Navigating your stress both before and after an election is always important, but perhaps more this year, with an ongoing abundance of external stressors. According to a poll by the American Psychological Association (APA, 10/7/2020), 68% of American adults feel the election is a “significant source of stress in their lives.”
Here are some tips according to the Crisis Text Line for both pre and post-election coping:
- Set boundaries for the news: set time limits for news consumption rather than scrolling aimlessly.
- Unplug from Social Media: clear your thoughts and take a break to reset your feelings and prevent screen burnout.
- Expect Difficult Conversations: talking to others may cause frustration, and it is okay to walk away if the conversation becomes combative rather than productive. Follow the conversation with some coping such as deep breathing or taking a walk.
- Acknowledge and accept your feelings: recognize and accept your feelings, allowing yourself to process everything.
- Talk to others: try not to isolate yourself and have a conversation about it with someone you trust.
- Listen to others: validate feelings of others and try asking open ended questions to understand them better.
- Write it down: if you don’t feel like talking about it, write it down or use the notes app on your phone to unravel some of your thoughts and feelings.
The APA has additional helpful ways to manage your stress related to the election by clicking here. Remember, you are not alone! Feel free to reach out to the counseling office or visit Let’s Talk for a confidential resource and place to process your reactions to the election. You can also have a confidential conversation via text by texting “Share” to 741-741.