If you’re feeling stressed over the upcoming election or anxiously awaiting official results, you’re not alone!
Nearly 70% of Americans report feeling apprehensive and concern over the 2020 presidential election. That’s up from 52% in 2016! There’s now even a term for it — Election Stress Disorder (ESD). Why are so many of us suffering from ESD?
As my Chapman University colleague, Dean Gail Stearns, rightfully states, “That anxiety you’re feeling right now — it’s not your fault.”
To help you navigate ESD over the next few days — and weeks — please enjoy the video and resources below to help you cope with election anxiety.
TEN TIPS FOR COPING WITH ELECTION ANXIETY
- Acknowledge your fears, anxieties and concerns. Your emotions are real, so honor what you feel. Write them in your journal. Share them with others. Invite creativity. Discover, imagine, engage your hopes and fears, the beauty and ugliness of our world. Write, read, paint, sing, dance, soar.
- Take a breather Breathe. Breathe. Breathe some more. Take time in your day—at any moment—to take five to ten, slow, deep breaths. Science now affirms that doing so will regulate your body’s “stress-response” system and boost your “relaxation-response” system to feel calm and centered.
- Be adaptive, not reactive to change If your outside world feels “out of control,” focus on your inner world. The concept of “neuroplasticity” reveals how you have the ability to rewire and retrain the brain to be more adaptive to change. Focus on what you can manage. Let go of what you can’t. Activities—such as meditation, practicing gratitude, or mindful breathing—empower you to be less reactive to change and uncertainty.
Stay Safe. Stay Strong. Stay Calm. Stay Connected.
Dr. Jay Kumar”Your Happiness Professor”
Author, Science of a Happy Brain
Instructor, “Investing in Happiness” (GenConnectU online course)