Peer Educator Program

Need Help?

Crisis Care

For Life Threatening Emergencies:

Call 911

Or go to your nearest Emergency Room

_________________________________

For other crisis needs 24/7:

♦   Or 1-866-817-9842

    ♦   Text “Home” to 741741

7 Tips for Coping With Election Stress

Home 9 Resources 9 Virtual Resources 9 7 Tips for Coping With Election Stress

7 Tips for Coping with Election Stress

Judy Hao, PhD

Senior Staff Psychologist

 

If you care about politics, looking toward the 2024 presidential year elections for candidates and ballot initiatives may feel at minimum personal and in the extreme highly stressful.  Polarization, vitriol and an “us vs. them” mentality have soared in the public sphere. What can you do to stay engaged and motivated to support making the world a better place (of course, each person may define this differently), while protecting yourself from burnout, cynicism, bitterness and hostility?

  1. Focus on what you can control and what positive actions you can take.
  • Vote if you are eligible to do so and join voter registration drives to encourage others to put their voice where the ballot box is.
  • Volunteer to campaign for your candidates and ballot initiatives, both local/regional and national.
  • Become an activist by attending meetings, peaceful protests, marches and rallies to support the causes and issues you are passionate about.

 

  1. Separate people (and their inherent value) from their viewpoints.
    • Especially when it comes to family and friends, remind yourself, “I can love someone without agreeing with them or even understanding why they think the way they do. Our relationship is built on so much more than our political views.”
    • Exercise your empathy muscle by remembering a time in your life in which you believed something or held a certain viewpoint and then later changed your mind. Your views are a part of who you are, but they don’t define you.

 

  1. Stay mindful.
  • Before you engage in a discussion/debate with someone who has an opinion contrary to yours, consider what your goal is. Are you really going to change their mind or get them to admit that you are right?  Is it important in this time and space, nevertheless, for you to speak up even if to maintain your own self respect?
  • Acknowledge and validate the fears, anxieties and anger that you and the other person have. It can feel scary if you believe your rights may be taken away, that your values are being trampled on, or that your chances for a successful future are being diminished. It makes sense to feel angry in the face of what you perceive to be injustice and unfairness.

 

  1. Set boundaries.
  • Limit your exposure to political news and social media (e.g., 30 minutes a day).
  • Take mental and conversation breaks from politics (e.g., contemplate all the things you’re grateful for that day, talk about your non-political interests).
  • It’s ok to walk away from an overly heated conversation that doesn’t feel productive or meaningful.

 

  1. Beware of disinformation.
  • Educate yourself about the facts and their sources.
  • Seek out tools to discern false information (e.g., newslit.org).

 

  1. Remember the Golden Rule.
  • Don’t villainize if you don’t want to be villainized.
  • Remain civil and refrain from name calling.
  • Befriend someone “on the opposite side of the aisle” to practice true dialoguing (vs. serial monologuing).

 

  1. Stay CURIOUS.
  • “Hmmm…I wonder what about this person’s background, culture, and life experiences factor into their thinking so differently from me?”
  • “What can I learn from this person even if I don’t agree with them?”

 

Caring about our society enough to stay politically engaged is not always easy.  However, your voice is worth expressing and being heard, so stay in the game.  Experimenting with these tips might help you do just that!

Mind Your Zot!

Body Neutrality

It is getting closer to the holiday break and the end is in sight! Soon we will be with family and friends and getting some much-needed relaxation after the start to the quarter! Phew!

While this time can be something to look forward to, it is important to still be aware of caring for your mental health. Here are some things to consider as we reach the end of the year!

The Importance of Intentionality

It is getting closer to the holiday break and the end is in sight! Soon we will be with family and friends and getting some much-needed relaxation after the start to the quarter! Phew!

While this time can be something to look forward to, it is important to still be aware of caring for your mental health. Here are some things to consider as we reach the end of the year!

Holiday Healing

It is getting closer to the holiday break and the end is in sight! Soon we will be with family and friends and getting some much-needed relaxation after the start to the quarter! Phew!

While this time can be something to look forward to, it is important to still be aware of caring for your mental health. Here are some things to consider as we reach the end of the year!