COVID-19 is of course not gone yet, but many measures are a thing of the past. Only nice, many think, but picking up ‘normal’ life again can also be difficult. After more than 2 years of the corona, it seems as if we embraced our lives staying indoors, hanging out in a warm room made by the likes of vloerverwarming Amsterdam, and have avoided going everywhere again without any worries. Why is that?
Back to normal
Just a visit, to a restaurant, cinema or museum. Pre corona, these things are among the most normal in the world. Meanwhile, all these types of locations are accessible to the public again, but not everyone finds it easy to visit them again. Before, you probably don’t think about it and just leave home, but now it all seems a bit more difficult. The system is simply slightly different after 1.5 years of the corona, as it turns out.
According to the Belgian professor of psychology Inez Germeys, from the University of Leuven, this is also called the cave syndrome. This is a new term used to describe people who have become accustomed to sitting at home a lot due to the pandemic. That some have developed this because of the way man works. “Man is a creature of habit. We have had more than 1 year to adjust to the lockdown. Then it is difficult to accept the new change,” Germeys told the Belgian radio program Nieuwe Feiten.
Accepting these changes takes time and doesn’t take time from the 1 to the other day. “Leaving home, seeing people, and going to work or a café is a habit we need to rebuild. That takes time and will require an adjustment. It’s interesting because there’s something very double in it. People crave it, but once the time comes, there can also be a barrier to effectively leaving your home.”
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In addition to the fact that it is difficult for us humans to be confronted with a new reality every time, there is also still the fear of corona that makes it extra difficult for some to go back to life before the crisis. We want to, but is it possible? Of course, the reports of declining efficacy of some vaccines do not do this any good, nor do rising infection rates.
What is it about?
Which also causes the cave syndrome, according to Germeys, it goes away automatically in many people. Yet, according to her, that is not the case with everyone. “People who are stuck with fear are going to need help with that.” It is not the case that older people have more difficulty shaking this up than younger generations; everyone can suffer from it equally.
Do you find it difficult to go back to life before corona? Happiness psychologist Josje Smeets has several tips for you. She tells RTL Nieuws that, for example, it can help very well not to make 3 appointments on the weekend, but to start with 1. This way you can slowly get used to it again.
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