by Marty Poehler
An article posted online on April 26, 2019 in Psychology Today titled, “U.S. Leads in the Worldwide Anxiety Epidemic” by Dr. Alison Escalante had as it’s lead-in, “Gallup reports worldwide negative experience is at a record high.”
It said, “Again in 2019, the Gallup World Emotions Report shows a rise in stress and worry. In fact, worldwide stress levels have reached a new record, with the U.S. leading with some of the highest rates in the world. Globally, the negative experience index remains at a record high again this year, but worry and sadness are also increasing.”
Gallup collected interviews with more than 151,000 adults in more than 140 countries in 2018. Their findings are not encouraging:
-35% of people said they were stressed
-35% said that they experienced worry the day before they were questioned.
Worldwide leaders in anxiety, by country:
Greece: 59 percent of the population
US: 55 percent of the population (the report considers the two countries statistically have the same rate.)
“This means that despite a growing American economy, adults in the U.S. are more worried, stressed, and angry. These rates of stress and worry (45%) are at a high when compared to polls over the last 12 years, and anger is at its highest level since 2006 (22%). The percentage of Americans who experienced stress was 20 points higher than the global average.”
Dr. Escalante goes on, “It comes as no surprise that younger Americans are having the hardest time. About 65% of people between 15 and 49 reported stress and 51% reported worry. But it is of particular note that the youngest Americans were the most angry, with a rate of 32%.”
“Why Are We More Stressed and Angry?” she asked.
Though not knowing the specific reasons for the increase in stress, “similar research done by the American Psychological Association in the U.S. says “many people are bothered by what they are seeing in the news. The impact of ever-present, frightening and personalized newsfeeds cannot be helping.”
Dr. Escalante continues,“The APA has also reported that Americans are increasingly stressed about the future of the nation. It is not unlikely that stress about the future of their country and the world is a driver in many other countries as well.”
“What Can We Do?” asked Dr. Escalante in the article. She offered a solution, and at the same time mentioned this solution might actually add to stress!
“There are many mindfulness and self-compassion practices that can help us, though this can add to stress by adding one more thing to do.”
There’s a truth that is better than any technique in becoming free from anxiety and stress.
This short video talks about this truth and how it can effectively deal with anxiety in each one of us.