Ahead of the most divisive election in decades, more than two-thirds of U.S. adults (68%) say that the 2020 U.S. presidential election is a significant source of stress in their life, a large increase from the 2016 presidential election when 52% said the same, according to a new survey conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of the American Psychological Association. The survey also found that regardless of political affiliation, majorities say that the election is a significant source of stress (76% of Democrats, 67% of Republicans and 64% of Independents).
To help students cope with stress, Counseling and Mental Health Services are offering “Election Stress Workshops” to help you manage during this uncertain time. Offered Mondays at noon and Thursdays at 5 p.m. from mid-October through mid-November. (Sign up through https://usc.edu/myshr.)
Individual “Let’s Talk” drop-ins are offered to all students (in CA, out of state, international students currently abroad); students in CA can schedule individual therapy sessions to get support and resources.
Embedded therapists are offering appointments through the cultural centers, if a student would like to connect to a therapist who is self-identified from a specific community. Advocate and ask for what you need when scheduling an appointment; the embedded therapists are one route to connecting.
Tips to Manage Stress During This Time:
1. Unplug frequently. Monitor the time you spend on social media, tv to help give yourself a break.
2. Focus on your goals, values, and what gives you meaning. It is important to focus on what you can control
3. Stay connected to loved ones that provide a nurturing, safe space.
4. Don’t forget the basics- Good sleep hygiene, eating habits and exercise.
5. Create structure and predictability daily and weekly. We need to feel empowered and in control, so creating a schedule daily, setting realistic goals, and having a vision on what you need to focus on daily is important.