Free Your Mind From Trump
According to Psychology Today, Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) has become a common ailment in the United States. Approximately 8 million Americans suffer from GAD. Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older, or 18.1% of the population every year. Anxiety disorders develop from a complex set of risk factors, including genetics, brain chemistry, personality, and life events. It's not uncommon for someone with an anxiety disorder to also suffer from depression or vice versa. Nearly one-half of those diagnosed with depression are also diagnosed with an anxiety disorder.
The overarching challenge we all face is that marketing professionals, campaign chairpersons and public relations firms are all acutely aware of the power of GAD. Hirsh and Mathews’ model of pathological hierarchy outlines the three elements of uncontrollable worry: emotional processing biases, impaired attention control and the tendency to represent possible negative outcomes in an over-general verbal form. Furthermore, as one verbalizes negative often irrational thoughts, they begin to form belief systems which thus begets our attitudes which eventually begets our behavior. Marketeers with competing interests depend on GAD to win in the marketplace. Politicians do the same to win political contests.
Our country environment is so toxic that it may take decades to restore us to the same discourse that allowed someone other than an Anglo male to get elected to the Presidency! The tactics used by the handlers of our Commander and Chief Bully are calculated and effective. A mental health phenomenon appropriately named, “Trump Anxiety Disorder” has been on the increase in the 33 months following the election, according to mental-health professionals from across the country who report unusually high levels of politics-related stress in their practices. This finding is not surprising given the relentlessly negative headlines and politically acrimonious climate. In 2017, clinical psychologist Jennifer Panning of Evanston, Ill., called the condition “Trump Anxiety Disorder,” distinguishing it from a generalized anxiety disorder because “symptoms were specific to the election of Trump and the resultant unpredictable sociopolitical climate.”
Though not an official diagnosis, the symptoms include feeling a loss of control and helplessness and fretting about what’s happening in the country.
As disheartening as Trump Anxiety Disorder may be, each of us have the power to take charge over our feelings and emotions. Visualization works well to improve attitude. Nelson Mandela has written extensively on how visualization helped him maintain a positive attitude while being imprisoned for 27 years. “I thought continually of the day when I would walk free. I fantasized about what I would like to do,” he wrote in his autobiography.
Each of us are constantly bombarded with social media messaging all of it centered on Donald Trump. We have the power to change the toxicity that is poisoning our thoughts and attitudes. Attitude talk is a way to override your past negative programming with positive internal messages.
Take a closer look at what you are saying to yourself.