You guessed it, Americans are some of the most stressed people in the world. Or at least they believe they are.
According to Gallup’s annual Global Emotions report, 55% of American respondents said they’d felt a lot of stress the day before, well above the global average of 35%.
Gallup polled about 1,000 adults in countries around the world. Negative emotions and experiences — stress, anger, worry, sadness and physical pain — were common around the world, tying 2017’s record-setting levels, the report found.
In the U.S., Gallup’s research found that lower-income Americans tended to report more stress, as did those who disapprove of President Donald Trump. Prior studies and polls have found that finances, health and health care and politics and current events are leading stressors for Americans, and social media and technology are frequently blamed for stress and mental health issues as well.
Writing for time.com, Jamie Ducharme states: “While some stress is normal and even healthy, chronic stress is connected to a range of conditions, including mental health issues, cognitive changes and chronic disease. That makes widespread stress a public-health issue.
And curbing it a priority.
Toward that goal, we look to how a person can manage a leading component of stress -- fear.
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Stan Popovich is the author of “A Layman’s Guide to Managing Fear.” Writing for InsideSources.com, he offers six ways to deal with panic attacks brought on by fear. Try putting them into practice:
1. Take a break: The first thing a person must do when experiencing a panic attack is to stop whatever they are doing. A panic attack can be very uncomfortable and can affect a person’s everyday thinking. Take a break to help regain your sense of comfort.
2. Take deep breaths: A person should take some deep breaths to help feel better and to get rid of some of the excessive fear and anxiety. There are also many kinds of breathing exercises a person can learn to follow with the help of a mental health counselor. Taking some deep breaths can help a person relax right away.
3. Distract yourself: A person should try to distract themselves from the panic they are experiencing. A person could get some fresh air, listen to some music, take a brisk walk, read the newspaper, or do something relaxing that will give them a fresh perspective on things.
4. Get the facts of your situation: Many people feel as if they are going to die when they experience a panic attack for the first time. The fact is that you will be OK and that it takes a few minutes for the anxiety to go away. Talk to a counselor and get the facts of what a panic attack is and what you can do when an attack occurs.
5. Don’t dwell on your thoughts: A person must not dwell or focus on their thoughts during a panic attack. The more a person tries to reason out their thoughts, the longer a panic attack will last. Read some positive statements from your favorite self-help book to help overcome your negative thoughts during a panic attack.
6. Get help: It is important to talk to a qualified professional in order to learn how to survive a panic attack. By talking to a professional, a person will be helping themselves in the long run because they will become better able to deal with any panic attacks that may occur in the future.