By Melanie Stewart
We all have stress and anxiety, it’s part of being human. Then 2020 happened. Nothing like a worldwide pandemic to change your life and dial up the anxiety levels—working/taking classes from home, social distancing, health issues, not seeing friends/family in person, and it all happened in an election year. Holidays can be stressful anytime, and we’ve never experienced them in a pandemic.
LiveGreen recently starting hearing more people talk about eco-anxiety. Eco-anxiety generally describes chronic/severe anxiety related to humans’ relationship with the environment. In 2017, the American Psychiatric Association (APA) described eco-anxiety as “chronic fear of environmental doom.”
We have talked about the physical health effects and continuing impacts of climate change and the APA noted that it takes a toll on mental health too: “Climate change-induced severe weather and other natural disasters have the most immediate effects on mental health in the form of the trauma and shock due to personal injuries, loss of a loved one, damage to or loss of personal property or even the loss of livelihood.” These changes and the fear that they will happen, understandably, wears on people.
There’s lots of talk about taking care of your physical health, but everyone needs to take care of their mental health too. As such, LiveGreen’s December webinar will feature UNMC’s Dr. Steven Wengel and he will discuss practical tips for managing stress and anxiety now, and as we head into the holidays.
Dr. Wengel is originally from Omaha and attended UNL and UNMC. He completed his psychiatry residency and geriatric psychiatry fellowship training at Creighton University and UNMC. He has been practicing geriatric psychiatry since 1991, and is an active and enthusiastic teacher of students and residents. Dr. Wengel has also served UNMC in several administrative roles, including clerkship director and department chair. In 2018 he became UNMC and UNO’s first Assistant Vice Chancellor for Campus Wellness, and in this role he is developing strategies to reduce stress and burnout in students, staff, faculty, and healthcare professionals. His vision is to improve the physical, psychological, and social wellbeing of all who work and learn in the health care world, the academic environment, and the community at large.
Please join us via zoom on Wednesday, December 2nd from 10-10:30am for this webinar, which is open to the public. If you can’t attend, a recording will be posted on the LiveGreen website.
Please click the link to join the webinar. If asked for a passcode 517371