Stating that every situation that we feel threatened to our psychological or physical integrity is a source of stress for us, Expert Clinical Psychologist İpek Özaktaç from İstinye University Hospital Medical Park Gaziosmanpaşa, waking up with the alarm sound in the morning, trying to catch up to work or school, city traffic, noise and chaos in metropolitan cities He noted that stress factors such as being in the environment, expected earthquakes, economic worries, and tensions within the family are almost always in front of us.

Noting that with the first coronavirus case in our country, a new one is added to all these stress factors and quickly settled in the center of our lives, Expert Clinical Psychologist İpek Özaktaç made suggestions to stay away from pandemic stress.

Emphasizing that our resources determine how we deal with a certain stress situation, Expert Clinical Psychologist İpek Özaktaç said, “Resources mean everything that is good for us. We divide resources into internal and external resources. While our belief system is one of our internal resources, our social environment becomes our external resource.

Therefore, while performing our prayers in line with our religious beliefs every year during Ramadan, being at crowded tables with our loved ones, sharing a common feeling and maintaining special routines for this month is psychologically empowering. However, the new restrictions introduced with the increasing cases force us to continue the month of Ramadan in our own home, with our nuclear family, as in the previous year. This situation can be much more challenging, especially for people who live alone ”.

Reminding that our mobility decreases due to the restriction of the hours spent outside, and our access to cultural activities such as cinema, theater, concert and exhibition as a result of prolonged prohibitions, Özaktaç said, “During the pandemic period, the uncertainty we felt intensely and increased concern and It becomes much more difficult for us to cope with feelings of fear.

Changes in sleep and appetite, social introversion, attention and concentration problems, bodily pain (such as headache, clenching, tension in the shoulders, stomach ache or palpitations) or excessive thinking are some of the difficulties we may face when our stress increases.

Underlining that it is very important to provide psychological resilience by increasing our coping skills in this period, Psychologist İpek Özaktaç listed what we can do for this as follows;

“Do not compromise your sleep, nutrition and personal hygiene by maintaining daily routines. Stay in touch with your social circle as much as possible, while paying attention to distance rules. Spend time for activities and hobbies that you know will be good for you by doing social media detox at regular intervals. In order to cope with stress, try to relax your body and mind with relaxation exercises, yoga or spine relaxing movements. “

Psychologist İpek Özaktaç said, “Activities that can be done at home with other family members will help us combat pandemic stress. Various activities such as playing board games, reading humor magazines, doing puzzles and artistic activities will be useful in coping with stress. Organizing a movie night at home or doing sports will also be good for the person.

Psychologist İpek Özaktaç added that the biggest motivation in this period when we are going through a spiritually challenging and exhausting period is not to lose hope for the future, “Try to realize what the pandemic process makes you feel, what it makes you think, and whether these feelings are expressed anywhere in your body. Stay in touch with these feelings and remind yourself that all of these are quite normal, human. Ultimately this is a process, it started somewhere and will end somewhere.

Try to refresh your hope, belief and motivation periodically by reminding yourself that the process will end somewhere and somehow. We will experience the positive effects as well as the compelling effects of the pandemic process together. “We will come out of this period by learning, changing and transforming together.”

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