Gutted. Devastated. Anxious. Panicked. Sick. Fearful. Drained, both physically and emotionally. That's what many of us are feeling on Wednesday as we struggle to come to grips with the spirit-crushing results of Tuesday's election. And that's okay. Before we can get to the crucial work of being the change we want to see in the world — and demonstrating that females are, in fact, strong as hell — it's important for all of us to take a step back and practice some self-care.
Now, self-care in and of itself is a privilege to which not all women have access. I realize that. I also realize that as a white, upper-middle-class woman who lives in New York City and works alongside supportive, strong women, I'm uniquely privileged to even be able to write this and indulge in thinking about self-care. But we can't neglect our own physical, mental and emotional health; we're going to need all of those things as we prepare for what comes next. So if you're fortunate enough to also have the privilege of being able to indulge in a bit of self-care right now, please do so.
With that in mind, we at Fashionista compiled a list of 13 things you can do in the immediate to take care of yourself and your fellow females. First comes self-care. Then comes progress.
1. Do some yoga.
Bustle rounded up seven guided videos devoted specifically to stress-reducing poses you can do at home. Check for free or pay-what-you-wish classes in your area; Lululemon offers free sessions in stores or other public spaces. You can find a session in your area here.
2. Make sure you're up-to-date on your doctor visits.
Get a Pap smear. Get a mammogram. Check in with your therapist. Have your dermatologist do a thorough skin-check. Ask any and all questions you may have regarding your own health, without feeling rushed or apologetic for doing so. If your doctor makes you feel like you should somehow be apologetic, find a new one. Zocdoc is an excellent resource for scoping out doctors and tracking your personal health.
3. On a similar note, consider getting an IUD if you don't already have one. And do it soon.
With the immediate future of access to women's health resources in jeopardy, IUDs offer reliable, steady birth control that can last for years. Since access to other birth control may be in question in the immediate days of Trump's presidency, prioritize a visit to your doctor before the end of the year. The Cut put together an overview of different IUD options.
4. Donate to Planned Parenthood.
The organization's website allows you to write in someone whom you'd like to honor with your donation. Some ideas: "Hillary Rodham Clinton," "Future Generations" or, possibly, "All of Humanity."
5. Give yourself a breast exam.
It's easy; it's free; it takes only a few minutes. Goodful created a helpful video to walk you through it:
Download an app that offers guided meditation, like Stop Breathe & Think, Calm or Headspace, or look for guided meditation in your area. New York City's MNDFL is open (despite intermittent issues it's having with its website), so if you'd like to claim a spot in one of their sessions but aren't able to get through online, you can call at 212-477-0487.
7. Download an anti-anxiety app.
Try Pacifica, which helps you better manage anxiety and stress.
8. Try acupuncture.
A holistic approach to anti-anxiety, acupuncture has been shown to have a number of different benefits. And some acupuncture practitioners are even offering free treatments at this time; Olo Acupuncture in New York City has been providing anxiety-calming "auricular acupuncture" (ear acupunture) at no cost today.
9. Find a way to laugh.
Put on a comedy you find uplifting, pick up your copy of "Bossypants" or get yourself to a comedy show, preferably one that in some way celebrates womanhood. In New York City, comedians Natasha Vaynblat and Madalyn Baldanzi are performing at UCB on Wednesday, followed by "The Female Gaze," which features an all-female cast.
10. Try a ritualistic skin-care regimen.
Breakouts and wrinkles are probably just about the last thing you care about right now. I'm a beauty editor and I feel that way, too. But hear me out: Going through the methodical, step-by-step process of cleansing, toning, masking and moisturizing can be incredibly therapeutic and calming. In certain instances, just thinking through the process of simple skin-care steps with a predictable outcome has been anecdotally proven to calm anxiety.
Chances are, you've shed some tears and your fluids and electrolytes could use some replenishing right about now.
12. Take a bath.
Gather some candles, Epsom salt and a good book (preferably something far removed from reality, like "Harry Potter") and take some time for yourself.
13. Find a safe space.
Feeling safe might seem out of reach right now. But if you have the opportunity to seek out a place where you can be surrounded by other women, do so. In other words, embrace your local girl gang. Women's clubs, like New York City's newly opened The Wing, have been opening their spaces to all women:
Love yourselves and each other, guys. We'll find a way though this.