6 simple tips to ease eco-anxiety

View all news

Taking action is one of the best ways to ease eco-anxiety. Tips for steps you can take yourself, and how to join with family and friends to help make change happen.

As the climate crisis looms, naturally a rising number of people across all generations are suffering from eco-anxiety – feelings of stress and fear about the future of the planet. Our 6 tips on how to tackle eco-anxiety are things you can start doing right now. 

1. Find a local climate action community

Sharing your fears and anxieties with like minded people has the potential to tranform feelings of isolation and helplessness into inspired and passionate action. The climate crisis can feel overwhelming and impossible to tackle alone, however channeling energy into a wider group and spending time within a community has the ability to affect positive change within and without. To keep up to date with Friends of the Earth's community events and volunteering opportunities be sure to sign up to our newsletter at www.friendsoftheearth.ie/sign-up

Friends of the Earth also supports One Future - a network of local climate campaign groups and individuals who want to campaign on climate issues across Ireland. One Future local groups are working on a range of issues such as green transport, opposing new fossil gas infrastructure and campaigning for joint solutions to energy poverty and energy pollution. If you have any questions about One Future we can put you in touch with Rosi, our Network Development Coordinator to find out more. Sign up to the One Future mailing list here to get involved and connect with your local One Future group.

WhatsApp Image 2022-11-07 at 15.10.58 (1)

2. Spend time in nature

Spending time outside in nature can help improve your mood and can be good for eco-anxiety too. Research shows that time outside in nature is good for our physical and mental health. The more people get to know their local green spaces and the wildlife that lives there, the more they’ll want to protect them. Reconnecting with the natural pace of nature can also help calm the feelings of stress and fear associated with eco-anxiety.


3. Get into the body

Finding little moments throughout the day to reconnect with our body can do wonders for our overall mental health. Simply taking a minute or two to pause and breathe, finding a 10 minute meditation or yoga online or going for a run…there are a multitude of ways to do it - find a way that works best for you. These regular, small techniques naturally produce endorphins and calm a busy mind. Our body is a part of nature, so connecting to it is as important as connecting with nature outside.

sunrise with a few foe jackets.JPG

4. Reuse, rewear and mindfully repair

Save money, get creative, and enjoy items guilt free with no fear of harming the planet or endorsing harmful labor practices. Charity shops and second-hand clothes apps are great places to find some new outfit inspiration. But it doesn't stop at fashion - local charity shops, vintage stores or even yard sales and swaps with friends are treasure troves for unique items with a story to tell. Bringing items to your local charity shop or selling them online is also an amazing way to clear space in your home and potentially earn a bit of money too! Additionally - taking time with a needle and thread can be a beautiful way to slow down and lose yourself in a mindful activity if any of your favorite items need repair. 

5. Curate your social media to suit you

Social media - harnessed correctly - can be an amazing tool to help us feel better and keep on track of hopeful actions taking place locally and nationally. Take the reins of what you consume online and unfollow anything that triggers feelings of gloom, stress or temptation to make unnecessary purchases, and follow accounts that make you feel good. You have the power! There are so many groups and initiatives out there doing amazing things. As they say, where attention goes, energy flows. Make sure you're paying attention to the things that are good for your mental health and the planet.



5. Watch our webinar 'Hopeful Chats about Climate Change'

Click here to watch our webinar ‘Hopeful Chats about Climate Change’. People left the webinar feeling very hopeful - and it continues to give us hope when we think back about it now! Dr Cara Augustenborg did a super job of chairing the discussion and spoke from her own experience as a climate scientist, activist and mother.

Prof. John Sharry spoke about the importance of facing our emotions in response to the climate crisis and how we can channel these emotions into positive action to help the environment around us and to push for system change.

Youth climate activist, Aiyana Helder, spoke about her activism and the importance of having a support network, such as being involved in an activist group, to support our resilience and personal wellbeing to prevent burnout.

Author, Oisín McGann, talked about his work running storytelling workshops at schools. These workshops were a way to engage young people on the topic of climate change. Oisín also shared his motivations for writing 'A Short, Hopeful Guide to Climate Change'.

It's conversations and projects like these that really give us hope. We hope that watching it will lift your spirits too. And lastly, remember that sustainability starts within ourselves, and taking care of ourselves is just as important as taking care of the planet.