It’s Not Just You – Politics is Stressing out America’s Youth

“I can’t sleep.” – A 16-year-old “It’s been extremely hard to concentrate.” – A 22-year-old “I got behind in school.” – A 22-year-old “I feel like I could get killed any second.”- An 18-year-old “I’m nervous about whether I need to go to school wearing a gas mask.”- A 14-year-old “I’m scared for my safety.” – A 15-year-old The current political climate has been difficult for Americans of all political stripes. People have been so stressed that, just before the 2016 presidential election, the American Psychological Association released a list of coping strategies to help adults deal with election-related stress. The focus has been on adults, yet teens and college-aged Americans are exposed to the same headlines. Turns out – youth are feeling it, too. In our survey of 80 youth across the nation, published Feb. 13, we found that a majority experienced physical or emotional distress before and after the …

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Americans are Saving Energy by Staying at Home

Information and communication technologies are radically transforming modern lifestyles. They are redefining our concept of “space” by turning homes and coffee shops into workspaces. (This article was written in a coffee shop.) Instead of going to the theater, many people sit in the comfort of their homes and stream movies. Online purchasing of food, groceries and consumer products has transformed shopping. Personal interactions, from the casual to the intimate, are increasingly virtual instead of face to face. How can we measure the impacts of these changes? Time diaries are one tool for quantifying lifestyles and trends. A time diary is a survey in which people list what they do and for how long, from waking up in the morning to going to bed at night. Along with our colleague Roger Chen, we analyzed data from 2003-2012 from the American Time Use Survey, which is conducted annually by the U.S. Bureau …

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