Due to the spreading of the new coronavirus, not just the entire Czech Republic, but also many other countries are under quarantine. Let's be honest with ourselves, the longer the restraining measures last, the more a lot of us lose our optimism. Many of us have encountered such negative emotions for the first time; we couldn't have imagined feeling this way before. Clinical psychologists and psychotherapists from the Masaryk University have therefore prepared a short list of recommendations for us that may come in handy in times of fear, anxiety or stress.
Anger, frustration, helplessness, but also shame or the feeling of guilt for one's actions. According to psychologists, these manifestations of emotions are quite normal now, in the time of crisis, so if you're going through similar mental states, you can be sure you're definitely not alone. Don't be afraid to tell someone about your feelings. Call your loved ones or take the time to explore your inner self. This won't last forever.
"Every crisis ends one day, every epidemic blows over. We have withstood worse diseases in the past. Our organism can take a great deal of stress and discomfort. It's not unusual for humanity, it's just that we've forgotten about it. It's normal not to be doing well all the time,"
The experts also advise that we try to actively work on our inner peace and good mood. Just as negative emotions or bad news can affect us, so can the positive and the good ones. Try and convince yourselves! I'm sure that at your workplace or while walking your dog, you will meet people who'll be looking at you with bright, smiling eyes from under their face mask.
Many of us are happy that we finally have time to sit down in front of the TV during the quarantine, yet psychologists advise taking a break from the media for a while. They believe there's no need to constantly monitor the newscast and surround yourselves with news and conspiracy theories. And what do you think? I admit that since my head has been swollen to twice its natural size size due to the constant stream of contradictory information, this "detox" from the media has been incredibly helpful.
Another thing that's important for our mental state is a regular schedule. That's why it's a good idea to use the current compulsory time off to do the chores that you've been putting off, or for self developement. Did you want to learn to draw, but there was never enough time? To dust off your old guitar and learn a few new chords, or to finally read the book you got for Christmas? Now you have the time and the right conditions.
"Every crisis is an opportunity and we can take something from it. Even if it was just the realization that one can survive without a weekend spent in a mall,"
Although we may experience anxiety sooner or later, experts believe there is no reason to panic. If anxiety gets the best of you, stop in your tracks, inhale and exhale slowly three times. Be aware of what you are experiencing and where you are. According to psychologists, the main source of anxiety are one's own thoughts - and these need to be stopped. Try to name the things you're surrounded with at the moment in your head. Stop and see what you hear, see, feel, touch, or taste in your mouth. While this advice may seem very simple and inefficient, the opposite is true.
"You get more in touch with the present, away from your thoughts and anxiety. You can employ this practice whenever your thoughts about the future get out of control,"
the experts advise. The so-called Triangular Breathing is another great way to combat an anxiety attack. Would you like to know the trick?
“You start with a free exhale and then a slow inhale through your nose, counting from one to four. After that, hold your breath for a short while, counting from one to four again. Another exhale through your mouth follows, again on a four-count,"
the psychologists describe one of the breathing techniques. And last but not least, one all-too-familiar but very well-proven piece of advice.