It’s time for a little good news, bad news about stress:
First, the good news, according to the American Psychological Association, overall, we’re less stressed than we used to be. In fact, the number of people who say they’re extremely stressed has dropped 17 percent.
So, here’s the bad news: Millennials – that’s young people between 18 and 33 - are more stressed than their parents ever were. Why? Mike Hais is the author of Millennial Momentum. And he says that graduating from school, getting a job, and starting a family have always been stressful, but Millennials are facing those milestones during tough economic times, and with the increase in student loans, it means that most young people are starting out with significantly more debt than previous generations.
Another issue: Most Millennials were raised to have high expectations for what they could achieve. So, being unemployed – or underemployed – simply adds to their anxiety.
But whether you’re 18 or 80, learning to cope with stress is a skill that everyone needs to master. Dr. Bruce McEwan wrote the book The End of Stress as We Know It, and he says the tried-and-true methods for handling stress are still the best:
Eat sensibly, get plenty of sleep, and exercise regularly. If that’s not enough, see your doctor. Research shows that people who seek medical assistance to help them manage chronic stress do a lot better than those who try to tough it out alone.