5 Proven Remedies to Get You Through the Stress of Election Day

Make sure you have plenty of ice

Photo: Max van den Oetelaar via Unsplash

November 3 is going to be one of those stressful days where a big part of the stress is in knowing that it’s only going to get more stressful as the day progresses, which means that it may be time to think about deploying what I like to call “radical self care.” This means preparing yourself by sleeping right, getting your mind right, and making sure that everything you put in your body during the day itself is geared towards creating that salutary equilibrium that is precisely at the midpoint between seeing only one of everything and hugging the toilet.

Here are some time-tested and proven home remedies for getting you right where you need to be even when the whole world feels like it’s in the middle of a turbulent landing.

1. Start your day with a life-giving Espresso Martini

All photos and recipes: Laura Vincent

A healthy breakfast is the key to starting any day on the right foot, and if we have any hope of emerging on the other side of next Tuesday in anything other than a fetal position, this is going to be the time to pull out your breakfast big guns. Efficiency is as important as efficacy here, so we’re not going to be wasting any precious time making coffee by itself. The magic of this Very Special Breakfast for People Who Are Definitely Going to Survive Election Day™ is that the coffee goes right in it.

Here’s what you’ll need to make it work:

  • 1 ounce freshly brewed espresso or cold brew
  • 1⅔ ounces vodka of your choice
  • ⅔ ounces demerara sugar syrup
  1. Chill a cocktail glass. Place the ingredients in a cocktail shaker and fill with fresh ice.
  2. Shake vigorously and then strain into the chilled glass through a sieve. Enjoy.

2. Keep your morning going with a self-affirming White Russian

Two White Russians in short glasses on a table in a bar.
Two White Russians in short glasses on a table in a bar.

Vladimir Putin doesn’t have to be the only White Russian interfering with your election day (LOLOLOLOL!) if you play your cards right this Tuesday.

As the oddly exhilarating haze of that Espresso Martini begins to give way to a creeping sense of dread and panic, it’s time to center yourself with 10 deep, cleansing, and mindful breaths; as many slightly tipsy sun salutations as feel safe under the circumstances; and a satisfyingly heavy tumbler of mostly booze. Remember, while it may be only 11 a.m. in the U.S., it’s well into the evening in Russia.

Here’s the recipe:

  • 1½ ounces coffee liqueur
  • ½ ounces vodka
  • 2 ounces oat milk
  1. Pour the coffee liqueur and vodka into a short tumbler filled with fresh ice.
  2. Top with the oat milk, and stir to combine.

3. Ease into lunchtime with a calming Whisky Drink

A transparent yellow drink with ice cubes on a white surface. A strong light source causes the glass to cast a shadow.
A transparent yellow drink with ice cubes on a white surface. A strong light source causes the glass to cast a shadow.

As the sun reaches its apex in the sky on November 3, the blue-checked folks on election Twitter will be in a frenzy tweeting photos of lines at polling locations and drawing weirdly specific conclusions from them. Now is the time to be like Socrates and remember that the one thing you know is that you don’t know anything, which is not great, but it’s one more thing than the blue-checked folks on election Twitter know. It is also the time to reach for your Islay single malt whisky and fix yourself a hearty and health-giving Penicillin. This will inoculate you against punditry and it goes down a treat.

  • 1½ ounces fresh lemon juice
  • 1 inch fresh ginger root, roughly chopped
  • 1 ounce maple syrup, or to taste
  • 2 ounces blended scotch
  • ¼ ounces Islay single malt whisky
  • Slice of fresh ginger root and lemon zest, to serve
  1. Place the lemon juice, ginger root, and maple syrup into the base of a cocktail shaker glass. Stir to dissolve the maple syrup, and then muddle the ginger.
  2. Add the blended scotch and plenty of fresh ice, and shake.
  3. Strain the liquid through a small sieve into a tumbler filled with fresh ice. Carefully pour the Islay single malt over the top of the liquid as a float, and garnish with the ginger and lemon zest.

4. Veer dangerously into the evening with a kind and nourishing Pink Lady

A pink drink in a coupe glass, with a layer of foam on top.
A pink drink in a coupe glass, with a layer of foam on top.

Take a deep breath—you’re almost there. But if you look at it another way, it’s honestly only just started! Aren’t you glad you’ve been looking after yourself today?

Let’s keep it going with a mindfulness exercise. Take another slow, deep breath in and concentrate on the feeling of your breath as it enters your body and fills your lungs. If any stray thoughts enter your mind, gently push them away and focus back on your breath as you release it. Let the sounds of Karl Rove shouting incredulously at Wolf Blitzer about exit polls flatten into a buzz at the edges of your consciousness and remain focused on the gentle rise and fall of your chest as you breathe in and out.

Now, pour the following ingredients into a cocktail glass:

  • 1½ ounces gin
  • 1 ounce lemon juice
  • 1½ ounces pineapple juice
  • ½ ounce grenadine
  1. With all the ingredients in your cocktail glass, fill with fresh ice and shake.
  2. Strain through a sieve into a chilled coupe glass.

5. Slide limply into oblivion with a strong but soothing Rum Hanky Panky

A martini glass half-full of transparent brown liquid.
A martini glass half-full of transparent brown liquid.

How about that? You made it through the day. The blue-checks on Twitter are in quite a state: Currently they are tweeting photos of ballot boxes and then angrily debunking them. Wolf Blitzer, somehow, is still talking about exit polls, now to a 10-foot-tall hologram of Karl Rove that is flickering angrily in front of a 3D map of Miami-Dade County.

But you have mindfully tuned it all out, because you are intently focused on what matters: yourself and the ones you love. And the ones you love the very most right now are a handle of Smith and Cross Navy Strength Traditional Jamaica Rum, a sweet vermouth, and a dark, aromatic bottle of Fernet-Branca.

You know what to do:

  1. Place the rum, vermouth, and Fernet in a cocktail mixing glass. Add plenty of fresh ice to the glass and gently stir 10–15 times.
  2. Carefully strain the liquid into a chilled martini or coupe glass, twist the orange peel over the surface of the drink, and drop it into the glass.

And, for the love of God, whatever else you do, VOTE!

For more decadent and delicious vegan cocktails from Laura Vincent, check out her fantastic Bartenderly series.

Formerly editorial director @BuzzFeed. Currently editor @Tenderly and writer at large. Email: JackAShepherd at gmail

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