6 tips to undertake internal “self-healing” in a pandemic

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Martín Reynoso, psychologist and mindfulness instructor, is confident that this situation “will open a powerful period of individual and collective resilience and reconstruction.”

Difficult times that we live. Before, we taught in companies how to balance family and work life, rushing from one place to another. Now, we have to think about how to help people achieve that balance in their own homes, which have become protective trenches of the covid but also spaces of super demanded and tangled family and work reality.

For Carolina Muñoz Albiero, psychologist and coordinator of stress management programs at Train your Brain Argentina, “the life of each of us has changed significantly in recent months. The pandemic brought unexpected changes and now we are suddenly doomed to sustain routines that we never imagined and that require physical, mental and emotional adaptations from us ”.

The adaptations are capitalized: more time sitting and locked, less contact with open spaces and green, physical distance from loved ones and interruption of significant social activities such as cinema or theater, among some of the many abstinences that we suffer today.

And as for work and family, a capital salad that does not help us to discern, neither in time nor in space, in what context we are. Suddenly, we are with the computer in front but with a toy in hand while we sing to entertain our daughter. Hard times, times of pandemic. But beware: the output can be powerful, refreshing.

Three things complicate us on our way to find balance in our life of confinement, all relatives to each other: perfectionism, the desire for control and guilt.

He perfectionism It constitutes a way of demanding ourselves to reach an unattainable goal, very distant, with a certain severity and that causes us discomfort when we recognize the discrepancy of where we are and where we would like to be.

He desire for control It would be that impulse to cover all aspects of a phenomenon without having enough flexibility to adapt to what eludes us, to the ungovernable, to the unpredictable. It is a fairly self-centered way of relating to the world but greatly exacerbated by our successful culture.

The third aspect related to the above is the guilt, that painful emotion that reminds us that we act badly, we fail in the way we manage things and therefore we must continually remind ourselves.

All three are harmful, unfair and push us into twilight states of our being where enjoyment does not exist. Is the realm of dissatisfaction.

I am convinced that we can get ahead despite the difficulties. In pediatrics, for example, it is known that, when a child loses weight due to an illness, he will quickly regain it in a process called compensatory growth by which the body absorbs what it needs in a short time, with greater speed than normal.

Can something like this happen with our minds, with our sociality? I think so, that although there will surely be a great impact on us due to the socio-emotional restrictions that we have been suffering, it will also open a powerful period of resilience and reconstruction individual and collective.

Thinking about how to start this protective process right now, Muñoz Albiero gives us some advice:

✓Have the willingness to open up and give space to our emotions.

✓Allow us to take sacred pauses, stop and ask ourselves nicely: How do I feel? What I need?

✓Activate self-care in us. This in itself will facilitate our well-being but also acts as a brake on the self-demands that are automatically activated in us.

✓Not lose sight of what is valuable to our lives, even in this situation we can take significant steps in that direction.

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