that we've grown to rely on the devices, to the point where some of us even feel chained to them.

amy poehler GIF

More recently, a 2017 YouGov study revealing that 38 percent of teenagers felt they couldn’t last a single day without their smartphone on them.

Nomophobia isn’t currently in the edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, but has been proposed as a ‘specific phobia’. It's essentially synonymous with smartphone addiction.

The symptoms of nomophobia are similar to that of other addictions, from dependency to a growing panic psychologically when you're without it for too long, sweating, shaking and heart palpitations.

nyc notice me GIF by ADWEEK

Addictive behaviour can take it's toll when it comes to emotional and psychological ramifications; low self-esteem, constantly seeking reassurance from phones with social media engagement and a low sense of self-worth.

Treatments include EMDR and cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), and more scientifically-backed options. Professional help is out there when it comes to nomophobia, believe it or not.

Set yourself small goals, like leaving your phone farther away in terms of proximity and for longer periods. Try giving it to somebody to take care of, a trusted friend or family member.

facebook need GIF

Log out of social media apps, or even just turn the notifications off. Silence is key, but it's important for you to realise that social media silence doesn't mean loneliness and isolation. 

Aim for more human connection, and give yourself breaks from technology by going on walks with friends or going for dinner with family. It's all about reliance and feeling okay with being totally alone.

Hypnotherapy is also becoming an increasingly common way to treat addiction, and acupuncture. Nomophobia is a totally irrational fear, seeing as we've survived without phones before and can do it again.

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