1 min read
Rob Cheesewright  (Pinwheel author)

Rob Cheesewright

How to combat climate anxiety

After a summer dominated by climate emergencies – from historic droughts in Europe and wildfires in the US, to heatwaves in China and the worst floods in Pakistan this century – it’s all too easy to feel overwhelmed. In the face of bad news for the planet, try these ways to repurpose your climate anxiety as fuel for positive change.

Monitor your media consumption

Even for the most clued-up climate activist, reading constant coverage of the environmental crisis worldwide can be crushing. Try to focus your consumption: consider setting a limit on time spent reading the news, seek out coverage of local environmental issues where you could make a difference, and keep in mind the positive developments that may not get quite so much airtime.
Good Newspaper

Connect with your community

Groups have sprung up the world over to meet the rising tide of climate anxiety. Why not dial in to a virtual climate café, or join the ‘buy nothing’ community and connect with neighbours via the gift economy? Even closer to home, try sharing your concerns with family and friends – you might be surprised at how many of those around you are feeling a similar sense of climate-related doom and gloom.

Let go of perfection

There’s always more we can do as individuals to positively impact the planet – which can add to a sense that we’re never doing enough. Remember you don’t need an entirely solar panel-clad roof or in-depth knowledge of environmental science to be a climate activist: committing to simple lifestyle changes can go a long way.

Channel the anxiety

Use difficult emotions to drive your climate activism. Whether you take steps to minimise your own carbon footprint, volunteer for an environmental charity or lend your support to a petition, taking a ‘less thinking, more doing’ approach is undoubtedly the most effective way to keep despondency at bay.

While these tips can be useful, we know that anxiety is a serious issue, so please do speak to your GP or visit Mind for further help.