2020 has been a year for the books. With the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and the upcoming presidential election, Americans are feeling stress and anxiety more than ever before. Know that it is normal and valid to be anxious about the outcome of the November 3rd election.
We turned to our Chief Medical Officer, Mimi Winsberg, MD, for her advice on managing feelings of stress and anxiety right now. If you are struggling, here are Dr. Winsberg’s four tips to help manage election day anxiety.
Four tips to help manage election day anxiety
1. Recognize that anxiety is normal right now
As we enter a highly divisive election, uncertainty, and fear abounds. This presidential race is exceptionally polarizing, and there’s a multitude of factors related to this particular election that can contribute to and exacerbate feelings of stress and anxiety. According to the APA’s Stress in America survey, nearly 70% of U.S. adults say that the presidential election is a significant source of stress. Know that feeling anxious about the results of the election is completely normal and valid.
2. Your level of engagement is up to you, but have a plan in place
Feelings of anxiety can be relieved by having a plan in place. Create one for before, during, and after the election. Think about how you’re going to vote, how you’re planning to watch the returns, and curate a few news sources that you trust in advance. Think about the environment you want to be in and who you want to be with when you hear the election results. Finally, think through what your contingency plan will be based on the results.
3. Stay connected
Surround yourself with like-minded, empathetic people who understand your feelings and what you’re going through. There is a sense of camaraderie right now, as everyone is going through this election season at the same time. This is an opportunity to share your fears and listen to the fears of other people, too. Connecting with supportive friends and family members who care about you can help you get through stressful and anxiety-inducing times.
4. Don’t forget to prioritize self-care
With so much uncertainty and stress surrounding the election, it’s helpful to focus on the things you can control—such as prioritizing your self-care. Make sure to get a good night’s sleep, eat nutritious foods, stay active, and take breaks from social media.
One final note
There is a lot of uncertainty in today’s political climate, but know that there are ways to manage the stress and anxiety that go along with it. If you are voting in person tomorrow, be sure to wear a mask, practice social distancing, and be safe. Finally, if you are struggling right now, know that there is always help available to you. Click here to get connected with one of our providers today.