The election season is about to reach its climax and there is hardly any escaping it. With the outcome expected to have an enormous impact on the future of America and the greater world, it can be difficult not to feel the stress with November 3rd around the corner. On Monday, our Optimist emissaries received an article detailing 8 grounding questions you can ask yourself to soothe election anxiety.
Following up on that theme, we want to share 4 strategies to help you cope with the uncertainty and stress that many of us are feeling with Election Day approaching. You can find these coping-strategies below.
Prepare mentally for delayed results: Even though Election Day is less than a week away, it’s important that you prepare for the possibility of delayed results. The fact of the matter is it could be days or a couple of weeks before we have a clear answer. For that reason, you should plan how you will spend the time waiting for results. If watching TV, scanning the news, stresses you out, don’t do it. Instead, do something that brings you joy: for example, taking a physically distanced walk with a friend, going for a bike ride, or reading a book. When we plan ahead, we can reduce uncertainty and maintain a calm mindset until the results arrive.
Double down on stress-reducing habits: Eating healthy, exercising, and enjoying social connections can all work to reduce stress. At a time where stress can be high, double down on these stress-reducing habits to create a buffer between you and election anxiety.
Replace scrolling with something nourishing: We can’t control what’s happening in the news, but we can control how much exposure we have to the news. Instead of trying to keep up with an ever-breaking news story, try putting away the phone and engaging in activities that nourish you such as reading books or listening to music. You’ll probably find yourself much more relaxed when you unplug from the news and your attention-grabbing devices.
Look for signs of hope: We all find signs of hope in different things. In the source article from NPR, the story mentions Dalyn Allen, a data analyst in Baltimore who is Black and finds hope in the recent public outcry against racism, white supremacy, and police brutality. To help you calm election stress, try to find the developments that give you hope for the country moving forward.