Some may argue that stress is prevalent in all areas of the world, but most would agree that big cities, with their concentrations of traffic, unemployment, and pollution, feature more stress than most other areas. While Los Angeles is usually at the top of lists of stressed-out cities, Chicago has had the dubious honor of being labeled America’s most stressful city by Forbes for the past two years (1) (2). Forbes’s stressed-out city list for 2010 will come out soon, and while Chicago may not be at the top again, massage therapy will remain a constant for Windy City citizens looking to combat their stress and its harmful effects.
Forbes generally looks at issues economically, so, when determining Chicago to be the most stressful city in America, one of the main factors behind this statistic was the city’s unemployment rate, which has been consistently higher than the rest of the nation (1) (2). Fortunately, the unemployment rate has fallen in Chicago, but it’s still a couple of percentage points above the national average today (3).
Aside from high rates of unemployment, Forbes also places Chicago atop its most stress-out cities list due to its poor air quality, falling home values, and generally non-sunny weather. Furthermore, Forbes mentions that stress is having an impact on the citizens of Chicago, with the high levels of stress leading to less sleep and higher levels of anxiety.
Fortunately, this is where massage therapy can help. Major health and medical organizations in America have shown that massage therapy can reduce levels of stress, anxiety, and the harmful effects they bring (4) (5). Moreover, there are many great places to receive a Chicago chair massage, table massage, or other massage therapy service, and one of Associated Content’s best contributors has already compiled a list with reviews of spa services in the city (6).
Other factors, too, make Chicago a good place to be when dealing with stress, as people can make a trip to the beach or Wrigley Field to help alleviate some of the stress and anxiety they may be experiencing.
So, if you’re not fortunate enough to work at a business that features a Chicago office massage provider for its employees, or if you can’t find a job generally, there should be, at the very least, the option of going to the beach to relax. As research on anxiety and stress suggests, relieving stress with such an activity is important to do. Let’s just hope the Windy City’s weather and traffic won’t be too bad on the way to your stress-busting destination.