How to manage anxieties AND help your friends:
You would not be wrong to assume that a global crisis is fueling global mental health decline. The ever-present threat of climate change that cannot be addressed through a day of hard work is in direct conflict with basic human needs to ensure one's own existence and determine our own future. Students and youth are individuals who are impacted in unique ways. We have our entire lives ahead of us and now is the time to make meaningful decisions that will have lasting effects and consequences, but climate change makes all of those choices uncertain.
To manage your personal anxiety, it's important to share your worries and fears with peers, a trusted therapist, or a support group. As the climate crisis is an evolving issue, the best way to manage your anxiety is through action. Either getting outside for a walk or joining a local movement, doing something where you can see an immediate impact is a great way to manage negative emotions. Some examples could be to join an outdoor recreation club or a group that teaches ways to live sustainably, it doesn't have to be a massive movement for you to make and see a difference. Local and small-scale initiatives are a more accessible way for everyday people to get involved with environmental issues that often have a more tangible effect than larger-scale operations. Movements have the most influence when they are closest to their roots where their issues are most relevant. Joining any local outdoor club, movement, or organization will introduce you to a number of like-minded people who very likely carry the same concerns about our future climate.
Stressing the importance of mental health, there is no correct way of navigating our negative emotions and finding some sort of balance. Different methods work for different people. If you or someone you know has been struggling with climate-related mental health issues, please reference the links below for more ways to address climate anxiety and find resources for help if needed.
Want some more advice? Here are some additional resources: