For many of us, the emergence of Donald Trump as serious force in mainstream politics has made simply turning on the news or checking out social media enough to send our blood pressure through the roof. The world has never been without problems, but they seem particularly plentiful and severe as of late. Just since President Trump took office in January, we’ve seen ongoing tension at home and conflict escalating abroad, to the point of a potential nuclear crisis.
It’s easy to become overwhelmed by the state of the Union and world today, but there are steps we can take to reduce our rampant post-election stress. One of the ways I’ve found is reading The Trump Survival Guide: Everything You Need to Know About Living Through What You Hoped Would Never Happen by Gene Stone. Although it was written before Trump took the oath of office, the book is by no means obsolete; it examines issues that will continue to affect us throughout the Trump presidency, however long it lasts, plus offers the resources each of us needs to tackle those we care about most.
If you’re worried about the future being formed, here are seven reasons to read The Trump Survival Guide.
1It Prepares You For What To Expect
Many of Trump’s messages on the campaign trail weren’t exactly clear or consistent. Depending on the day (or even the time of day), he offered different stances on key issues. Needless to say, Trump’s flip-flops left big question marks regarding the actions he’d take once in office. That remains the case, even as we start to see his agenda take shape. With the help of Stone, though, we get a sense of different possible courses the administration may take and how we can prepare for the impact of each.
2It Breaks Down Key Issues
Trump may not have realized health care was so complicated, but policy issues as a rule tend to be complex. (Otherwise they’d have already been solved, right?) Stone recognizes this and does an honorable job of providing a primer on a dozen of the most relevant and divisive issues today. His book will leave you with at least a basic understanding of them all.
3It Places Today’s Issues In Historical Context
If the lessons of your high school U.S. history class have slipped out of your memory by now, the guide provides a great refresher. Stone succinctly revisits how we got to where we are in each section, from the days of the founding fathers up through President Obama’s final term.
4It Offers Useful Resources
With so many important issues to cover, The Trump Survival Guide can’t devote as many pages to them as they warrant. Instead, Stone’s book serves as a solid jumping-off place, and he recommends books and websites to take your learning and understanding further.
5It Lays Out Actions You Can Take
It’s easy to feel powerless against changes taking place in the uppermost levels of government, but Stone makes it clear that yes, we can make a difference. He lays out a variety of recommended actions, and while many involve donating to or volunteering with organizations fighting for specific causes, there are other options as well. They’re not all overtly “political,” either. Stone suggests acts as simple as engaging with people from different backgrounds and as rewarding as coaching a sports team to foster unity.
6It Will Fight Your Sense Of Powerlessness
Knowing that you can make a difference is a beautiful thing. The daily news might still be scary, but you won’t feel the same sense of helplessness. That alone is worth the three(ish) hours it will take you to read The Trump Survival Guide.
7It Will Motivate You
Even if you’ve already been resisting, Stone’s book will ramp up your desire to act. It serves as a reminder of everything at stake, while also offering a series of ways to fight. Now go on and get reading.