Three Major Mental Effects of this Pandemic and How to Counter Them!

By now, it should be a solid year Cambodia has declared the attack by the current pandemic. The first outbreak was detected in Siem Reap last year. For some reason, we survived a few outbreaks. Still, the new wave, dating February 20th, proves stronger than ever, taking a few Cambodian lives already. As a result, I had the time to reflect on the mental effects COVID-19 might have caused us, even non-patients. Brace yourself as the next paragraphs may transcend your realities!

1- Procrastination is Real

We have come to tolerate the tardiness of our work. When we reached a stable phase and looked back, we go, “Why shouldn’t this have been done earlier?” Oddly enough, we forgot we were the one to allow it to happen that late! Despite this unwanted procrastination, I’d say we need to update each other of our commitments, no matter how late they may be. Better still is to keep ourselves busy with online education, as mentioned in this previous post!

2- Moral Injury Affects us all

As elaborated in this article, moral jury would have rather affected war veterans, who could have other saved their fellows. In this modern time, due to fast infection, we couldn’t even stay by our loved ones in the last minute. Worse is our inability to bury the deceased, discomforting some religions. I believe if any measure is taken by our medical authorities, this rather means well to us, the living. This compliance will not only keep us alive, but also other lives safe – physically and morally.

3- The New Normal is More Virtual than Physical

This part feels unfamiliar to some, when one has been so used to face-to-face interactions. Although a previous post of mine addressed online interactions, until now, I realize these have not benefited my works that much. How many of you have gone on Zoom, disabling your video feature and acting as if you care about your colleague(s)?! I understand that muting yourself in such conversations may keep them from hearing unnecessary noise. Still, for an “empathic” compromise, I’d suggest the callers show their faces – if not videos – in the beginning and end of such e-meetings.

To sum up, we are still facing some uncertainty of this pandemic and its long-lasting trauma. As we are spiritual beings, virtuality does not seem that bad, especially when we still care about our causes: family and work 🙂 After all, let us bear in mind to not use COVID-19 as an excuse to stop moving forward in life.

PS: Sorry I have no bonus video for this post. But you may feel energized again after reading this article. It covers mindfulness at workplace shared with me by Narin from MastermindClub 🙂

Chaos and characters

Now that most of us are home quarantined, come with me on this journey of self-reflection through this unexpected chaos: Coronavirus or COVID19. Well, I guess this topic seems so sexy and trendy. Yet, what you’ll follow here is my personal stand – if not character – on what has happened to us lately. Of course, as usual, I’d like to shed positive light of this current chaos anyway.

What is it?

According to International SOS, COVID19 or SARS-CoV-2 is a new virus, first identified in people with pneumonia in Wuhan, China, in late December 2019. It probably started in animals, but is now spreading between people.

How is it spread?

It probably spreads the same way as colds and flu – through droplets created when we talk, cough and sneeze. People can get infected when these droplets enter the nose, eyes or mouth. Touching contaminated objects puts the droplets onto your hands. If you touch your face the droplets can enter your nose / eyes / mouth.

How have we coped with it?

Here comes the most critical issue when I first heard of COVID19. Even my healthy-looking friends became the first ones to panic! They kept sharing the increasing cases in other countries and, of course, in Cambodia with us. The flow of information got so unbearable that I had to ask some of them to stop spreading it. Funnily enough, I have found 4 main types of people reacting differently to such a pandemic.

1- Covidiots -01

This newly coined term designates someone who resists to the social distancing protocol, thus leading to further spread of this disease. Although I personally spot only a bunch of this type, I believe this indifference has contributed to swift contamination, especially in the case of Italy. In order to contour this effect, the Italian government has even issued the law to fine those who refuse to self-isolate under such critical circumstances.

2- Covidiots -02

We still call these people “idiots” in the sense that they needlessly bombard stores or markets, fearing COVID19 might deprive them of vital supplies. As a result, others would lack these necessities, which should be fairly stocked at home! Should I say they would cause a next global recession?!

3- “Covidramatists” *

These social media users can be still covidiots, while all they do every day is to update everyone in their networks about how terrible the situation can go, from day to day. It amazed me how they seem to do “better”, yet dramatic reporting jobs than professional journalists, without filtering such content!

4- “Sane”

I’d call this group “rare gems”. They study everything about Coronavirus and assess its spread and impact before they accept any related update or news. Eventually, they tend to keep their network positive and abreast of only reliable news. They can always react like a covidiot or a reporter! Yet, they know when or how to jump in as to not stir the dirt even further.

After reading and following all the insight and updates so far, I would recommend, above all, to you personal hygiene and social distancing. With the increasing cases spotted all over the globe, staying home with you family is the best prevention you can take right now.

Physical care aside, keep our mind clear like water. If a stain drops in it, let it be. Over time, the stain will go away or sink down. Ultimately, our spirit will remain clear and accept new – better experiences. Most importantly, you are now given the choice of your character to cope with this “temporary” crisis.

PS: If you fear COVID19 befalling you, consider buying a health or life insurance policy already, for the sake of your family! Which I already did, not necessarily for this particular cause!

PPS: If you opt for the sane way, click here for your spiritual gift, of course, besides medical protection.

*This term is just nicely coined by my poet-filmmaker friend, LY Polen!