🔗 Fidget spinners, weighted blankets, and the rise of anxiety consumerism

It turns out we are anxious as hell, and we’re trying to buy our way out of it. But none of it will solve the underlying problems:

So, yes, meditation apps may help us meditate, and meditation may reduce anxiety. Weighted blankets may calm us down long enough to fall and stay asleep, which will help us feel better the next day. And fidget devices can distract us so that instead of ruminating on negative thoughts, we’re expending mental energy on something physical.

But no product will solve the underlying causes of anxiety, or ADHD, or obsessive-compulsive disorder, or autism, whether it’s a $5 gas-station fidget spinner or a $250 blanket meticulously designed and focus-grouped by advertising professionals. That’s a far bigger task, involving: therapy (often difficult to access), medication (often expensive), or complete lifestyle overhauls that involve fitting exercise and healthier habits into our daily lives (often really, really hard).

Rian van der Merwe Elezea // The B-Sides