I came across both the above quote, and an article on how our brains are struggling to process the level of stress we’re all currently experiencing, and I thought it was worth sharing during these challenging times.
The headline Your ‘Surge Capacity’ is Depleted – It’s Why You Feel so Awful caught my eye in my Facebook feed. Written by science writer Tara Haelle, the article explores the concept of “surge capacity.”
“Surge capacity is a collection of adaptive systems — mental and physical — that humans draw on for short-term survival in acutely stressful situations, such as natural disasters. But natural disasters occur over a short period, even if recovery is long. Pandemics are different — the disaster itself stretches out indefinitely,” writes Haelle. “The pandemic has demonstrated both what we can do with surge capacity and the limits of surge capacity. When it’s depleted, it has to be renewed. But what happens when you struggle to renew it because the emergency phase has now become chronic?”
There is no question that we’re in this for the long haul, so how do we adapt so we can get through the next year or two and remain reasonably sane?
How do we adapt when the only thing certain about the “new normal” is its indefinite uncertainty?
Haelle offers suggestions ranging from recognizing that we’re all grieving, to learning to accept what is, to looking for activities that bring us joy. I’ve written about various aspects of this in past Sunday columns.
“Our new normal is always feeling a little off balance, like trying to stand in a dinghy on rough seas, and not knowing when the storm will pass,” Haelle writes.
I encourage you to read the full article, I hope you’ll find it helpful.