Recently I was talking with a friend who shared with me that her cousin, who lives on an idyllic beach has worked out a novel way to have her eight teenage grandchildren communicate with her and each other when they come to stay.

She purchased a safe and at 9pm each night she collects all eight mobile phones and locks them in the safe for the next 12 hours. The teens actually have to talk to her and each other. She says it’s a wonderful experience for all of them.

Her home is also tablet, laptop and PC free when the grandchildren visit.

Last night I was talking with a graduate of a recent Stress to Strength Experience (STSE) workshop. He is in his late twenties and as well as his administration management position in a very busy small business, he and his wife are studying for their MBAs. Their life is full on.

This young man shared with me that since completing the STSE workshop three months ago, he has been using the tools he learned and his stress levels have really reduced. He is now aware of the stress that social media can create and the huge waste of time it can be.

The Australian Psychological Society Stress and Wellbeing Survey was released in November 2015. Below are some key findings.

The special topic for the 2015 Survey was the Fear of Missing Out (FoMO). The FoMO survey, included adults and teenagers, examined how entrenched use of social media is in our lives and gauged its impact on our lives. For instance:

  • Can Australians switch off from social media without experiencing anxiety?
  • Is staying constantly connected a benefit or a burden?
  • Is social media shaping how we behave and relate?

56 per cent of Australian teens are heavy social media users, with 25 per cent of Australian teens reported being connected to social media constantly. There were no significant differences between age groups or gender in the frequency of connecting to social media.

FoMO is having an effect on the lives of Australian teens.

  • 50 per cent of teens experience FoMO.
  • On average, 59 per cent of teens feel the need to keep track of their friends when they are on holiday.
  • 51 per cent on average feel that it is important to post status updates when they are having a good time.
  • Just under half of Australian teens (approximately 45 per cent) feel that their peers are having more rewarding experiences than them and 46 per cent also wonder if they are spending too much time keeping up with what is going on with others.

Almost one in four Australian adults are heavy social media users, with six per cent being constantly connected.

Social media dominates the life of many teens.

  • 53% connect to social media 15 minutes before bed every night.
  • 37% in the presence of others and within 15 minutes of waking up.
  • 24% reported using social media when they were eating breakfast and lunch seven days a week.
  • 57% find it difficult to sleep or relax after spending time on social media
  • 60% feel brain burnout from constant connectivity of social media

Both Australian adults and teens experience Fear of Missing Out (FoMO): one in two teens and one in four adults.

To give you more time to exercise, play, think, relax and meditate maybe buying a safe could be a good investment in reducing your stress and improving your health and wellbeing. Or, maybe even starting with self-imposed periods each day where you park your device and don’t engage in social media would support and enhance your wellbeing.

If you would like to immerse yourself in two days of creating your own unique Stress Management Toolkit with tools and strategies that build your resilience and lead you to the calm, then join us in Brisbane on 13 & 14 August for the Stress to Strength Experience Workshop. We have a fantastic team of qualified Stress Management Practitioners who will guide and mentor you through the processes. Plus you’ll have lots of fun and go home relaxed and de-stressed.

To join us, register at

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