We’re all trying desperately to cope with the crisis of a pandemic. We know that grief, fear, and hardship are hitting millions of people, both at home and around the world. We know it’s not going to magically get better all of a sudden. No one has a cosmic magic wand with which to sprinkle glistening fairy dust over our crown chakras and clear the dark, heavy energy of all that’s accumulated as a species since humans have been walking upright.
So then … how do we deal? How do we get through the day?
Melanie takes a look at the evidence-based solutions for how to cope in a crisis using disaster and trauma psychology.
From a recent Scientific American article, “Megan Hosey, a rehabilitation psychologist at Johns Hopkins Medicine, says that ‘most of us … “will be able to adapt and recover.” To do so, however, we will need to be flexible, open and honest with ourselves and learn how to take things one day at a time.'”*
It turns out that there are five top psychological needs common to everyone in a crisis. William Garmoe, a neuropsychologist, has researched important psychological needs people have in the midst of a disaster. Those “top five are to feel safe, calm, self-efficacious, socially connected and hopeful. When people engage in activities that benefit others, they may be able to check off three of those needs — feeling more useful, [being more] connected and hopeful about the future.”*
Head’s up: it’s normal to feel extra anxious and/or depressed and/or overwhelmed in a crisis. We’re in a pandemic. And we’re also in a massive crisis that’s just beginning to register on people, which is the one about the climate.
How we manage our feelings, which is what triggers our behaviors, which feeds the feelings, is everything.
As rehabilitation psychologist, Mana Ali says, “You can feel scared and fearful and angry and resentful and simultaneously be a victor and be resilient.”*
Listen in as Melanie shares research findings and ideas for how to cope with a crisis, including a disaster such as the Covid-19 pandemic.
*Scientific American article, Coping With Pandemic Stress, by Melinda Wenner Moyer, March 2021 here