By Catherine Nitelet-Vedder, Wellness Educator

A year ago, we interviewed Pam Farrell, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016. Now in remission, Pam shares how she has been doing since then and how she has been dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic.

How is your health since our last interview?

My health has improved for two reasons. One, I had my medication changed because the side effects were muscle and joint pain. My new medication for cancer is much kinder to my body. Secondly, I started swimming, walking and doing yoga and golfing. This workout is much gentler on my body. I’m not hurting like I used to. I also don’t feel weekly injuries.

How have you been doing since the beginning of the pandemic?

The pandemic has created new opportunities for outside activities including swimming which has been so rewarding. My health club closed and I was able to join another club that offers more outside activities as well as dining outside.I try to look for new experiences such as painting, trying new recipes, hiking and renovating my condo.

How do you deal with stress during this crazy time?

I am very fortunate to have good friends to be able to reach out to for expression and venting. Sometimes, I send positive messages and humorous ones to family and friends to keep things light. People are very stressed out right now, for all the reasons we know, and just introducing some positivity into everyone’s life keeps us all on track. Even though I don’t have a lot of stressors, exercise and healthy eating also contribute to lowering my stress. Personally, working through some situations with others including taking a break, taking a breath, or doing exercise before responding to unwarranted advice are just a few ways I use to keep sane.

What are the positive ways you use to better yourself?

Having behavioral health training in my education, I have been able to access helpful strategies to work through issues. I have a Master of Science degree in counseling psychology and help families and kids work through their problems. I’ve also taken myself off some social media sites and posts when they were upsetting, stopped watching the news except once a day. I try to live a healthy life surrounded by friends and family. I think the main thing through this pandemic has been to instill hope in others and look for the positives in each situation.

WYAO Hawaii Corporate Wellness continues to partner with companies to support thriving cultures of wellbeing as well as wellness campaigns. To find out how we can support your organization’s Wellness Program, please reach out to Terri@wyaohawaii.com