"There was lots more to discover!"

http://moderndaygirlblog.com/thrive-mental-health-app-anxiety/

With technology progressing at the rate it is, we’ve got much more choice in how we manage our mental health and anxiety. After all, anxiety/panic attacks/etc. can occur at any given moment and we won’t always be near a computer/another person to get help.

This leaves us in a sticky situation when things get a bit overwhelming.

This is where mobile apps come in. Being so busy all the time, we need something to help us on the go, when traditionally we’d have time to seek advice. I can’t be the only person that has probably hundreds of apps/games on their phone?

I’ve been meaning to download some apps to help me with my anxiety recently. We could all do with gentle reminders to look after ourselves when things get a bit tough. When I was told about Thrive, I decided to give it a go. This is what I found!

Downloading the app was as easy as it is for any other app. I had to register an account but again, this was very easy to do. Simple is always best in my eyes! After logging in, I was asked to answer some questions about myself and what my current mood was like.

At the time of writing this, 99% of my answers were light green, so my result came back as feeling mild anxiety and no depression. Pretty accurate I must say.

Straight after my results had been given, and what impressed me though, was that it directs you to the NHS choices website to search for help. You had the choice on whether you took this up straight away (the app is UK based), or at a later point. I’ve not come across an app as yet that does this and thought it was a great feature to have.

When I’m worried about a particular issue, I often have a browse on the NHS site to get some advice. Very nice touch!

So, once I’d gone through the questions, the app suggested some exercises to try to help ease my mild anxiety. It recommended slow breathing exercises, and riding a bike for thirty minutes.

The only problem with that is that I don’t actually own a ‘real’ bike! But I do own an exercise bike so this worked for me.You’d probably need to substitute biking with walking/running. Something worth bearing in mind if you wanted to give it a go.

Now that I was through the first part, I was given some more choices on what to do next. My choices were:

Breathing – practising slow breathing to help me feel more relaxed

Meditation – within this section I was given 5 more choices on which area I wanted to focus on.

Deep muscle – this involved tensing and relaxing my muscles which helps to lower anxiety levels

Self suggestion – this technique trained me to associate a word with feeling calm.

I already knew breathing techniques and meditation, so I thought I’d give deep muscle and self suggestion techniques a go.

The deep muscle exercise only lasts for around 4 minutes but I found it immensely useful + calming.

The idea is that you tense certain parts of your body, with deep breathing and studying how your body feels. I didn’t complete this with as much effort as I could have done, but I did feel much more relaxed afterwards.

The self suggestion exercise is shorter than the muscle exercise, but no less effective. You’re talked into an almost meditative state and have to think about certain words during this time. I found it very calming, and enjoyed being walked through this.

Both of these exercises have a lovely female narrator throughout. That definitely helped keep me on track as I know I can get easily distracted.

There are other options in the menu that I only discovered after more playing around. There is a zen garden where you can play around with your on sandbox. You get to create your own garden and place objects. It’s pretty therapeutic!

Plus there was lots more to discover.

SO, OVERALL?

Positives

  • Easy to use – the menu is easy to navigate
  • Graphics are pleasant – I had a little helper with me that I could click if I needed any direction
  • It had some different ideas to help me with my anxiety – 2 of the 4 options I’d never heard of before and it was good to have more tools in my arsenal to help me relax.

Negatives

  • Some of the screens were a bit glitchy (that’s it!)

Overall, I enjoyed using the app and haven’t uninstalled it just yet! If you’re looking for an app to help you keep calm, this is definitely for you. Plus, just watching the waves roll on the sand in the background was calming! Well worth a try.

(P.S. this isn’t a sponsored post in any way – I enjoyed this app and wanted to share with you.)

Bronwyn SouthrenComment