When we think of a stress free life we imagine lying on a beach in Hawaii, or a peaceful cabin in Canada’s forests. No offence to Germany, but it’s not exactly top of mind when we’re talking no-stress scenes. But maybe it should be, because Germany is actually home to the least stressed people in the world!
A study done by ZipJet did a deep dive into factors that make life tense, like overcrowding, unemployment, equality, debt, health (physical and mental) pollution and climate. Basically, all the little day-to-day things that make us anxious, and sometimes can add up to a BIG something.
Looking at 150 cities worldwide they found that Germany’s Stuttgart was the least stressful place in the world. In fact, Germany was the country that had the most appearances in the top ten! Joining Stuttgart was Hanover (3rd), Munich (5th) and Hamburg (joint 9th with Graz, Austria).
We don’t know about you but whatever is in the water in Germany we want some of it! Stress sucks, and if we look at Germany it clearly doesn’t have to be a part of modern life. So what’s their secret? Glad you asked!
Stuttgart ranked so high thanks to its overall health, gender equality (win!) and purchasing power (meaning your wage and the cost of goods is favourable). A PR professional from Stuttgart, David Moos, told Lonely Planet that he can see why his city was number one: ‘The feeling of security in the city, both financial and in the sense of personal safety, is also a great comfort’.
Stuttgart was also recognised as having lots of outdoor spaces and easy access to nature, with vineyards, forests and fields all close by. ‘It’s no surprise Stuttgart scored highly for open spaces and these really have a noticeable effect on stress’, David added, ‘The ability to feel less enclosed can help you to not feeling stifled, and personally I find this reduces anxiety.’
Getting outdoors and enjoying the natural wonders of the world has a proven ability to reduce stress, so if you take one thing away from Germany it’s to go for a bush walk ASAP!