11 Self-care Tips in the Age of Trump
It’s only been four weeks, and already Americans are stressed out by the new administration. Stress, as we know, has a negative impact on health and can even shorten your life if left to continue. So now, more than ever, self-care is vitally important. Here are some tips.
1 Take a relaxing bubble or salt bath
Water is a healing element, particularly when combined with essential oils, cheerful bubbles, or fragrant bath salts. Get that water as hot as you can stand it, douse it with your favorite mix of feel-good, smell-good add-ins, grab a glass of wine, and then enjoy. Add some soft music. Maybe Enya. For an added stress-reliever, you can pick up one of these:
Work out your stress by drowning it, grabbing it by the tailfeathers, and just generally abusing it. Doesn’t that feel better?
2 Have a glass of wine
Remember, it’s always wine o’clock somewhere in the world.
3 Eat healthy, nutritious foods
Self-care means providing your body with good fuel. Just ask yourself, “What would Donald Trump eat?” And then avoid all of those things.
In general, it’s best to avoid emotional eating, which often happens when we get stressed. But if you feel really stressed, you can choose from a variety of healthy recipes that all come from immigrants, such as burritos, curries, or salad rolls. That being said, borscht and taco bowls may not be as emotionally fulfilling.
Exercise is vitally important to your self-care, whether you go to a gym, take long walks, or ride a bike. It doesn’t matter what you do, but get that body moving!
If you’re feeling even more stressed than usual, exercise can help you get out your frustrations in ways that other things can’t. For example, if you’re feeling angry, you can try punching a pillow. Or better yet, try punching or whacking one of these:
5 Have another glass of wine
But not this wine:
Meditation is proven to help you relax and keep you centered and at peace. There are many kinds of meditation in the world to choose from. You can try to quiet your mind and keep thoughts from entering your head. Ah, but who are we kidding? In the age of Trump, this is impossible for everyone except Trump himself. In times like these, you may decide that repeating a mantra as you meditate is far more helpful. Here are some ideas:
Om mani padme hum…
I am peace…
I am love…
She was warned. She was given an explanation. Nevertheless, she persisted…
CNN is not fake news…
7 Treat yourself
One of the best forms of self-care is treat yourself every single day. It could be small, like a cup of hot Starbucks coffee, served up by a refugee, or larger, like a massage, manicure, or trip to your psychotherapist, who has reams of folders filled with Trump worries from stressed-out Americans like yourself. (If necessary, you and your psychotherapist can have joint therapy with another psychotherapist.)
Outings can be a treat, as well. Get out into nature, visit a national park before it’s sold off to white ranchers, or visit an art museum. The arts are excellent therapy, whether you like to beat on bongos naked in the middle of the night, or paint and draw. Coloring is also fashionable, and millions find it very relaxing. For example, you can color books full of mandalas, cute cats, or even this:
8 Just go for the vodka
But not this vodka:
9 Try bibliotherapy (reading a good book)
Bibliotherapy is a real thing, and a good book really can help you relax and feel better, particularly when you’re going through a rough time. If you have the bandwidth, you can sit down with a conventional book by the fire and enjoy. (This activity also goes well with tips number 2, 5, and 8.) Alternatively, if you’re busier, you can listen to audio books read by outstanding voice actors. You can download a book to your mobile phone and listen to it anywhere, even while exercising, cleaning house, fetching coffee for your mansplaining boss, or punching a piñata.
Classic books are always a good choice, and here are a few ideas:
Although, if these titles are still a bit stressful, you can usually find a book about a dog or other animal. Unless they die in the book. Maybe a cookbook?
10 Surround yourself with supportive friends and family
The best self-help is to surround yourself with people who truly love and support you. Unless they’re avid Trump supporters. If your uncle wears a “Make America Great Again” cap, it might be better for your stress levels if he doesn’t come for the holidays. Or any time, really.
Likewise, your social media feed can influence your state of mind. The friend who posts cat videos is a keeper, for sure, and the sister with the “Still With Her” profile picture is fine. But rest assured that it’s okay if you “unfollow” Dad, who keeps posting Breitbart articles and anti-immigrant memes. Likewise, if your cousin can’t get over Bernie losing the nomination to Hillary, it’s worth considering unfriending them. Who needs to relive 2016 when 2017 is already a pile of shit?
Hang onto the friends who are politely respectful, of course, and then consider creating a group for the Resisters, for occasional “honest talk” and venting. Guard entry to that group like Cerberus itself, blocking any would-be Trump trolls. You have to put up with your Trump-voting co-workers, neighbors, and family members, but it’s important to have a place where primal screaming is allowed. (See tip number 7.)
11 Buy a liquor store
In the long run, this will save you money on wine and vodka, and once the GOP eliminates Social Security and all hope of decent medical insurance, a liquor store in the era of Trump will always make loads of money, and you’ll need it if you ever want to retire. It also makes a handy inheritance for your children, because the GOP will eliminate the estate tax, too, and since your kids won’t have a decent education, they can at least learn to run a cash register.
Originally published at brighthill.net on February 19, 2017.