News in 2020 has grown to become a hard pill to swallow.
Between climate change, the omnipresent US Election and COVID-19 – the chaos that has been the past few months has been enough to allow anyone to feel overwhelmed.
Back in 2016, the American Psychological Association conducted a survey of thousands of Americans to measure their stress levels during the presidential election. Overall, 52 per cent of adults said the election was a source of stress – a number that was more or less equal between Republicans and Democrats and between men and women. People older than 71 felt the most stress, followed by millennials.
Perhaps the high proportion of stress among young people comes from constantly refreshing Facebook since 54 per cent of adults who use social media said the election was stressing them out.
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Here's what the American Psychological Association recommends to keep your stress at bay during trying news cycles:
Switch off screens
Power down your phone and shut off your TV, too. Read just enough to stay informed, then go for a walk or spend time with your friends.
Ask your friends from talking about the news
Do you have that one friend or family member who loves to worry, is a hypochondriac or enjoys the art of scaremongering? Avoid that person for a while, and be mindful of the topics you bring up when around others.
Turn your anxiety into something productive
For example, if climate anxiety is getting you down, donate to any number of organisations looking to make a change.
Remember: This, too, shall pass
Lockdown, elections and illness. These things have all happened before, so we know how to get through them. Avoid catastrophising and maintain a balanced perspective. The goal is to look after number one and believe that the right thing will happen for the right time.
If you are concerned for your personal health, the HSE is advising that you call their info line on 1850 24 1850 or 041 6850300 – this service is open from 8am to 8pm, Monday to Saturday.
Main image by @noircastingandcreative