*I was given a months free trial of Feel Stress Free in return for a review. All opinions are my own*
In yesterday’s post, I mentioned that one of the ways that I keep mentally healthy is by using the app, Feel Stress Free. About a month ago, I was contacted and asked would I like the opportunity to try the app for free. Of course I absolutely jumped at the chance. I have dabbled in other apps that help with reducing stress and anxiety but I didn’t fall in love with any of them. As with everything to do with mental health, it just has to fit and if it doesn’t you need to find one that does.
“Sometimes we can all feel like things are getting on top of us. That’s why the psychiatrists and psychologists at Thrive have created Feel Stress Free, an app that can help you manage your mental health and relax in just 5 minutes. By practicing the techniques in the app, you will learn to build your resilience to the stresses, pressures and anxieties life throws your way.” – Thrive (the app developers)
Coming from a mental health background, it was obvious to me that Feel Stress Free was developed by mental health professionals and I took huge comfort from this. It is great to see relaxation therapy and deep breathing exercises so readily available. When I worked in an acute mental health unit, there was a lot of focus on relaxation as part of treatment plans. It is very handy having one app that covers the most important aspects
Once you download the app, you have the option of a 3 day trial and then subscribing to one of the plans. The subscription is broken down into monthly, quarterly and yearly with prices starting from £1.99 for the yearly subscription.
The app focuses on Breathing, Meditation, Deep Muscle and Self Hypnosis. Each of these icons allows you to decide how long you want to dedicate to the activity and gives you the ability to read all about the benefits. The mood meter (which I talk about below) also recommends the frequency and duration you should be using the app, based on your answers. Once you select your activity of choice, there is a lovely voice that talks you through what you need to do. When I was doing meditation, I found that the time passed quickly and I felt a noticeable difference in my mood after my session had finished. Feel Stress Free made me want to go check in every day. It encouraged me to make sure I was making time for myself and my mental health.
The mood meter is probably my favourite part of the app. In here, you are taken through a selection of situations, issues that are causing the situation, thoughts that make you feel like this and better ways to think about the situation. Depending on the way you answer your questions, you may then be prompted with questions that are used in a traditional self rating depression scale. Right now, my mood is pretty good so I tested the app in various different moods, giving answers that I know I would have given had I been very depressed, to see how the app functioned. By giving answers that suggested I was very low in mood, the app then proceeded to provide me with numbers for the NHS and Samaritans. This has to be, by far, the best aspect of the app. Knowing that when someone is at the lowest point of their life, they are more than likely not going to look for help (as they may be mentally unable to do so) providing contact details that are there in front of you, may make all the difference in someone seeking help.
The other great aspect of the app is that the first time you open the app every day you are prompted with the mood meter. This means that if you were feeling great yesterday, but kind of awful today, by putting that into the mood meter you will get a new set of recommended activities for your corresponding mood. The app is completely responsive to your mood on that given day. It allows you the ability to increase or decrease your activity dependent on how you are feeling, which again is a key factor to keeping depression and anxiety under control. By actively managing the symptoms as they occur, we can reduce length, intensity and frequency of our symptoms.
There are lots of other great areas within the app, such as the being able to view your progress and mood over days, weeks and months and the Zen Garden – which is ridiculously peaceful. Feel Stress Free is full of really useful and important information about issues you have identified during the mood meter session. To me, this information lets us know that what you are feeling is normal and here is what we can do about it.
Once my trial period has ended I will 100% be purchasing a longer subscription to the app. I feel like it fits in well with my life and my needs and it can help me feel better on those bad days and keep me good on the good days. Feel Stress Free is available on both iOS and Android and is well worth every penny.
I would love to know if you decide to try out the app. Let me know in the comments if you do and how you find it x