Chest? Clenched. Breath? Short. Stomach? In knots.
Welcome to the physical manifestation of this election season. There’s not much that rattles New Yorkers, but the presidential race has impacted some of the Big Apple’s calmest residents (and, it’s safe to say, every therapy session).
Beyond educating yourself on the issues, volunteering for candidates you’re aligned with, and—duh—making sure you vote, you’re not stuck in some verge-of-panic attack purgatory.
The city is filled with serene oases that can help you de-stress—and, even better, many of them can do it in under 30 minutes. (This is New York, after all—but if you do have more time to spare, indulge in a 60-minute floating session or a few hours at Aire Ancient Baths.) So make like Hillary Clinton, who’s a big fan of meditation herself, and book some speed-round chill time.
Here are four places to help you keep calm and carry on.
If MNDFL’s green wall doesn’t calm you down, a 30-minute guided meditation at the minimalist-chic studio should do the trick. There are classes nearly every hour—for election-related anxiety, go with Breath, Emotions, or Love (all themed options that will mellow out even the, ahem, nastiest woman).
MNDFL, 10 E. 8th St., New York, NY 10003, 212-477-0487, mndflmeditation.com
While infrared sauna treatments have gotten buzz for their ability to get you sweaty sans workout, there’s another great benefit: according to a recent study, they can mimic the effect of antidepressants. An express session at Higher Dose’s East Village or Union Square locations will up your serotonin levels in just 30 minutes.
Higher Dose, 21 E. 1st St., New York, NY 10009, 201-426-7282; 888 Broadway, mezzanine level, New York, NY 10003, 201-426-7282, higherdose.com
The Upper West Side location of Pure Yoga got its hands on one of these high-tech personal wellness pods just in time for the election. And they’re letting members and non-members book it. Select your mood, pull on headphones, and settle into the space age-y egg as you’re led through a 20-minute session, complete with color therapy (to help stabilize your stress-fueling cortisol levels) and binaural beats (which have been found to reduce anxiety levels).
Somadome at Pure Yoga, 204 W. 77th Street, New York, NY 10024, 212-877-2025, pureyoga.com
Is your usually foolproof meditation practice is no match for the emotionally charged election? Try adding some Himalayan salt to the mix. The therapy rooms at this spa are filled with the mineral, which some swear help with stress (as well as respiratory issues). Studies on it are scarce, but at the very least you’ll be forced to get off Twitter for 25 minutes as you relax on a lounge chair in one of their two Manhattan locations.
Breathe Salt Rooms, 1 Park Ave., lower level, New York, NY 10016, 212-725-1138; 825 7th Ave., lower level, New York, NY 10019, 212-956-5920, breathesaltrooms.com
Reaching for a Xanax? This buzzy, all-natural nutrient is said to relieve stress in 30 minutes. And if you need to calm down right now, try this five-minute meditation to stress-proof your mind.