Our Mental Resilience Has Increased during the Pandemic

Source:China Youth Daily
Release Time:2022-09-19

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, life on earth has changed dramatically. Masks have become essential items to go out, travel has become a distant memory, and trending topics such as "the time stolen by the epidemic" often "break our defenses".

The negative impact of the epidemic on people is too numerous to mention, but the only thing we can do is face it bravely and move on. When you look at it from another perspective: does the pandemic bring us only negative effects? The silver lining is that the pandemic has also brought us some rare surprises.

Domestic studies have found that public psychology shows a "short-term tension and long-term stability" during the epidemic. "What doesn't break us will make us stronger." After the epidemic, our psychological resilience has improved. Resilience is also known as psychological resilience, resilience, resilience, resilience, etc., which means that people who have experienced or are experiencing adverse situations (such as setbacks, trauma, natural disasters, etc.) can "bounce back", successfully resist adversity, recover, or even become stronger.

From a biological sense, psychological resilience is an instinct to protect and adjust oneself in the face of environmental changes out of survival needs. Mental resilience is not a gift that a lucky few have access to. It is a basic reflexes that are universal. It will show in adversity, promote human survival and development, promote people to pursue self-realization and self-transcendence.

The COVID-19 epidemic is a major test for the world. People's lives, health, work and life have been greatly affected, but many people have learned and grown in this test. During the epidemic, workers began to work at home, students took online classes, express delivery and takeout were also restricted, so many people became self-taught, from "no fingers in the spring water" quickly advanced to show cooking in the moments of friends, many people also "cultivate" become repairmen, Tony teacher, photographers, and even developed a number of artistic skills.

According to the 2021 National Health Insight Report released by the Lilac Doctor Data Institute, 74 percent of people have changed their outlook on life due to the pandemic, ranking "physical health", "family happiness" and "mental health" more among the "most important things in life". The change of these ideas also means that people's connotation of self-value and the meaning of life can be deepened and the extension can be expanded. Instead of being overwhelmed by the epidemic, people took the initiative to step out of their comfort zone, improve both inside and outside, and face the challenges.

Why does the pandemic boost resilience? Over the past 50 years of laboratory and clinical research on resilience, it has been found that the key to improving resilience is the optimal match between personal qualities, family support and external environmental support. Rather than creating a set of protective factors, the key is the experience and understanding of the process.

During the epidemic, the government, communities and professional organizations have established a strong enough support system for us. Friends and relatives can communicate with each other and provide social support through social networks even though they are far away from each other, and we feel a lot of kindness from strangers.

A 2021 study found that nearly 90 percent of people were willing to volunteer during the pandemic, and more than 96 percent were willing to help maintain social order, with daily volunteerism rates rising rapidly as infection rates increased. People are not only trying to adapt to life under the epidemic, but also trying to make life more enjoyable by discovering and recording the small comforts in their lives, reviving "epidemic literature" and supporting those in need.

So what's in it for people with increased resilience?

People with strong mental toughness tend to show positive psychological qualities such as optimism, self-discipline and tenacity, produce less negative emotions such as anxiety and depression, and are better at adopting positive problem-solving strategies and adapting to changes in the environment more quickly. Domestic and foreign studies have found that traumatic events such as injuries, natural disasters and accidents can not only bring negative effects on people's body and mind, but also enable people to develop strong inner strength and achieve positive personal growth. Such growth can not only restore the original psychological function, but even stimulate the performance beyond the pre-trauma level.

In addition to the combined effect of internal and external protective factors, the psychological resilience of the people has been improved, and many people's life goals have also changed as they experience this major test of life and health.

According to the theory of social emotional choice, as people grow older, because they feel that the time in the future is increasingly limited, their life goals will gradually change from future-oriented goals such as acquiring knowledge and expanding social relationships in their mid-teens to present-oriented goals such as emotion management and contact with familiar peers. In other words, when we are young, we are eager to learn new things and make new friends. When we are older, we cherish the precious time we spend with our friends and family. The onset of the pandemic has accelerated this process, making people more appreciative of the present and the close relationships they have.

I don't know if you have this feeling, but when you see the news about the epidemic, you will have a strong impulse to call and tell your family that you are safe, hug your partner who has been busy with work, or touch the head of your child who is struggling with study. People have experienced 70 years of spring rain, summer sunshine, autumn frost and winter snow to "follow their heart and not go beyond the rules". The sudden epidemic has unexpectedly "catalyzed" this process. Research has found that close, trusted relationships give us more emotional support. The closer we get to the end of our lives, the stronger our ability to regulate our emotions, increasing our positive emotional experience and decreasing our negative emotional experience, and further improving our happiness and life satisfaction.

In such an unavoidable situation, it is better to turn passive suffering into pleasure. While making good prevention and control strategies, we should find the present little happiness, respond to the challenges with an optimistic and positive attitude, and finally harvest and grow.

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