November 3rd, 2020; the day sought after since January 20th, 2016. Whether you're optimistic about the possibility of Biden/Harris entering the White House or don't for-see much change no matter the outcome, this particular election—for obvious reasons—has caused a ton of anxiety for us all. Other than doing your part by going out to vote, you should make it a priority to avoid the possible stressors this night is sure to bring. So to prepare we are laying out a few things you can do to keep sane as results roll in.
GO TO BED EARLY
Don't think of it as retreating. think of it as protecting your peace of mind. Every online platform will be full of outrage and clashing opinions no matter who wins. Putting down your phone and disconnecting might be the key to preserving your mental health.
There is no other way to say just get high! Grab an edible (or a whatever form of TCH or CBD you normally use) and mentally disconnect from the outside world. You'll mellow out and be less inclined to spend the night scrolling and reacting.
DO YOUR WEEKEND SELF CARE ON A TUESDAY
Whatever rituals you save for Friday night or Sunday afternoon do them now. Meditate, take a long bath, order your favorite takeout. Do what you can to put yourself in a state of zen.
UTILIZE THE MUTE BUTTON
If don't want to disconnect completely, consider using the privacy tools social media provides to filter out what you don't want to see. Both twitter and Instagram have settings that allow you to mute words and hashtags. Also don't be afraid to mute (or block) people you know will cause stress. Utilize these tools to stop the madness before it starts.
START THE HOLIDAYS EARLY
Nothing puts me in a better mood than the holidays! So drumming up a bit of placebo holiday spirit might not be a bad idea. Throw on a classic holiday film and bake a pie or build a gingerbread house. No shame in pulling out the stockings out early and filling your home with joy.
SURROUND YOURSELF WITH UPLIFTING FRIENDS/FAMILY
You don't have to spend the night alone. Invite over friends with positive attitudes and make a night of it. If you're tired of politics let everyone know that your home will be an "Election-Free" zone. This guarantees will revolve around anything other the fate of the country. But if it doesn't matter what you talk about either way you can have some fun and make a drinking game out of this hectic night. Whatever you do, you can't go wrong when you're with good people.
Remember that the one thing you can control is how you maintain your mental health during all of this. The days following the election will be filled with tension making it especially difficult for the black and brown community. Consider taking time off if you need it (if your job allows) to process. Refill any meds you may be running low on and do what you can to make your home a safe haven for the time being. I myself, have stocked up on groceries so that if my partner and I don't feel up to leaving the house for a few days post election we won't have to.
No matter what happens think of the resilience that POC and the younger generation have shown this year. If this is any indication of our future, then we've still got fight left in us to make real change no matter who takes that seat for the next four years. Please stay safe and check on your loved ones.