6 ways to tune out the election and pretend everything’s fine until this is all over
Ah, you guys, the election is this close to being over, which means the amount of bullshit you’re going to hear about the polls, electoral college votes, and who’s winning and losing is going to be at an all time high for the next 48 hours. Just in case you need it, there are ways to tune out election news until it’s over. Seriously, at this point, you’ve clicked on all the headlines, retweeted the debate memes, and even told someone they were “WRONG” in all-caps on Facebook. This shit has been exhausting. That being said, if you’re going to vote (and you really should vote for someone) you probably already know who that’s going to be, so you can make your way to your polling place, place your vote, and then just go back to tuning everything out.
But other than taking care of your own vote if you so desire, just don’t listen to anything anyone says until the polls close Tuesday night. It’s likely that unless Donald Trump wins in a landslide, he’ll contest the results. Remember when he told us he’d keep us all in suspense? Or who knows, maybe FBI director James Comey will come out with yet another letter about Hillary Clinton and her goddamn emails.
Seriously though, if you’re anything like me and have some major anxiety about WTF the world is going to look like Wednesday morning (I imagine something like the first Walking Dead season), there are ways to ease your election anxiety.
Step 1: Stock up on booze
Or weed or whatever works for you. You’re going to need something to do on election night when the polls are closing and the only good option is go full-on bender. At home. Call a friend and make it a party. Or just buy lots of chips and dip and start watching Gilmore Girls from the beginning on Netflix. Sure, you might hate yourself a little the next day, but at least you won’t be at a bar or a watch-party while someone who never reads the news and isn’t voting tries to guess the outcome all night.
Step 2: Stop watching cable news
If you’re the kind of person who leaves the news on, don’t do it. Remember that these people are just trying to work and their networks are on for 24 hours a day. They have to fill up time, so there’s an angle for everything, and if you already have Election Stress Disorder, it just makes it worse. It’s like scratching a bug bite. They’ll have pundits talking about why the Latinx vote matters and then why it doesn’t. They’ll run electoral college scenarios and pretend they can predict the future. They’ll show Trump and Clinton speaking at their last rallies. It will be intense. You have to not watch it.
Step 3: Forget your phone
This is hard, especially when you need it for work, but try to not go on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter until it’s over. All you’re going to see is people sharing more memes and selfies with their “I voted” stickers… just no. Hasn’t it been enough? Delete the apps for a day so you’re not tempted or just leave your phone at home altogether. Just tell your friends you’re planning on an Election Day bender and turning off your phone so they don’t think you’ve been kidnapped.
Step 4: Remember no one can predict the future
Pretty much no one has any idea how this thing is going to turn out. Yeah, there are the number guys, like Nate Silver, who use models and trends and shit to make an estimated guess about what needs to happen for someone to win, but there are no guarantees. What we do know is that this is a tight race. So stop watching the polls, stop trying to figure out if North Carolina is going to go for your candidate or not, just stop counting altogether.
Step 5: Plan a vacation
No, really, you deserve this. If you have the means, instead of refreshing your Twitter TL, you should browse for plane tickets. Go visit your BFF in California finally, or plan an all-inclusive November weekend somewhere tropical. Life is short and this is no time to be stingy with your savings. Treat yo’ self (or at least hardcore daydream about coconut-themed cocktails on a beach for Thanksgiving).
Step 6: Focus on yourself
Instead of watching the news (or drinking two bottles of wine), turn off all your devices and be nice to yourself. Take a shower. Paint your nails. Make your own face mask, Paltrow-style. Maybe DIY a new hair color. Or try to organize your closet. Color coordinate your bookshelf. Get zen.
Most importantly, whatever you do, don’t believe the hype. It’s an election, not the end of the world. We’ve had bad presidents and good presidents in the past, so what’s the worst thing that can happen? Don’t answer that.