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And the most (and least!) stressed states in the country are…


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Photo: Stocksy/Denni Van Huis

No one is immune to stress, especially millennials. The proverbial bogeyman of the modern world is all too common and pervasive in a world where “I’m so busy” contests break out with alarming regularity. Of course, you can learn to mitigate and manage your stress levels by figuring out if it’s actually anxiety that you’re experiencing, learning a number of coping mechanisms, and figuring out just how much your zip code is contributing to the situation. (It turns out: a lot.)

According to WalletHub, stress levels have been rising among certain demographics of Americans (mainly women) since 2016, and the trend is reportedly driven by a combination of factors such as financial issues, uneasiness about politics (and the future of the country), and uncertainty about health care. Using 38 indicators across four key dimensions (stress related to work, money, family, and health and safety), the company examined which states have been hit the hardest (and the least hard) by stress.

If you live in Louisiana, New Mexico, West Virginia, Mississippi, or Nevada, you may want to stock up on your essential oils and memorize de-stressing tactics.

If you live in Louisiana, New Mexico, West Virginia, Mississippi, or Nevada, you may want to stock up on your essential oils and memorize de-stressing tactics, since they were found to be the five most stressed states in the country. On the other side of the spectrum were Minnesota (at No. 1 on the least-stressed list), North Dakota, Utah, Iowa, and South Dakota. Coincidentally (or not…), Minnesota also ranked as the top state for women to live their best life.

But what exactly makes these states so low-key? In part, it might be related to sleep, given that Iowa and the Dakotas were among the states that got the most hours of shut-eye. Furthermore, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Utah were three of the five states with the lowest percentage of residents in fair or poor health. It’s also interesting to note that the average number of hours worked per state didn’t seem to significantly correlate with the findings: Though they’re both in the top-five low-stress states, Utah made the list of five states with the fewest hours worked per week, yet North Dakota ranked as one with the most hours worked per week.

So if it seems like you can’t escape the pressures of modern life, you might want to try a nap, and if all else fails, take a road trip to check out the low-stress atmosphere in a different area of the country. Here’s a list of the most wish-listed Airbnb in each state to get you started on your (carefree) journey.

Here’s what you need to know about a study that claims stress is contagious. And then some good news: Women handle stress better than men do.

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