We’re all having a range of emotions around the upcoming U.S. presidential election. While election anxiety is high for many people, it is important for our working relationships that we maintain a respectful working environment for all. We’ve had many people reach out to us at The Ladipo Group asking how is it possible to do so now.
Election Anxiety: Maintaining working relationships
See the humanity in the other person. This is really hard when you don’t believe that others see the humanity in you. Though challenging, it is necessary to maintain a working relationship.
Focus on commonalities. We all want the same thing in life. Whether it’s a good education for our children, the ability to care for aging parents, or living in a safe environment, we all share basic common needs and desires.
Focus on the work. When it comes to politics, opinions generally are not changed and people don’t switch sides after a conversation about why your candidate is the right one. For the good of your working relationship, focus on the actual task at hand and what is needed to successfully accomplish it. Save political conversations for personal time.
Election Anxiety: Managing your emotions
Acknowledge your emotions and reactions. Ignoring or numbing emotions don’t make them disappear. It actually causes more stress for you, your body, and your relationships. Take the time to check in with yourself and your body to understand how you are feeling. Are you anxious, sad, fearful, excited, curious?
Express your emotions. Write in a journal, talk to a friend, or join a group where you can share your emotions and thoughts related to the upcoming election.
Set boundaries. Talk of the election is everywhere and can be overwhelming. Consider setting time limits on how much media and social media you consume daily. Give yourself permission not to engage in conversations with friends, family, and co-workers about the upcoming election.
—By Nicole Blackson & Tanya Ladipo
Grounded in our foundation of working with the Black and African-American communities, The Ladipo Group builds healthier workplaces, communities, and relationships through seminars, workshops, and coaching for organizations and individuals.