November 25, 2016

Concrete Steps for Navigating Election Grief

Dashielle Vawter

Here are a couple steps for navigating profound disappointment, grief and fear:

1. Make space for the experience, all of it. Try not to edit or downplay, just feel what you’re feeling. If you have trouble with that journaling can help, or calling a friend and asking them to listen but not problem-solve. Also taking time out in nature, feet on the ground. Nature is a great space holder and perspective-giver. Watch the animals and tune to where they’re at- they can help regulate our nervous systems too. Don’t try and escape the feelings, see if you can simply breath and feel without escaping or fixing.

2. At some point the feelings will subside, you may still worry in your mind, but on some level your system has equalized and you’re ready to move forward. It may take hours, days, or weeks at most for the initial emotional shock to subside (this doesn’t mean you’re not worried anymore, it just means you’ve integrated the new reality you find yourself in and your brain is back on line and ready to help). How do you want to be with this? What support do you need? What support do you want to offer? Creating a tangible channel for the energy to go into- like a service project or getting into local politics- is a way to choose a path of empowerment and engagement with a future you believe in. Move the energy through thought, word and action into the world.

Things do happen that are out of our control in our lives/this world- but that doesn’t mean we lose our power to continue to engage for what we believe in. It’s key to feel what it feels like, but to not get stuck in stories of victimhood or hopelessness. We need not become disempowered because it’s harder now; we need to recommit because we are needed more profoundly.

Like everyone is saying, stick together; we still need to show up to “work” every day to take care of each other, ourselves, and our planet.

About Dashielle Vawter

I’m a coach, lover, writer, singer, experimenter, dancer and adventurer. Here's to our beautiful lives together <3

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