Westminster is London's most stressed borough, according to some pointedly unscientific research from SpaSeekers. A scan of mentions of stress and anxiety across social media platforms between January and September 2018, found almost 13,000 mentions inside Westminster.
By the same method, the least stressed borough is Barking and Dagenham, with just 34 cases within the same timeframe.
Why is Westminster so stressed?
Well duh. It's Westminster: home of MPs, Brexit, the Supreme Court, Brexit, the MoD, a number of high profile hospitals, Brexit and M&M's World. Of course it's effing stressful.
On the other hand, 'Westminster' is also shorthand for British government and democracy as a whole — so by default gets considerably more social airtime than, say, 'Newham' (which came 20th in the survey). Actually, if you search #happiness #westminster on Twitter you get multiple results, whereas #happiness #newham returns zilch. With that research, you could conclude: New Research Shows Westminster is Infinitely Happier than Newham. It's almost as if you can conclude what you like with these surveys...
And why is Barking and Dagenham so chill?
The sprawling meadows of Eastbrookend Country Park? The whimsical joys of Moby Dick crazy golf? The therapeutic process of screaming your lungs out at Dagenham & Redbridge FC when they inevitably lose? We would say the swinging sex knees-ups at Paradise Spa — but apparently that's now shut.
Or maybe the good folk of Barking and Dagenham actually ARE stressed out by the 34.2% unemployment rate, potentially 'disastrous' fallout of Brexit on the Ford plant (cheers for that, Westminster), and the longest 999 response times in London — but are simply not gabbing about it on social media.
From all the uncertainty from SpaSeekers' research, we can conclude only one thing: we could all do with a lovely relaxing spa experience. Shame that Barking and Dagenham no longer has one.