Anxiety in times of COVID: taking care of mental health, a pillar to combat it
In view of the anxiety problems caused by the pandemic, it is essential to take care of mental health.
A year ago, the WHO (World Health Organization) declared COVID-19 a pandemic. In 365 days, many unusual things have happened. Care and norms that were not previously part of the imaginary have been incorporated into everyday life..
Human relations have been transformed into something different; from then on, bonds are sustained by other means. Many professions have been enhanced and it has been revealed how vulnerable human beings are. But... has the importance of mental health been taken into account?
Subjects are made up of a physical and psychic apparatus that work in a complementary way. It is necessary to take care of both in order to be in good condition and thus be able to face destabilizing events like this one..
Anxiety problems in pandemic months.
Psychoanalysis states that the subject is psychic and social; he enters the world through a family that welcomes him, protects him and gives him the keys to inhabit life. Therefore, the subject needs others in order to live, develop, grow and exchange.
Taking into account the above and the current state of semi-confinements or restricted mobility and possibility of meetings (and with a year of these limitations behind him), it is clear that states of anxiety multiply.
Two issues must be taken into account: on the one hand, loneliness as an unsatisfactory situation, although almost obligatory in some circumstances; and the restriction of links (meetings, encounters, etc.). Both issues trigger scenarios that must be managed in order not to become ill.
It should be noted that stress reduction is a perfect ally for the preservation of our health. The states of anxiety subject the organism to lowered defenses and make it more sensitive to physical diseases.. Therefore, it is essential to have a state of mind that favors the immune system. With psychoanalysis we can work on this path, producing a new subject that gets rid of those issues that generate discomfort, modifying words, phrases, mechanisms.
There is a global reality in the world of 2021 that cannot be managed at the individual level, it is bigger than the subject. However, a change can be produced in each individual that will have an effective impact on this reality.. And that is the only way for that reality to change, by modifying one's own positioning. Waiting for the "storm to pass" is the least productive idea.
Each one chooses which path to take and all of them are valid, the question will be given by the desire that commands, by the overdetermination of each one. They are all ways of enjoying and, although it often sounds contradictory or difficult to understand, in suffering (in the symptom, the anguish, the phobia, etc.) there is also an enjoyment. Nothing is really wasted, but something more or less healthy is made for one. One product (health) or another (symptom) is generated; all are ways of resolving a psychic conflict.
Now then, if one waits for "everything to pass" to resume "life", one wastes the opportunity to discover things to do, new things to learn, new ways to learn, new ways to live.new things to learn, new things to do, new ways of doing. We are missing the opportunity to add a way of enjoying and the sorrow for this lost time can generate an illness.
The defense mechanisms of displeasure
Pain and fear are defense mechanisms that human beings have when faced with dangerous situations; likewise, without a certain amount of anguish, desire is not achieved.. That is why it is necessary to put anxiety to work.
The key will be to become the subject of one's own life instead of a spectator, to take that leap. That is the only change that can be made, to modify the position. Transforming the psychic reality will be the one that will allow us to modify the material reality. It is a matter of learning to substitute, to know how to add, to add ways of doing and not to get angry with this situation (which we cannot control beyond ourselves).
The best way to do this work and to achieve a healthy mental health, which allows to deploy all the potential of the subject by putting himself in control of his life, will be to psychoanalyze himself. Through such a fundamental element as analytical listening, the subject will be able to decompress those words spoken to the wrong person, those shouted silences, and will be able to talk to the person who needs to be talked to.
Currently the need to feel listened to is the most urgent demand.. The problem is that on many occasions we talk to the wrong person. In the consultation with a psychoanalyst, the patient feels listened to without prejudice, without judgment. He knows that the analyst will not take sides or tell him what to do or not to do. And that is why, because the analyst is neither frightened, nor impatient, nor annoyed, the patient will be able to speak freely about whatever he wishes.
From the moment the patient can put words to what is happening to him, he begins to improve. Because words construct the subjectis traversed by them. If he cannot speak, if he cannot put into words what is distressing him, he becomes ill. To talk is to begin to heal.
(Updated at Mar 28 / 2023)