Every client and student I’ve worked with since the election is dealing with some post election distress. It ranges from devastation at the election result, a family rift over political differences, fears for safety because of racial slurs and hate speech, anxiety over the uncertainties ahead, or simply media fatigue.
If you’re experiencing any of these feelings, you’re not alone.
No matter which candidate you supported, this election season and the turmoil it has unleashed, has taken a great toll on each of us, and our nation as a whole. I believe it’s important to recognize this fact and make conscious choices to recenter ourselves so that we can get on with the business of living and contributing to society in meaningful ways.
In speaking with people, and dealing with my own process, I’ve identified 7 ways to ease your emotional distress right now.
7 Ways To Ease Your Post Election Distress
- Recognize and name your feelings, whatever they are. Apathy, terror, isolation, anger, frustration, regret, sadness…. be deeply honest with yourself.
- Choose NOT to make any big decisions about your life right now. You’re too raw, too tender. You’re in a process that isn’t all of you or your life. Don’t make decisions from this temporary place. Your feelings are real, but they’re not forever.
- Recommit to doing the simplest things that make you feel grounded, peaceful, loved, and relaxed. Walk the dog. Make a pot of soup. Watch the moon rise. What says “home” to you? Do that.
- Let yourself be shaken up by all that has happened. Why? Because maybe, just maybe, this is why it all happened. Maybe we needed to wake up and realize that it’s up to US to create the home-relationships-life-neighborhood-society-country-world we say we want. No one person can do it for us, we need to do it together. Be curious and patient as you look for the lessons for yourself in all this.
- Don’t think you have to run right out today and organize a rally or run for congress. If that’s in your heart to do then go for it. It is also OK if this is a time to reflect on what’s most important to you and how you, specifically, want to contribute to the world around you. I believe this is an invitation to each of us to step outside our old comfort zones, reach across old divides, and each be an instrument of peace in our own way. Take the time to figure out your way and then do it.
- Check your self care routine and reinstate good habits. Especially with the holidays coming right up, now — today — is a great time to recommit to the things you know keep you healthy and centered. You need to take care of yourself, period, and especially if you want to help others in a sustainable way.
- Give yourself permission to take a break from the media, including social media. You need to find your center again. It is harder to do that when you’re hearing about a new scandal, new policy change, or new hate-prompted action every day. You can also choose who you spend time with right now and surround yourself with people that help you regain your equilibrium.
And finally —
Did you hear about the safety pin movement? It started in Britain as a way for people to show others they were safe. These people are safe to sit with on the bus and safe to talk to. The safety pin is a way to say to the most vulnerable of us that there are people who care and are willing to stand up for them. I put on a safety pin the other day, realizing that it was a symbol not only for what I intend to do, but for what I’ve always done in my work — make a safe place for people to be themselves and feel accepted.
If you need someone to support you in processing your post election distress, fears, reactions, or next steps, consider scheduling a phone session with me for Life Coaching. Sessions are $85 for 75 minutes.
It’s easy to schedule online by clicking HERE.
Have no doubt, I’ll be wearing my safety pin.
All My Best,