Election day is finally here. Without a doubt, this has been one of the wildest election periods in the history of our country. It's been full of scandals, lies, outrageous lashing out by the Presidential candidates at each other and full of "he said-she said" moments. But it's finally almost over.
For many Americans, a heated election is more than just determining our next leaders and the laws that govern society. A heated election is also a very stressful time of seriously deciding who and what to vote for; deciding whether to stay quiet or publicly voice our opinions; defending those positions on social media, at work, with our families and in social settings; and making time to get to the polls.
If this election has left you stressed out and feeling like you've been hit by a bus, there are some coping mechanisms that can help you feel better as we elect our next President.
Accept the outcome
No matter if you are for Clinton, Trump, Johnson or anyone else, decide to accept the results of the election whether your candidate wins or not. There's nothing you can do once the results are final so there's no point is getting angry or upset. Instead of jumping on any bandwagons for a recount or new vote, stop seeing it as the Republicans vs. the Democrats, but rather adopt a spirit of unity and togetherness for the betterment of our country. We're all stronger when we come together as one.
Immerse yourself in something you enjoy
For those who have been following every step of the election these past few months, it can feel like a letdown when it's all said and done. What do you do now? What do you follow or talk about now? Find somewhere else to invest your time like a sport or a hobby you enjoy. This is good advice whether you are heavily involved in the election, your job or anything else. The mind needs a rest and recovery strategy.
Tune it out
The post-election news coverage is going to go on for weeks no matter who wins the election, but you can choose to tune it out. Again, the results are final and you can't change the outcome. Make a commitment to stop watching the TV coverage or reading about it on social media. Getting away and letting your mind rest will lead to clarity, creativity and stress reduction.
Exercise is not only good for you, it is one of the best stress busters out there whether the election or anything else has got the best of you. The best part: you don't have to become a gym rat and spend hours a day at it. Even just a simple 20 to 30-minute brisk walk can do the trick and drastically reduce your stress. Exercise is one activity that everyone should immerse themselves in.
Talk it out
If the election has you stressed out or you are suffering from the post-election blues, talk it out with a friend, family member, someone you trust or a mental health professional. There's no reason at all to keep your feelings bottled up inside. That will only cause more stress. Many people are afraid to seek help because they wonder what others will think of them. They are scared they will appear weak in the eyes of their friends, family, children, coworkers, etc. Stress is unhealthy and you'll feel a lot better when you release your anxieties and get them out.
Maybe there's someone in your life who has the total opposite political views as you. It could be anyone: a parent, friend, coworker, boss, teacher or even your spouse. Maybe this election period has caused some friction in your relationship which has caused you a great deal of stress. It's time to forgive each other and make peace. You'll feel a lot better when you're operating from love and abundance instead of anger and hate.
Learn from it
Your stress levels are up, so what can you learn so that doesn't happen in the future? Perhaps you took things a little too far or personally? Did you say things to friends and family members you shouldn't have said and you wish you could have taken back? What can you do differently next time, whether it's the next Presidential election or any event that causes stress? Learn from the past so you can be better in the future.
Vote at off times
Some polling stations get very crowded and it's not uncommon for people to have to wait in long lines for two and three hours. This unfortunately causes many people to skip voting all together or simply stresses them out. If you haven't taken advantage of early voting, try and get to the polls during non-peak times when you won't have to wait.
No matter what has happened these past few months, everyone should feel better in knowing that it's almost over and life will hopefully go back to normal as this election comes and goes. Stress isn't healthy and it can have a dramatic impact on our lives. Don't take it lightly and remember there is no need to suffer with excess stress. There are plenty of ways to reduce stress be it from an election or anything else. You might not be able to control the world around you, but you can choose how you decide to react to it.