The environmental agenda is becoming more relevant and topical every year. Last summer caused new concerns about the future of our planet after thermometers in Spain showed abnormal figures above 50 degrees, and the population had nothing to escape from the heat. Such changes can create concerns about the prospects of life on Earth and the possible damage that a person causes to flora and fauna. In some situations, such anxiety can turn into mental problems.
In this article, we will talk about what climate anxiety is, how widespread this phenomenon is, and how you can cope with this kind of anxiety.
Description of the State
Climate anxiety or eco-anxiety is a psychological condition characterized by the fact that a person experiences stress against the background of the environmental situation in the world. Climate anxiety is not a disease; it is an absolutely normal and controlled state of anxiety. At such moments, a person may experience feelings of grief, guilt, and shame due to the fact that he or she is unable to change the environmental situation and influence climate improvement. However, against the background of such emotions, a person’s mood and cognitive skills may deteriorate.
Prevalence of Climate Anxiety
Climate anxiety is a very common phenomenon, as according to sociological studies, more than 66% of people in America are worried about the state of the climate. Speaking about the most vulnerable group, it can be noted that these are young people aged 16 to 25 years. So, about 84% of people from this age stratum are thinking and moderately worried about the climate situation, while 59% suffer from severe experiences. Such figures are explained by the fact that the well-being of the future life of young people depends on the climatic conditions on Earth.
Now, these changes are not so fatal. However, already today, these young people have an increased risk of developing depression and the use of heavy psychotropic drugs.
Ways to Combat Climate Anxiety
The most effective way is to talk to friends, parents, or psychotherapists. In the case of climate anxiety, the main thing is not to accumulate anxiety, so it is necessary to share experiences with someone you trust. In addition, you can become a participant or advise a person who suffers from climate anxiety to become a member of organizations where people share their thoughts about the climatic situation. One of these organizations is the Good Grief Network.
Finally, returning to the feeling of shame, we can note that people with climate anxiety can influence the situation. For example, you can refuse to travel by plane, which leaves a large carbon footprint, and travel on environmentally friendly transport. You can also become a participant in programs that raise public awareness of the problem of climate degradation and bring this information to the masses.