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Washington Residents More Stressed Out Than Rest of US, Says Website

Serenity now? More like serenity never, according to real-estate blog Movoto.
You right now, according to the internet. Photograph via Shutterstock.

Feeling overworked, underappreciated, and altogether disgusted with life? You should be, now that DC is ranked as the most stressed-out city in the United States.

Movoto, one of those websites that ranks places based on click-inducing metrics, says Washington is full of “countless normal people”—for example, people not directly involved with the government, government contractors, or media—who are “exposed to supernormal levels of stress.” The site reviewed cities according to commute times, unemployment, cost of living, the number of hours worked per week by an average resident, population density, and the percentage of a person’s earnings that go toward rent.

The District was named the most stressful city overall even without being No. 1 in any individual category. (It was ranked 35th for crimes per 100,000 residents, for instance.) A few of its results are particularly burdensome, like the 40.1 hours an average resident works per week, or its ninth-worst commute time of 33 minutes.

The East Coast in general is not a serene place, Movoto found. New York was ranked the second most stressful; Miami, Philadelphia, Jersey City, and Newark, New Jersey, were all among the ten most stressed-out cities, too.

If there’s one relaxing thing to take away from this ranking, it’s that Movoto at least had the respect to rank DC against other cities, rather than against states, as most of these arbitrary, hair-yanking ratings do. Just writing and reading about observed stress levels is nerve-racking, so here’s a calming video of lion cubs pouncing around at the National Zoo.

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Staff Writer

Benjamin Freed joined Washingtonian in August 2013 and covers politics, business, and media. He was previously the editor of DCist and has also written for Washington City Paper, the New York Times, the New Republic, Slate, and BuzzFeed. He lives in Adams Morgan.