April is National Stress Awareness Month. The event has been held every April, since 1992 to increase public awareness about both the causes and cures for our modern stress epidemic.
Stress Awareness Months is a time for us to reflect upon the causes and impacts of stress in our own lives so that we can take action to minimise our levels of stress where possible.
Experiencing menopausal symptoms can be a major cause of stress for many people. Feeling as though the experience isn’t something that can be talked about openly with family, friends and/or colleagues can also significantly increase stress levels of those at all stages of menopause.
Stress affects us all differently and can cause a range of emotional and physical responses that impact our lives. For those already experiencing very real changes to their physical and mental health during menopause, this can be overwhelming.
According to a 2018 Mental Health Foundation study, 74% of UK adults felt so stressed at some point during the 12 month study that they felt overwhelmed or unable to cope. Moreover, 36% of all adults who reported stress cited either their own or a friend/relative’s long-term health condition as a factor. This rose to 44% of adults over 55.
The ways in which stress can negatively impact our lives is very real and is something we have to be aware of if we have any hope of taking corrective action and reducing our stress to manageable levels.
One of the simplest yet most effective ways that we can reduce stress around symptoms of the menopause is to talk about it. Sharing our experiences, offering support, advice and solidarity can be a powerful tool in alleviating some of the immediate pressure many people feel throughout menopause.
And that’s exactly what we set out to do at #FlushFest2021.
#FlushFest2021 is the world’s first virtual menopause festival and will bring together people from around the world to talk, listen and learn from each other. This year the event will take place on Friday 30th April and Saturday 1st May.
The festival uses the arts as a means of exploring menopause from several perspectives. Attendees will learn from experts and from each other, whilst having lots of fun along the way.
Previous festival goers have commented on the connections made at the event, saying, ‘Thank you for a great event, very informative and I loved sharing experiences’ and, ‘Enjoyed everything, especially meeting others who understand.’
This year’s action-packed programme includes everything from menopause in the workplace seminars, to poetry and belly dancing workshops, to stand-up comedy and cabaret nights, and much more besides, all from the comfort of your own home as you join in virtually.
The event will be full of laughter, as well as the relief and recognition of shared experience. It really is the perfect way to de-stress this Stress Awareness Month, so come join the conversation and help break the taboo.
The Menopause Café is a volunteer run charitable organisation whose mission is to get people of all ages and genders talking openly about menopause