Over half of Americans expect Election Day to be the most stressful day of their lives thus far, according to new research.
According to a recent survey that asked 2,000 U.S. adults to evaluate their current mental health, 55% believe Nov. 3, 2020, will be the tensest day yet this year.
In addition, 59% said they can’t imagine being more stressed than they’ve been this year, and 67% just want the year to be over already.
Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Feelmore Labs and Cove, the survey also revealed millennials and Gen Xers were more likely to anticipate Election Day to be their most stressful day — at 61% and 58% respectively, whereas only 32% of baby boomers shared this sentiment.
Of course, it’s not just the election that’s cast a pall over 2020. When asked to list the most stressful aspects of this year, 63% of people cited the current COVID-19 pandemic and quarantine — 15% more than the number of people who cited the election.
Now, 95% said the stress of 2020 has negatively impacted their overall health — most notably their sleeping patterns (45%), their ability to focus (44%) and their weight (41%).
In fact, 44% of respondents said the COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted their sleep and 61% would not have considered themselves to be stressed out before the pandemic.
Half of respondents even shared that their stress is so overwhelming, they feel like they don’t even have time to find a way to manage it.
The easiest way respondents are finding the time, however, is through much-needed beauty sleep, as 69% said a night of sound sleep makes them feel less stressed the next day.
On average, they defined a good night’s rest as being at least 6.27 hours, and a bad night’s rest as being 4.2 hours or less — a difference of only two hours total.
With all of this in mind, 75% of those polled said they believe there’s a direct correlation between their stress levels and sleep quality.
Nearly seven in 10 respondents (67%) also shared that when they have a stressful day, the quality of their sleep is directly impacted in a negative way.
Eighty-two percent believe stress management is important to their health, with almost half (47%) saying it’s “very” important.
“While we all experience stress in a multitude of ways, one thing is certain — sustained elevated levels of stress negatively affect our quality of sleep, while better sleep quality has the power to positively impact those same stress levels,” said Francois Kress, Co-Founder & CEO of Feelmore Labs. “By reducing stress and unlocking the key to better sleep, we can improve our overall health and wellness.”
Despite that, the typical person spends 25 minutes a day actively trying to manage their stress, with methods that take time and effort like exercising (38%), going for a walk (43%) and meditating or practicing breathing exercises (30%).
And while these practices are effective, 60% of people say they need a stress-management tool that is easy to use and doesn’t take additional time out of their day.
“Stress management is critically important, now more than ever. But it should not be a stressful task itself,” added Kress. “It is important to have a practice that fits effortlessly into your daily life and leads to sustained healthy results.”
Top 5 Most Effective Self-Care Practices of 2020
1. Reading — 43%
2. Fitness and exercise — 38%
3. Hobbies — 35%
4. Meditation — 30%
5. Cooking or baking — 27%
Top 5 Most Stressful Aspects of 2020
1. COVID-19/quarantine — 63%
2. The 2020 presidential election — 49%
3. Increase in police violence or social unrest — 46%
4. Financial uncertainty — 44%
5. Climate change — 29%
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