7 Ways to Combat Election Anxiety and Protect Your Heart and Lungs

The US presidential election is provoking a lot of anxiety. No matter which candidate you voted for, the contradicting news and uncertainties can cause anxiety, insomnia, fear, and worries. These symptoms have a direct impact on your immune system and overall health.

Why does election anxiety affect our heart and lungs?

Chinese would describe the situation as ”shocking the heart and shaking the soul.” Why?

According to Ancient Chinese medicine, the heart is an organ that houses one’s chief spirit and governs blood circulation. Therefore, the heart’s function is susceptible to emotional distresses and consequently suffers from blood circulation disorders. People may experience anxiety, insomnia, confusion, feeling vulnerable and lost, heart palpitations, sweating, cold extremities, chest tightness, or pain.

On the other hand, ancient Chinese medicine holds that the lungs are the residence of the human corporal souls, sensitive to emotions of sadness and grief. They are in charge of breathing and the distribution of human energy.  When the lungs are disturbed emotionally, one can suffer from depression, fatigue, social withdrawal, shortness of breath, coughing or wheezing, vulnerability to upper respiratory infections.

We are in the middle of political chaos as well as COVID-19 pandemics. This emotional distress like anxiety, worries, sadness, and fear are particularly harmful to our health, the heart, and lungs.

The coronavirus can directly damage the human lungs and heart. It can cause risks for those with pre-existing chronic health problems.

What are the symptoms of election anxiety?

Suppose you find yourself starting to experience restlessness, fear, worry, or insomnia. Your inability to focus at work or study, inability to manage everyday life, and trouble with relationships, may have reached the level that requires a lifestyle change and removal of stress sources, such as social media.

Physical symptoms may include loss of appetite, chest tightness, palpitation, headache, insomnia, etc.

If this disorder becomes more severe and does not dissipate for weeks or months, you may suffer an anxiety disorder. At this point, you need to seek help from professionals.

In ancient Chinese medicine, the heart and lungs’ functional partners are the small intestines and the large intestines, respectively. Modern medicine recognizes the digestive system as the second brain, for it has over 100 million neurons.

Therefore, any emotional distress affecting the heart and lungs will cause gastrointestinal problems, such as acid reflux, diarrhea, constipation, bloating, stomach ache, or exacerbation of pre-existing irritable bowel syndrome .

Shouldn’t we manage our election anxiety? But how?

Seven ways that help combat Election Anxiety

    1.    Focus on things you can do

You have no control over what will happen in the future. The more you dwell, the greater your anxiety and fear.

The first thing you want to do is pull your mind from worrying about the uncertain future back to something that you can control and do now.

    2.    Live in the present

There is a saying that we need to live in the moment. It does not mean that

you just seek pleasure all the time.  It advises that being present is your chance to experience life and make a difference.

The past has passed, and no one can change that. If you regret it too much, you will be depressed. On the other hand, you will be very anxious if you worry too much about the future that no one can predict. It’s that simple.

3.    Do more exercise

Exercise not only improves your blood circulation and distracts you from stress,  but it also stimulates our brain to produce neurotransmitters that make us calm and more peaceful.

 4.    Spend time to pray

Although not every one of us has religious beliefs, we all feel the universe’s spiritual power.  Praying helps us calm down, focus better, express our wishes, send messages to the universe, and have a sense of control. You may pray for your favorite candidate or the integrity, safety, and prosperity of our country. The power of prayer is beyond our human imagination.

 5.    Practice meditation

Close your eyes, count your breath, pay attention to the sound and breeze, scan your body sensation, focus on whatever you are doing and feel. You are meditating! It is easy! Focusing on the present moment is meditation!

6.    Drink more tea

Although tea contains caffeine, it is also rich in soothing L-theanine, which can relax your body and mind without making you tired. Drinking a cup of tea in the morning or at lunchtime provides you with healthy antioxidants and peace of mind!

7.    Sleep enough and at the right time

It is much easier to fall asleep around 10 PM. Passing that hour, the body will get confused and produce cortisol instead of melatonin.

Ancient Chinese medicine states that 11 PM to 3 AM is the most important four hours of sleep.  Our liver and gallbladder need to be nourished, detoxed, and restored during that period.

If you have trouble sleeping naturally, you can take supplements like melatonin, L-theanine, and GABA. A doctor, who is well-versed in nutrients, can make a recommendation.

Get help from the Yang Institute

If you have developed severe and lasting anxiety and are wondering if you may suffer from an epigenetic condition, you should get professional help.

Yang Institute’s holistic and integrative medicine approach combines psychotherapy with QEEG guided Neurofeedback Therapy, Neuromodulation Therapy, Advanced Nutrient Therapy, Acupuncture, and Herbal Remedies, and lifestyle modification. Treatment is based on each individual’s particular condition and diagnoses.