Eco-Anxiety: What is it and 10 Ways to Manage it

What does climate anxiety mean?

Eco-anxiety is a sense of extreme worry about our planet, our future, and essentially our existence. It’s a relatively new term since this is something that humankind has never experienced before. However, it seems like more people are talking about it now.

It’s normal

We are faced with a massive threat. It’s only natural we feel scared and anxious. If you are not even slightly concerned, then maybe you don’t know enough about what is happening. This is about our very survival. Not only us but all biodiversity on planet earth.

What can you do about it?

We can barely deal with anxiety on an individual level (e.g. how we look, what others think of us etc.), so how are we meant to cope with something on a global scale? Thankfully, there are a few things you can do to feel better.

01. Follow your values

Live like you want everyone to live. Lower your carbon footprint to reduce your impact on climate change, try to become zero waste to reduce plastic pollution, and consider changing your diet. Align your values with your lifestyle. There are many things you could do to live more sustainably.

02. Action

You can have an impact too. It will be overwhelming and you will feel like you are not making a big difference at the beginning but we all have to start somewhere.

03. Go into nature

Get a break from the modern world and the headlines on your phone. Once in a while, take the time to walk or sit among the trees. It will remind you what you fighting so hard for. Those times where you feel like giving up, wander into nature and simply observe.

04. Protect nature

There are many ways in which you can give back. Either by supporting charities and eco-businesses or by going out there yourself. Have you considered volunteering? That could really help you. If there are no organizations near you, don’t be discouraged. You can still go out there on your own ( and maybe take your friends) and do some good deeds. Litter picking is often a popular one.

05. Disconnect

We are always connected. That device that is never 5m away allows us to get instant updates on current events. While it can be a good thing, there’s a point where you become too updated on everything. This could be fuelling your eco-anxiety even more. Disconnecting every so often will only benefit you.

06. Find your own community

Finding like-minded people could help a lot. Just knowing there are people out there fighting the good fight will make you feel better. Not to mention you will be able to have a bigger impact if more of you join together. Talking with individuals who also care about the planet will make you feel more at ease too. Talking about what you feel is always great therapy.

07. Inspire others

Don’t just take individual action. Inspire others to do the same. If you start changing your lifestyle and telling people why you are doing it, some of them are bound to change too. You won’t be able to convince everyone at once but small steps can make a big difference in the long run.

08. Filter our fake news

Don’t believe everything you see. Just because someone posted something on Instagram, it doesn’t make it true. These inaccurate facts could make things seem worse than they actually are. Always check the information. If there aren’t any other sources saying the same, it’s likely it’s not true or accurate.

09. Acceptance

One person cannot solve the entire climate crisis. It’s important to understand that. Accept the situation and the fact that you can only do so much. This does not mean accepting that the planet will be destroyed so we may as well sit back and enjoy life while we still can.

10. Be optimistic

Think more positively. Instead of picturing a climate apocalypse, imagine how amazing the world could be if we all fought for the same cause. The world could be an amazing place is all countries joined forces. Stop scaring people of what the future will be like if we don’t act. Tell them about what it could be like if we implemented all these changes and redesigned our society. More people will join you then.

Conclusion

Eco-anxiety is only normal. It shows that you really care about the environment. But instead of letting that fear get the best of you, turn it into action. We can’t just sit in the corner and cry.

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Terra Movement

Terra Movement

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Using creativity to help the planet. We need more designers and creatives in the climate movement. www.terramovement.com