Election Stress Support

Election Stress Support

Oct 29, 2020

Counseling Services

Elections Got You Stressed? You are not alone.
FamilyMeans Counseling & Therapy provides some tips on how to support your mental health during this time.

The 2020 Presidential election is days away. It is safe to say this is quite a contentious election with emotions running high for all. Many people are counting the days in anticipation of all the campaigning and constant conversation to quiet down. While others are eager for results, as they feel their lives may be impacted by what policies the newly-elected may implement. Needless to say this election is causing stress. A recent American Psychological Association (APA) survey found that 56% of people identified the election as a major stressor in their lives. The CDC reports anxiety levels are increasing, especially among young adults, and Black and Latinos of all ages. Anxiety among all of us is 3 times as high as it was at this same time in 2019. We are struggling right now.

Election Stress Disorder was a term coined after the 2016 Presidential election. At that time, many professionals saw an increase of people with specific anxiety stemming from the election that was impacting their daily lives. Symptoms can be described as feeling tension, trouble sleeping, difficulty concentrating, irritability from watching the news or social media, and difficulty with social relationships. Because of the argumentative nature of the election, higher stakes, and increased challenges due to the Coronavirus pandemic, civil unrest, and natural disasters, more individuals are at risk for feeling these same symptoms than just 4 years ago.

The majority of what people stress over are things over which they have no control. The complexity of this year emphasizes this more. Stress affects our bodies in every aspect; physically, emotionally, mentally, and socially. In order to combat the stress you are feeling look at things you do have control over, even slightly, and focus on those.

Get back to basics. Get enough sleep, eat healthy, exercise daily, get outside, listen to music, interact with people, do things that are enjoyable to you, and limit the amount of news and social media you consume regarding the election. Take one day at a time. These tips may seem simple, yet they work. Control what you can in these stressful times. Click here to read our article on how to create a post-election self-care plan now.

The election’s fever pitch will lessen. Most often, the symptoms discussed here will lessen. If you find yourself still feeling stressed or struggling in everyday life, even after implementing these ideas, seek help. Our clinicians here at FamilyMeans can help you manage and reduce these feelings. Reach out today by calling 651-439-4840, or clicking the button below to make an appointment.

Written by Erin Rowlson, LMFT

FamilyMeans Clinical Director