A consultant psychiatrist with Osun State University Teaching Hospital, Dr. Adeoye Oyewole, has said lack of proper stress management kills journalists discreetly.
Oyewole said Nigerian journalists carry Nigeria on their shoulders at a mental cost and struggle daily to gather information despite humiliating cultural and bureaucratic bottlenecks.
According to him, the physical and mental stress they are exposed to daily created a mental disequilibrium which manifests psychologically and physically which, if not managed properly, could lead to a mental shutdown.
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He disclosed this on Monday in Osogbo at a seminar organised by Fountain University for practising journalists and final year Mass Communication students of the institution.
Oyewole added that newshounds need not just relationship support to overcome stress, but financial support to manage the stress that accompanies the calling.
He said: “There is a need for journalists to be proactive in managing time, value relationships and possess the will to break through barriers to achieve daily goals.
“Financial freedom is also essential. No journalists should be underpaid in discharging his or her responsibility as a professional to meet the daily demands both personally and as a family. A journalist must be able to meet his daily diet and supplement demand to be physically and mentally ready for the rigours of the job.”
Speaking at the event, former Managing Director of Monitor Newspaper, Dr Liad Tella, said what complicated the stress of professional journalists is non-commensurate pay for work done, saying reducing journalism to struggling for a brown envelope at an event could be mentally depressing.