Dealing with post-election stress

Image Credit: KWQC
Image Credit: KWQC

QUAD CITIES, Iowa/Ill. (KWQC) –  After a very intense election cycle, many people are dealing with a roller coaster of emotions — especially if their candidate lost.

Communicating those feelings is where things can get really tricky.

Families, workplaces, and communities remain deeply divided across the country. Anxiety over the races and their results can be considered post-Election Stress Disorder.

“Kind of running the gamut, from ecstatic to very upset, to just okay with it,” said Jennifer Streets, the Vera French Program Manager for School-Based Programs.

As a local school-based therapist, Streets says that if discussing this election among adults is tough, think about kids trying to understand it. She suggests going back to the basics with an explanation on how democracy works. You can also find positive distractions.

Another suggestion is to avoid being too occupied with what’s online. Plenty of voters we talked to say they’re feeling pressure to engage.

“I think it’s pretty healthy. You have to get your feelings out somehow,” said Jerica Jones.

“I don’t believe on like social media blocking somebody because of something like that. Unless they’re really saying stuff that they shouldn’t,” said Brandon Eis.

It’s a good idea to take a moment, breathe, and consider implications before lashing out. Bartender Broc Nelson thinks emotions are especially high because it’s been an election of extremes. He encourages more participation moving forward.

“Focus on your community, focus on building your local political scene as much as possible,” said Nelson.

Experts also say, if you have anxiety over the outcome over the election, to remember that very little will change overnight.