After all these days in quarantine and through unprecedented and challenging times, you’re likely feeling stressed, anxious or socially isolated—but it is possible to enhance your wellbeing and develop resilience. Insights from brain science can help you not just survive, but thrive.
Resilience is the capacity to recover, respond and bounce back from challenging times. Even if you don’t know the “back” to which you would “bounce” because the world may never return to the way it was, you still need the capabilities to adapt in uncertain or negative conditions. Resilience is the ability to understand the reality of a situation and make sense of it, putting it into context and keeping it in the perspective of the long term. It is also the ability to improvise and respond in fresh ways.
Brain science can help you adapt and respond—related to the way you connect, support others and take care of yourself. Here are 10 evidence-based strategies:
#1: Understand your instinct to connect. First, know your feelings of sadness or fatigue are normal, and a pandemic presents unique challenges. Because humans are wired for social connections, the need to distance from others is especially tough. A paper from Ludwigs-Maximilians Universitaet in Munich published in Current Biology explains that anytime humans perceive a threat, our natural response is to come together and seek safety in groups and in community. Unfortunately, the need to stay apart goes against our basic biology and instinct and creates dissonance and discomfort.
#6: Manage your perceptions. You know the saying, “I’ll believe it when I see it.” But research supports the inverse may also be true–you’ll see what you believe. Research by University College London found beliefs shaped people’s interpretation of data. And the University of California, San Francisco recently published new research in Psychological Science that found people’s emotions influenced their perceptions. When people felt more positively, they interpreted information more positively as well. The implication for the pandemic? Keep your spirits up and remind yourself things may not be as bad as you think. It’s possible your own concerns or anxieties are causing you to interpret things more negatively than you might otherwise. Stay positive and things around you will likely feel brighter.
Read the whole story: Forbes