Forest fires, floods, and droughts are just a few negative impacts of global warming, and with climate change being an immense issue, it can be difficult to deal with the stress that comes with learning about climate change and climate activism. This is why learning to deal with stress and climate anxiety will help you to stay motivated and positive!
If you are concerned about climate change and wish to contribute to making positive change, consider joining an environmental group, project, or campaign! Regardless of experience, you can find various opportunities and give as much or as little time as you want, and you will feel better knowing you are making a difference. However, there is such a thing as doing too much.
Activism fatigue is mental, physical, and emotional exhaustion that can occur when exerting too much energy through taking actions to achieve a goal. While activism is important, there is a line that can be crossed, which will lead to overstressing and eventual burnout. Self-care is vital in maintaining motivation, health, and prosperity.
Self-care is broad when it comes to every individual, but there are several effective options. First and foremost, take time off of your environmental work or skip a meeting if you have to. There is nothing wrong with taking time to rest and rejuvenate. Your teammates and leaders will understand; they have likely felt the same way at one point. Other activities include meditating, going for walks, spending time in nature, listening to music, and any other hobby that brings you joy, peace, and total relaxation!
Additionally, a great way to ease climate-change related anxiety is to spend time in nature. Not only is spending time outside healing, but while doing so, you have the opportunity to take care of the plant in a big or small way. There are many environmentally friendly and calming activities you can implement including take a walk, pick up trash, garden, and compost!
Along with stress and unease, you may be feeling gloomy with the large input of negative news. It can be hard to constantly hear that the planet is hurting. Good news, though, talking with someone can help to let go of stress and allow for constructive conversation. The best part is that you can talk to anyone around you: a friend, family, fellow volunteer, etc. There is also good news to be found on the climate. Take some time to look up some positive news.
All in all, balance is key when it comes to taking care of yourself. One key fact to remember: no matter how much you are doing, it is enough! Now, once you are feeling better and motivated, you can accomplish anything. With proper self-care and stress relief, you’ll be ready to tackle anything — especially climate change!