Already under normal circumstances, there is enough to worry about, when looking around the globe. With almost a third of the global population in coronavirus lockdown and half a million people known to be infected, worrying too has grown exponentially.
It transforms connecting with reality to an incredible challenge. Existing habits, known rules, familiar ways to do things disappeared. What remains is a sense of lost control.
A sense people rarely care for. In situations of crisis even less.
It’s a reason to defend oneself against it. At least that’s what most people will do automatically.
Defense is a way of shielding against the things we don’t control.
It’s a form of denial. It’s avoiding to connect with that part of reality.
The efforts to regain control often lead to some kind of hyperactivity. There is panic buying taking the form of creating a sense of safety and control by taking in stocks of something practical that will be needed and might have become unavailable until then. There is also panic working, which is moving into doing for the sake of doing something and feeling busy. I’d say, that there is also panic caring, which is about seeing everyone in need of emotional security and seeking to provide space to express one’s feelings and emotions to receive reassurance.
All of these tactics serve distraction.
The hope for more control distracts from the own state of mind and the lost energy.
Burning out feeling like heroism.
The doing distracts from the work that needs to be done.
The work that helps.