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Containment resources

Psychologists’ tools

 

Covid-19, unknown until 3 months ago, is now part of our daily life and we had to adapt to the strict hygiene and containment measures that come with it. In order to apprehend them in the medium-long term, here are some leads to understand our psychic reactions, as well as our leverage in order to manage at best to avoid psychological distress.

 

Pandemic, the global epidemic

A health crisis of this magnitude is unprecedented on an international scale and inevitably generates concern given its rapid evolution, our lack of control over its spread, and the new and little-known nature of the virus. Feeling this is normal, we have the right to do so, and the opposite would be more worrying!

Good side:

We feel things like humans and we are not the only ones to experience them!


Containment measure

This measure is put in place to prevent the epidemic from peaking and becoming unmanageable for the medical system. That said, being confined to one’s home is not a natural situation for human beings, and can generate a range of symptoms such as mood swings, anxiety, sleep and concentration problems, for example.

Good side:

Strict measures reassure (in some ways), because they give you a feeling of control!


Manage your inner states

It is now a matter of managing one’s emotions, especially those caused by fear of infection, isolation, boredom, etc., so that one’s own behaviour does not become irrational or even out of control and harmful to oneself and/or others

Good side:

Evidence of mutual help is emerging everywhere and life priorities are changing!

 


 

Emotions

  • 1. Identify and name: anger, fear, sadness, etc.
  • 2. Express yourself: write, talk about it, draw, etc.
  • 3. Mitigate emotion by repeating the first two steps.

Social Contact (with distance)

  • e-Moments : e-coffee, virtual sports session.
  • Old School : e-mail, telephone, message… post card!
  • At least 2 contacts per day for 10-15 min.

Cardiac Coherence

  • 5 seconds of inspiration.
  • 5 seconds exhale.
  • Repeat for 5 minutes.

Framework

  • Precise time structuring.
  • Setting achievable goals and clear rules.
  • Keeping the old rhythm of life, with its routines and landmarks, while remaining flexible.

Medias

  • Official sources in priority (WHO, Governments).
  • Once in the morning and once in the evening. 30 minutes maximum.
  • Limit social networks!
  • Cut off alerts and notifications.

Altruism

  • Helping others, caring for others, volunteering.
  • Support for colleagues, whether they are in the office or teleworking.
  • At least 1 caring interaction during the day.

Mindfulness

  • Reserve a moment for yourself, and only yourself!
  • Get yourself in condition: relaxing audio/video, appropriate clothing.
  • Create a mental space that allows you to feel safe.

Control

  • Thoughtful decision making: importance versus urgency of tasks.
  • Activities that give meaning and stimulate creativity (cooking, crafts,...)
  • Taking a step back: "I can act on myself and partly on my relationships, but not on everything else!"

The website www.covid19-psy.lu complements the official government website (www.covid-19.lu) and contains useful information on mental health in times of health crisis. It was created in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and partners from the psycho-social sector.