Three Things Happening to Your Mental Health Right Now
If you are currently anxious (or freaking out) due to coronavirus and lockdowns there are likely to be three reasons. Understanding these reasons will help.
Because you are anxious, you won’t like to read much, so I will make this really simple at first. Then you can read more detail later in some links I will give you at the end.
Problem Number 1
Ever since you were born, your body has responded to threats (such as being hungry or cold when you were a baby). You didn’t always complete your response to all of these threats. As a result, you have unfinished responses to threat stored in your body. This is uncomfortable.
A lot of what we do in our lives is an effort to make this more comfortable. A certain amount of our socialising, shopping, eating, drinking and relationships is done for this reason. A lot of these things are now impossible. Without them, we start to feel the stirrings of our unfinished responses to earlier threats. And that doesn’t feel good.
Problem Number 2
Right now, there is a real threat. The coronavirus is an invisible, airborne agent of potential death in the world. That’s really worth a threat response.
When you put these two things together, you get a perfect storm in something called your limbic system. This is your mammal and reptile brain. It is an early part of your brain which evolved to respond to threat. This is very important to evolution (because it is how you survive) so your limbic system is very good at it.
Problem Number 3
Your human brain is less good at dealing with threat. It thinks a lot and doesn’t yet know that your response to threat is hardwired into your body. So, it tries to control your body, and this just makes things worse.
If you are freaking out right now, it is because of these three things; you are starting to feel all your unfinished responses to earlier threats, and you are also under real threat, and you are trying to control your limbic system with your thinking brain. Once you put that cocktail together, you are in big trouble.
This is very easy to say, but harder to do. You have to let your limbic system take over. You do this first by educating the mind about all of the above, so that it lets you let the limbic system take over.
Then you can quieten the mind and wake up the body with a number of techniques (not limited to meditation or yoga). But you can’t really do that very well until your thinking brain understands why you should.
So, these links will help you to understand the problem explained above, and point you towards ways to solve it. I hope that is helpful.
Once you know what you are doing, you can use these Resources to help your limbic system to recover. And if you ask me any questions below I will do my best to answer asap