Election Anxiety: Coping Skills for the Next Couple of Days

"It's almost over!"

I heard those words from a friend across the street the other day as he got home from work. He'd been feeling anxiety over this year's election - as have a lot of other people, according to news reports.

That got me to wondering: how can people who really are anxious about this event cope? The rhetoric hasn't exactly been statesman-like, so that makes some just cringe. But how do mental health professionals suggest getting through the next few days? I stumbled across some ideas in a recent Los Angeles Times article. Here's a few things they suggest:

  1. Turn off the TV. Reading your newspaper vs. watching TV provokes a different response. If you can't turn the TV off, at least change the channel to something less stressful.
  2. Write down your fears, then address them. Do research on your worst fears and remember things cannot change overnight or very easily, in many cases. You might even find some fears are unfounded.
  3. Only if it's a must, ask your doctor for medication. If your daily functioning is severely impacted by this election, it can have a big effect on your health and your relationships. Talk to your doctor about it.

Take a deep breath and know that this will be over soon. Life goes on, and we're all still here working together day in and day out. Take care of yourself and remember that life can be rich in love. Reach out for it.