Hyper Fatigue

Consumers are experiencing hyper fatigue as a result of the pandemic, technology, and financial stress. Many are trying to reduce screen time and find meaning and purpose through nature, community, and wellness practices. Brands need to provide practical solutions to offer escapism, and establish healthy connections in technology, wellness, and leisure spaces. Consumers are managing stress through diet, exercise, daily rituals, and spending time outside.

This trend originates from the report:

MINTEL - Global Consumer Trends

Consumers will try to cut through the noise and connect with what matters to them. The pandemic impacted—and continues to impact —consumers differently, causing uncertainty, stress, financial issues, and major life shifts. At the same time, reduced FOMO (‘fear of missing out’) and being forced to slow down gave some consumers the chance to re- evaluate their lives.

The pause on new content creation, the comfort of returning to old favourites and having time to appreciate the tactile experience and dimensionality of products were among the highlights of spending more time at home. But, of course, no two consumer experiences were the same. Technology has grown to play a large role in consumers’ lives, and some are concerned about how increased usage impacts their lives, with many seeing it affecting their mental well-being negatively and wishing to reduce their screen time.

Technology is also advancing at a fast pace, but people remain unconvinced of its actual benefits in spaces like the metaverse, NFTs or cryptocurrencies, which can make them feel disengaged. In many regions, consumers are emerging from the pandemic into the cost-of-living crisis, with many experiencing financial strain over inflation and rising energy prices. As the economic forecast appears negative in many regions, lower-income and even financially secure consumers will want to prepare for impending changes.

What’s happening next: consumers will find meaning, solace and a restored sense of purpose in reconnecting with their surroundings, their communities and themselves. Over the next two years, expect to see a polarized response to relaxation and unwinding in the wellness space; retreats that offer a digital detox and the opportunity for consumers to immerse themselves in nature will appeal to some, while others navigate their well-being through wellness apps. Charitable initiatives and community-based projects born out of inspiring brand collaborations will play an intrinsic part in countering fatigue levels, empowering people to take control, and helping them build a positive outlook amid financial adversity.

In response to consumers’ financial pressures, brands should continue to offer solutions to manage costs and tap into their demand for escapism, offering them opportunities to collaborate and establish new connections. While mental health led the wellness trajectory, particularly after the pandemic, moving forward, consumers will want to discover more about how to protect their minds and bodies, developing a curiosity for spiritual and ritual practices as well as emerging wellness solutions that are on the horizon. The demand for convenient options and interactive experiences will only continue to grow, meaning that technology will continue to play a vital and influential part in consumer experiences.

However, in five years, brands will need to establish boundaries to bring order to the influx of information and initiatives to enable consumers to form healthy connections with resources in the technology, wellness and leisure spaces. Moving forward, functionality will go a long way in serving the underserved. Digital advancements have already made an impact and carved out a space in the tech segment, which we will see increase as many consumers are looking to brands to offer practical solutions.

How are people managing stress? 71% say managing diet/exercise is important to manage stress. 62% say daily rituals are an important way to lift their mood. 55% say they spend time outside to tackle stress.