When a traumatic event hits – where your locus of control resides,
will greatly determine if that event will have a long term affect on your health and life.
Today my home state of Victoria just announced another (fifth hard sharp, five day lockdown) in Melbourne Australia.
So it is important to turn the trauma lens this week, on the effects of a lockdown to your health.
You can have a trauma in your life, if you have been: Failed, Attacked, Threatened, Abandoned, Terrorised or Abused by other human beings, and that their actions have made you feel (even for a split second) that you could die or be seriously wounded or hurt. Even if that didn’t eventuate.
This split second fear occurs because you don’t seemingly have control over your life’s safety. You could die – and for a moment there is nothing you can do about it. That moment is what fires the limbic brain’s amygdala, switching on a fire alarm in your body, which activates the lower brain into fight/flight to attempt to save you. And it can be quite a strong response in the body creating extreme stress and anxiety responses for years to come.
Having a fifth lockdown is now compounding the trauma/stress created by the first four lockdowns. Especially if people’s income/business have been severely affected. Losing a lot of income can feel like a serious threat to ones survival. And it can feel as bad as facing death, if there are no savings to fall back on.
So if this registers as a traumatic event, the fight/flight/freeze system kicks in. The fight – protests, anger, abuse for the government, blame and attacking. The flight – worry, anxiety, panic, firing staff, moving to the country.
The freeze – negativity, depression, giving up, feeling lost, withdrawing from the world. To name a few.
If your locus of control is outside of your body, then the lockdown can affect you as above. But..if your locus of control is within your body, you have a much better chance of limiting any traumatic reactions now and in the future.
To strengthen that internal locus of control, body mindfulness meditation is a great way to acquire that skill. Ongoing practice, helps keep that skill strong and a buffer to outside future unforeseen events.
Because from the inside you can control your responses. Body Mindfulness practice gives you more and more access to your internal world. The more you can access your body from the inside, the less affected you will be by outside circumstances and the quicker you can recover, when hit.
By focusing what’s happening right now in your body, you get more present, and can think more calmly in this moment, leading to better wiser decisions and less reactions day to day – however long the lockdown lasts