“Over the last two to three years, reported cases of eco-anxiety have risen dramatically across the world, especially as the threat of climate change and its environmental impacts have become more regularly reported in the media and online.”*
But what is it?
Eco-Anxiety can be identified in a few different ways.
It can be when the impacts of climate change, global ecological disaster or a specific extreme weather event become a constant and overwhelming worry that you can’t seem to work past. Or, it can manifest through huge amounts of guilt concerning the environmental impact of your actions and the feeling of helplessness that we aren’t doing enough.
Does any of this sound familiar? Then you might be experiencing eco-anxiety. The good thing is, you’re not alone.
Eco-Anxiety can get us all down, wondering if we are making a difference and worrying about the future of our beautiful planet. Take a deep breath, let the eco-anxiety wash over you and check out these tips for managing the worries when they come.
Don’t Bottle It Up
Keeping your stress to yourself will end up just stressing you out more! So get talking. Chat to your friends and family about how you’re feeling, or even find like-minded people on social media! Talking is one of the simplest ways to ease your mind, and you never know; it might help you come up with plans for the future.
Celebrate The Victories
It can be easy to feel totally doom and gloom, but remind yourself that there are wins out there. No matter how big or small, celebrating wins for the planet will help soothe the anxieties as you realise good things are happening. For example, coral reefs off the coast of Fiji that were devastated by a cyclone in 2016, are now once more teeming with fish, marine life and beautiful coral.**
This may seem counterintuitive, but hear us out. By reading up on the big issues, you’ll be able to see where you can make a direct impact. Some things will take more time and bigger changes, so focus on what you can do now and go do it. Whether this is cutting out single-use plastic, attending a protest or changing the way you consume fashion (Hello, Bandi), no change is too small.
Finally, remember to take a deep breath and remind yourself that you are doing the best you can.