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NEW YORK — Half of Americans say that the COVID-19 pandemic has been so stressful they worry they’ll never fully be able to de-stress, even after it’s all over.

A survey of 2,000 Americans finds stress levels have been so bad since 2020 that 25 percent would go as far as escaping to a cabin in the woods by themselves in order to get away from the daily stresses of life. Another 15 percent would need to be even more remote, choosing a desert island as their de-stressing sanctuary. Crucially, respondents add they’d have to be totally alone to truly be able to de-stress.


The study, conducted by OnePoll and commissioned by CBDistillery, also finds that for many, getting rid of stress is all about the finer things in life. In fact, 35 percent of respondents think a trip to a luxury resort would do the trick.

De-stressing still takes work

The average American feels they would need 10 days in their ideal location to completely de-stress. This is borne out by the numbers, too; 55 percent admit their current stress levels have left them feeling burnt out.

Researchers also discovered that stress has a major impact on personal relationships. Seven out of 10 Americans say they get upset or frustrated with someone in their household for no reason at least once a week. These spats aren’t surprising though, as 51 percent admit they find it difficult to de-stress because they live with others.

“Sometimes it’s the smallest things that can trigger stress,” says a spokesperson for CBDistillery in a statement. “Our results found 45 percent of respondents admitted their coping mechanisms for dealing with stress aren’t the healthiest – which can then create a cycle of stress, making these issues worse.”


With all of this in mind, it’s no wonder 46 percent say they’re desperate for a more effective way to handle stress. Nearly three in five respondents believe just having one extra hour of free time to do nothing every day would help their stress levels immensely.

Entertainment is the top coping mechanism for pandemic stress

In attempts to find their happy place and find peace, some of the top coping mechanisms Americans use include listening to music (45%), taking a walk (38%), binge-watching TV (33%), and exercising (29%). Other common coping mechanisms include cuddling with a pet, taking deep breaths (both 29%), eating a snack (28%), reading a book (26%), and playing video games (24%).

“It’s clear Americans are desperate to find a solution for their stress,” the spokesperson adds. “Whether it’s grabbing your favorite snack, taking a walk – there are so many things you can try until you find what works for you.”

About Chris Melore

Chris Melore has been a writer, researcher, editor, and producer in the New York-area since 2006. He won a local Emmy award for his work in sports television in 2011.

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