The lockdown syndrome

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The lockdown syndrome

Sunday, 26 April 2020 | Pramod Pathak

The lockdown syndrome

For the first time in their life people are experiencing this kind of a situation. We learnt that movement is life. We now realise that staying put is life. And this is for the whole world. Super powers with their guns and bombs appear clueless to the wrath of a tiny biological entity visible only with an electronic microscope. Human Intelligence and Artificial Intelligence never appeared so helpless. There is anxiety and fear all around as the questions what next or who next send a chill down the spines of entire humanity. Naturally, every body is stressed. Those who are inside worry when this will end. Those who are outside dread being so. A life style aberration of this magnitude was beyond imagination of all. As the rich worry how long would their stocks last, the poor wonder where the next meal will come from. And to make things worse social media sites are poisoning minds with scary scenarios. Coping with anxieties and thanatophobia of this scale is a tall order. More so because even in these times there are some who are offering magic solutions for a fee. But that is human nature. However, the important issue is not letting fear and anxiety worsen the plight. Here are some tips, and free, like all good things of nature. First and foremost, there is need to reassure yourself even if you are not sure. Indulge in some kind of auto-suggestion. The bad thing about good things is that they come to an end. But the good thing about bad things is that they also come to an end. The trick lies in engaging the mind positively. Remember, an empty mind is a devil’s workshop. The best antidotes for the adversities as well as the viruses are Faith and hope. Faith in God and hope that he listens. And he does. But to only who have faith. Don’t believe  so that you may have faith. Have faith so that you may believe. All other things follow from this. Even the most die-hard votary of the verifiability principle of science cannot deny that faith and motivation alter situations. Particularly this kind of a situation where medical science has little clue and is relying on para scientific ways to fight a pathogen that can be dealt with toilet soap. After seven decades of a world level agency dedicated to health. So there is little else we can do except relying on healing powers of faith. If the answer to the virus is immunity, we must know that fear and anxiety lowers immunity, while faith and hope strengthens it. But at the same time some physical exercise is also needed to boost the immune system. So engaging in aerobics for half an hour may do a lot of good. Health is wealth and we now realise why. But physical and mental resilience go together. The idea of Psychoneuroimmunology is now fairly accepted. And all this is not coming from actors who are looking for some time pass and engagement themselves or some modern day sorcerer who tries to find commerce in everything. This is research based opinion. And some genuine one. Though these days people researching in computer viruses are talking about biological viruses. But, that not withstanding, the times are tough and we will have to acquire toughness of the mind, the body and the soul also. For the soul then, do some good without posting on Instagram.

Pathak is a professor of management, writer, and an acclaimed public speaker. He can be reached at ppathak.ism@gmail.com

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