It’s official. Missouri is more stressed out than any other state, according to new research.
The survey of 12,500 Americans — split evenly by state — revealed that, among those surveyed, those in the “Show Me State” spend an average of three hours and 18 minutes per day worrying due to stress — more than any other state in America.
The second and third most stressed out states in America, according to the study, are Mississippi (three hours and 12 minutes) and West Virginia (three hours and six minutes per day worrying).
Interestingly, Missourians’ stressors aligned with the rest of the nation. When asked to pick which categories they were most stressed about, finances came in as the number one stressor across the board.
It was followed by COVID-19 and the ongoing pandemic with politics and current news rounding out the top three stress inducers.
Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Natrol Relaxia, the survey delved into these stressors and how they’re affecting Americans.
The poll results also revealed that 72 percent of Americans believe 2020 was the most stressful year they’ve lived through, and 57 percent are more stressed now than they have ever been in their lives.
Anxiety is also on the rise, as 56 percent said they’re more anxious than ever before.
Unfortunately, this additional stress and anxiety feels like it’s here to stay for awhile as the average respondent believes their stress and anxiety levels won’t go back to normal for almost six months, while just over 12 percent said they believe their stress and anxiety levels will never return to normal.
“This year brought about many unexpected stresses,” said Harel Shapira, Director of Marketing at Natrol. “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.”
As seen when asked about the categories of stress, finances came out on top. A lack of savings (38 percent) is causing Americans the most stress right now. Twenty-eight percent are worried about their loved ones becoming sick as a result of COVID-19, while 24 percent are very concerned about unemployment.
Shapira continued, “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.”
On the positive side, 48 percent of respondents say they have learned new ways to cope with managing stress and anxiety this year and 43 percent believe they’re now better equipped to handle stressful situations.
Many respondents have found physical activity to help with their stress and anxiety, whether it’s through walking (36 percent) or some other form of exercise (27 percent). Thirty-five percent have turned to more TV to block out the noise, while about a quarter of respondents are reading (26%) or making sure to take more regular breaks throughout their day (25%) in order to de-stress.
Some respondents are turning to vitamins and supplements to help with their stress and anxiety: 37 percent currently take one, while another 23 percent say they are interested in trying it. 56 percent of respondents would be more willing to take a vitamin or supplement if they knew it was a drug-free option.
“It’s important to set some time aside to unwind: slow down, breath, meditate, exercise or consider taking a supplement aid,” said Dr. Mike Dow, Ph.D., Psy.D.
WHAT ARE AMERICANS MOST STRESSED ABOUT?
• Finances/their financial situation – 41%
• COVID-19 and the ongoing pandemic – 35%
• Politics and current news – 29%
• Work/job – 21%
• Social life/personal relationships – 19%
AMERICANS’ TOP STRESSORS
• Lack of savings – 38%
• The current state of the country – 35%
• The presidential election – 30%
• Living paycheck to paycheck – 29%
• Worry about their loved ones getting becoming sick with COVID-19 – 28%
• Worry about getting infected and becoming sick with COVID-19 – 27%
• Budgeting – 26%
• Cost of health care – 26%
• Paying rent/managing monthly bills – 25%
• Unemployment/the possibility of being unemployed – 24%
• The candidates for the upcoming presidential election – 23%
• Feelings of loneliness or isolation – 22%
• Feelings of boredom – 22%
• Not receiving enough sleep/receiving too much sleep – 20%
• Not being able to see loved ones – 20%
• Making unhealthy food choices – 19%
• Losing a loved one to COVID-19 – 18%
• The current news cycle – 18%
• Having/maintaining a work/life balance – 14%
• Health care costs if they/a loved one becomes sick with COVID-19 – 14%
THE MOST STRESSED STATES – GROUPED FROM MOST TO LEAST
(BY TIME SPENT WORRYING PER DAY DUE TO STRESS)
• West Virginia
• New Mexico
• North Carolina
• New York
• Rhode Island
• South Carolina
• North Dakota
• New Hampshire
• New Jersey
• South Dakota