Coping with the Aftermath of the Election

By Sarah Spitz LMSW

Regardless of your political affiliation, this election has been an emotional roller coaster.  As discussed in many of our previous posts, throughout the entire campaign we have been bombarded with the 24 hour news cycle, which included a toxic stream of negativity in the coverage of the candidates. In addition to the news, we were faced with difficult communication with family members, friends and coworkers, both in person and over social media. This all came to an end this Tuesday, and now we must find a way to move forward, both individually and as a country. 

So in these few days post-election, what can we do?

  • Be Mindful of Your Emotions:  Feel what you need to feel, whether that is grief, anger, frustration, elation, confusion or numbness. Take time to reflect inward and take stock of what you are feeling in your mind and in your body. 
     
  • Take Care of Yourself: After taking stock of your emotions, what is it that you need to do to care for yourself? Maybe you need some time alone to process, or maybe you want to be surrounded by loved ones. Self-care is important, and it is definitely not selfish.  When we care for ourselves we are better able to care for others. And if you feel that you need more support in navigating this post-election climate, therapy can also be helpful.
     
  • Connect to Others: Many of us feel helpless and unsure of where to go from here. When the time feels right to you, connect to others in the community and listen to what they are feeling and what they have to say.  From there, you can take action with awareness.  
     
  • Take Action: There is no one right way to do this, and it may take some time to find exactly how you want to be involved. Action can happen on a small or large scale, and the important part is that it feels authentic and meaningful to you.  Maybe you will join a community group, get involved in supporting causes you believe in, or donate or raise money for an organization— don’t be afraid to explore your options. 

Sarah Spitz is a therapist at Cobb Psychotherapy.  If you would like support with coping with the post-election climate, visit cobbpsychotherapy.com and learn how therapy can help.