Three Steps to Extinguishing Post-Election Blues (and Trump’s “Win”)

Having listened for a week now, I am compelled to suggest we not allow Trump to keep "winning."  We can bemoan (and gnash and whimper and scream) over the current presidential choice, but does it serve us?  What we focus on expands, so it is only ourselves we hurt in the bemoaning (and gnashing and whimpering and screaming).  If we give up even one moment of joy and consciously created positive change, then Trump wins over and over and over.  We allow him to trap our precious focus that, rather than eternally enumerating his faults, could be used to propel us forward and upward.  Is that what we really want?  Again: does it serve us

I think part of our collective despondency results from an inherited (and unexamined) inaccurate belief.  Somehow we ascribe to a view that goes along these lines: the deeper we suffer, the deeper we care.  But is that true?  Have we just assumed those traits are bonded because for so long, they have been?  Are they really inextricably co-mingled? Mother Theresa is smiling (or at least looks peaceful) in any picture I’ve ever seen of her.  And as far as I know, Gandhi never flipped anyone off, or chanted nasty invectives as successful change tactics.  Kvetching is not what made them great changers.  How much we drag the pain along with us is just how much we drag the pain along with us, NOT how much we care, and CERTAINLY NOT how effective we are at change.

People claim a “right” to feeling bad over the presidential selection.  Of course!  We all have the “right” to feel however we feel.  You are totally, 100% in charge of your feelings, so feel whatever you want!  But know that you are choosing those feelings.  Trump may now be in charge of policies I do not align with, but he is NOT in charge of my joy.  I offer you the possibility that it’s not constructive or healthy to allow him to be in charge of yours, either.  As my friend Julie stated so accurately, “Nobody’s happy being unhappy.”

This is our chance, we left-leaners who profess a love for the environment; a view of the world that includes more bridges than walls; rights to equality that are blind to gender or color or anything else; and a belief that kindness is what makes us great.  Don’t let Trump "win!"  He will likely be in the White House for a few years, yes, but let’s use those four years to organize and bring forth our own positive changes.  It is our choice—individually and collectively—that will keep America great!

Here are three steps to extinguishing the Post-Election Blues:

1.     Every time you listen to/read a Trumpism that starts your blood boiling, stop and remember that you can do something positive to balance his actions (and your emotional power).  For example:

a.     Angry that he wants to cut social programs? Have you volunteered today?

b.     Concerned that he’s trying to change regulations that matter to you?  Have you called your representative in Congress, town council, or neighborhood board to share your opinions? 

c.     Don’t think you have time to actively help today?  Have you written a quick thank you note to someone you feel is intently change-making on behalf of your values? 

d.     Concerned about the environment?  Try gathering a group to clean up your local trails, or parks (even if the “group” is only you and your neighbor, at least you are moving forward!)

There are plenty more undertakings you can drive instead of merely reiterating your outrage.  Get creative and get going!

2.     Start changing The Conversation.  Instead of echoing how all your friends, or your entire city is devastated, begin talking about things you can do to change or even pre-empt the perceived ruination of our country/the environment/rights for various groups/etc.  Don’t intensify the problem by focusing only on the problem.

3.     Send Out Loving Vibrations (SOLV).  To me, this is the most important, and is what I do with many friends when we feel stressed.  We text/call each other, and “together” (maybe from different states or even countries), we Send Out Loving Vibrations.  You can call it prayer or meditation if you like, but those words seem to have some extra meanings attached, and SOLVing is not “religious,” nor does it ask for anything.  It’s just what it says: it’s an outward-facing thing.  I cannot possibly relate how valuable and uplifting this practice has been for me and many friends.  For 5 minutes or 30, alone or simultaneously with someone else who wants to send Love the same direction, just breathe in and out, and offer Love to the situation in whatever way feels most natural to you.  Since I believe Big Love (Grace, whatever you want to call it) is always around us, just waiting for us to notice it,[1] I simply try to get in the flow of noticing it.  It’s truly a miraculous practice.  

Once you decide that Trump is not the president of your happiness, the election—and all the potential good you can create with your new perspective—will take on a whole new meaning.  You won’t even remember to bemoan (or gnash or whimper or scream), so empowered will you be with all the concrete blessings you are now sharing with the planet.


[1] Grace is really hard to notice when we are so loudly complaining about what we don’t like!


Kelly Corbet is an author, mother, meditator, and mindfulness teacher whose greatest wish is to invite more Love into the world.  Her latest book, Already Here: the matter of Love, was published earlier this year.