The Internet's Newest Danger: Election Addiction: Page 2

Posted October 29, 2008

Mike Elgan

Mike Elgan

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The threat of Election Addiction, of course, is that you could damage relationships with nasty partisanship and ugly bickering. You could also harm your career by neglecting work.

In the final week of the election, poll margins will narrow and the dirt will really start to fly. And if the election is close, and accusations of foul play emerge, it could get really ugly for months after the election as well.

There are things you can do to protect yourself against being overwhelmed by Election Addiction. The first step, of course, is to admit you have a problem.

The second step is to find a less damaging outlet. Political shoutfests themselves aren't damaging. It's only bad if it's ruining your relationships.

If you're spamming friends and relatives with political e-mail, guess what? You're probably honking off people you care about. It's time to start trying to influence strangers instead.

Try using Twitter as your outlet. The benefit of Twitter is that anyone can stop following you if they like, and you could potentially influence more people with your opinions.

The third step is to protect your work. Make a rule to yourself that you absolutely, positively will not check any political sites or respond to any political e-mail during working hours.

The fourth step is to cultivate detachment. Check your state on the main Pollster.com map. Unless you live in one of the handful of swing states, the outcome for your particular state is already essentially determined.

For example, if you live in any of the dark blue or dark red states, don't worry about it! If you live in California or Maine, for example, you should know that Obama will get all those electoral votes. If you live in Texas or Alaska, McCain will get those. The decision has already been made for those states. That means you can relax.

(If you do live in a swing state, well…good luck!)

The fifth step is to regain your sense of humor. Favor the mocking, irreverent humor political content over the screaming, conspiracy-laden serious kind. After all, if you can't laugh at politicians, you've got a problem worse than Election Addiction.

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Tags: video, Facebook, search, services, e-Mail

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