I’m experiencing election anxiety, especially when it comes to Trump. His harsh rhetoric and unpredictability scare me. I’m registered as a Democrat but if other Republicans were still running, such as Marc Rubio, John Kasich or Jeb Bush, I would have considered them. The U.S. had eight years of a Democratic presidency, I wouldn’t mind a change of direction, but I can’t imagine a Trump presidency. Do I think he believes what he says? I partly feel it’s his showmanship. He knows how to market his brand, manipulate the media, and play on people’s fears. He’s a charismatic businessman and there are qualities that he has that people can learn. I don’t think he’s presidential material, though.
To me, a president is the ultimate civil servant. You’re diplomatic, thick-skinned, and you give yourself to your country. Watching Trump in debates and interviews, he doesn’t portray himself in that manner. When people disagree with him he insults them when people ask him to debate, he refuses. As a potential president, you’re going to have to do shit that you’re not going to like but for the sake of your citizens, you do it. If people criticize, shrug it off. All presidents are hated during their time in office and then are beloved after. People wear rose- colored glasses once a president ends their term. If Trump wins the candidacy, is he going to be the same person as when he campaigned? I’m not so sure. Part of me feels that if this is all a show, he may be more moderate than what he releases to the public. If he’s the same person as when he campaigned, I have to brace myself for potential changes I’m not going to like such as the dismantling of the Affordable Care Act, funding cuts toward education and the increase of oppression towards the marginalized. His fickleness makes me woozy and unsteady.
I know I’m not the only one who experiences this anxiety, there are others as well. Here are some self-soothing methods that I researched and do to reduce this headache.
- Accept and prepare for the worst-Us humans can’t control external events that happen, we can only control what’s going on with us. The Trump Anxiety mainly comes from things we are unable to control and that’s normal. What I do is imagine what I’d want my reactions to being if Trump is to be elected and the more I imagine, the more I accept it.
- Checks and Balances-I remind me that the president is checked by Congress and the Supreme Court and vice versa. The president can’t just put a law into action unless it’s voted by the majority of Congress. Hence the importance of paying attention to Congress elections and voting for them as well. Also, pay attention to local elections, their laws are the ones that affect citizens faster than federal ones.
- Focus on what you’re able to control-Focusing on the present and what you’re able to control shifts attention away from the anxiety and into more productive actions.
- Meditate– I’ve said in my previous posts that I’m a huge proponent of meditation. Meditation can help ground someone and separate the person from the chaos.
- Accept your Emotions– Have self- compassion for your emotions. Don’t belittle yourself for having them, it’s normal. Feeling them instead of resisting them helps reduce the anxiety.
There are benefits to this presidential election. People from both the Democratic and the Republican parties are bonding over their common distaste towards Trump, and hot topics, such as immigration reform, are picking up steam. So it’s not all bad. The best we can do is research who we’re voting for, vote and sit back and watch the parade of what is the election process.
By Michael Vadon (Donald Trump) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons