Only nine more days.
Take a walk. Pet the dog. Feed the fish. Do whatever it takes to avoid screaming like a banshee at your uncle or niece or next-door neighbor, and remember to remain seated in an upright position until the presidential election comes to a complete stop.
There are other channels on satellite TV besides the cable news networks. Find them. Enjoy the Cowboys game.
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We were hoping the Rangers and Horned Frogs would help us get through this time of national anguish, but they dropped from contention. That left nobody to distract us but Dak Prescott, or the Cubs.
If you cut off a friendly conversation to watch “breaking news,” or if your frozen custard melted while you argued on Facebook, you’re not alone.
More than half of Americans, including almost two-thirds of Republican men over 60, report “significant stress” over the election, according to a survey for the Washington-based American Psychological Association.
It’s not even about winning or losing.
We ruminate and get so overworked it interferes with the joy of life.
Ross Teemant, Texas Health Resources senior director of behavioral health
“I don’t know if it’s as much about ‘my side’ as about what will happen depending who wins,” said Ross Teemant, senior director of what is now called “behavioral health” for Arlington-based Texas Health Resources.
“I’ve heard everything from ‘I’m going to move’ to ‘This country’s going to be in a civil war’ — and not just from patients,” he said.
Clients using social media are about 20 percent more stressed over the election than those who don’t, the APA found in an August “Stress in America” survey of 3,511 American adults by the New York-based Harris Poll.
Even some avid Facebook users have “taken a break” until mid-November.
The survey did not measure stress among children.
But Linda Metcalf, director of graduate counseling programs at Texas Wesleyan University, said children are hearing parents’ worries about candidates and asking, “What’s that word?” or “Why did they say such a mean thing?”
52percent of American adults are stressed out about this whole Nov. 8 election thing
The candidates have not put anyone at ease, Metcalf said.
“We know so little — neither one has been able to give us a clear picture of where they really stand, and that makes us anxious,” Metcalf said.
We do more than fret, Teemant said: “Muscles tighten, sleep decreases, the heart rate increases … We ruminate and get so overworked it interferes with the joy of life.”
So take deep breaths. Read. Put down the TV remote and back slowly away.
Don’t let the breaking news break you.