5 ways to recover from election fatigue — the Alaska way
Another Election Day has come and gone in the United States. But the entire election cycle, Tuesday included, put voters across the country on a emotional roller coaster, which was quite possibly the political ride of a lifetime for many.
But despite which side of this country’s divided political spectrum voters sit on, most can agree this election has been exhausting.
Yes, political fatigue and whiplash are real.
It’s time to take care of ourselves and recover, but that’s easier said than done in the world constantly plugged-in.
Lucky for folks for the 49th state, we have Alaska therapy — and it’s mostly free.
1) Briefly run away to a cabin.
Maybe you need to be alone to gather your thoughts. Or maybe you’re just really tired of thinking and talking about the election. Either way, Alaska has public use cabins available across the state. I’d suggest finding one without cellphone service, as it’s all too easy to just check Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or texts, and suddenly spin into a election-related fury. If you’re going with others, perhaps let your companions know the cabin and wilderness are no place to talk politics.
2) Put your energy into an ax and chop wood.
Feeling frustrated? Who needs a punching bag when you have wood to chop? There is nothing more satisfying than the perfect hit; an ax striking and slicing a piece of wood in half. You put all of your strength into the swing. Then, when one log is done, you move on to the next. Please, though, be careful. Watch your footing, hold on tight, don’t throw your back out and only swing at the log. Be cautious of others, too — make sure they’re out of harm’s way.
3) Take a soul-searching walk in the woods.
Sometimes, you need to take a break. Stop thinking about the last year and think about the path ahead of you. Put on your ice cleats, tell a friend where you’re going, find a trail and start walking. The sound of the ground crunching beneath your feet, the smell of crisp winter air and frost-tipped mountains ahead of you will bring you peace and rejuvenation. Don’t get carried away and “Into the Wild” it, though.
4) Dance it out — and ask for snow while you’re at it.
Who cares if you have two left feet, shut up and dance. Dance is the ultimate human expression, so maybe your jig is something joyous — like the Carlton to a happy little ditty — or maybe it’s more of a somber Black Swan-like ballet you perform in the privacy of your bedroom. Regardless, dancing is usually the best choice. And since Alaska is seriously lacking in the snow department, maybe it’s time to choreograph a snow dance. It couldn’t hurt, could it?
5) Celebrate how great our fellow Alaskans are.
Alaskans are great, aren’t they? Sure, we don’t always agree with each other, but we’re a hearty and feisty bunch who have the ability to survive anything — or at least die trying. Alaskans have been doing it forever. If you don’t believe me, listen to the stories of our elders. Ask them about the Alaska Territorial Guard; I’m sure they’ll tell you all about the Alaska Native peoples who organized voluntarily in the early-1940s to defend the nation from the enemies of World War II. They did so without respect from the nation they were defending — but they did it to protect the land they love, the land that is a part of them.
Now, it’s up to us to continue their legacy of strength and unity. To do this, we’ll need to respect each other and stand together.
So buy a cup of coffee for the person in line next to you, smile at a stranger or share your winter fish supply. The people of Alaska need you.
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