Feeling stressed over the election? Here’s how doctors say you can relax


NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Has the uncertainty of the presidential election left you feeling anxious and stressed? If so, you’re certainly not alone.

A recent poll from the American Psychological Association found more than two-thirds of adults in the United States said the 2020 presidential election is a significant source of stress in their life.

“Stress is definitely the right word,” said Marley Hughes, a student at Yale University. “I’m really anxious.”

Voters, News 8 spoke with in New Haven, said they’ve been glued to their televisions, checking their phones and staying on top of the latest news.

“On election night, we have had the TV on the entire night,” said Laiqa Walli, a student at Yale University. “We stayed up, barely got any sleep. I knew the numbers wouldn’t come out, but it was nerve-wracking to watch.”

While they understand the process will take time, they’re hoping to find out who won soon2.

Full election results

“I just don’t know what the future really brings,” said Vinny Capasso, of Wallingford.

Dr. Laura Saunders, a psychologist with the Institute of Living, said there are steps people can take to help feel better. She said, as we deal with the mounting stress from the pandemic and election, it’s important to find time to unplug and to do the things that make us happy.

“We need to disconnect [and] focus on things we do have control over. What we eat for dinner, going for a walk, talking to a friend, meditating, listening to a song. We can’t continue like this. It’s just too much for all of us.”

She added movement is a mood booster. Dr. Saunders recommends finding ways to get active, even if it’s cleaning the house. She also said, during the election and beyond, we all need to be kind to ourselves and to one another.

“We need to self-reflect on our divisive language, take a step back, try to find something in common, try and find something in common, build a bridge,” said Dr. Saunders. “The more we can do positive things, the more we can come back to our center.”

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