NEW YORK — There is no question that 2020 will go down as one of the most stressful years in American history, but a new survey finds some states felt that stress far more than others. A poll of 12,500 Americans from every state in the union reveals residents in Missouri are more stressed out than people in any other state. On average, Missourians spend three hours and 18 minutes per day worrying due to stress.
The Show-Me State barely edged out Mississippi, where residents spend three hours and 12 minutes per day worrying, and West Virginia, which loses three hours and six minutes each day to stress.
While Missourians may worry more, their concerns are still the same as the rest of the nation. Researchers find the top stressor in the U.S. are finances. COVID-19 and the ongoing pandemic followed closely behind with politics and current news rounding out the top three national stressors.
The power of unprecedented times
Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Natrol Relaxia, the survey revealed that 72 percent of Americans believe 2020 is the most stressful year they’ve lived through. Another 57 percent are more stressed now than they ever have been before. Anxiety is also on the rise, as 56 percent of the poll add they’re more anxious than ever before.
Unfortunately, this additional stress and anxiety might be here to stay. The average respondent feels their stress and anxiety levels won’t go back to normal for almost six months. Twelve percent believe their stress and anxiety will never return to normal.
“This year brought about many unexpected stresses,” says Harel Shapira, Director of Marketing at Natrol, in a statement. “People are feeling stressed about everything, be it their jobs, finances, politics, holidays or the pandemic. When people are overwhelmed, stressed and anxious, they just don’t feel like themselves.”
In 2021, finances continue to come in as the top stressor for Americans. Specifically, a lack of savings (38%) is causing respondents the most stress currently. Twenty-eight percent are worried about their loved ones contracting COVID-19 and while 24 percent are worried about unemployment.
“Acknowledging the everyday situations that create occasional stress and anxiety, and knowing there are simple measures that can be taken to be more successful in dealing with it is key to working through these moments successfully,” Shapira continues.
Supplement-al ways to manage stress
Thankfully, 48 percent of respondents have learned new ways to cope with managing stress and anxiety over the last year. Another 43 percent believe they’re now better equipped to handle stressful situations in the future.
Many respondents have found physical activity to help with their stress and anxiety, whether that’s by walking (36%) or another form of exercise (27%). One in three people have turned to more mindless entertainment like TV, while other respondents are reading (26%) or making sure to take more regular breaks throughout their day (25%) in order to de-stress.
Some respondents also are turning to vitamins and supplements to help with their stress and anxiety. Nearly four in 10 people (37%) currently take one. Another 23 percent say they would be interested in taking vitamins. In fact, 56 percent of respondents would be more willing to take a vitamin or supplement if they knew it was a drug-free option.
“For people seeking a solution to occasional stress for the remainder of 2020, it’s important to set some time aside to unwind: slow down, breath, meditate, exercise or consider taking a supplement aid,” says Dr. Mike Dow, Ph.D., Psy.D. “There are drug-free stress relief options such as Relaxia Day Calm that can help soothe daily tension so you can feel calm.”