Thinking beyond pandemic needs few adjustments

Post Covid-19, new normal will need more mental health adjustments, psychiatrist Bajpai tells Kulsum Mustafa

Post Covid-19, humanity across the globe, will be largely healed physically. However, it will be carrying the additional emotional baggage of anxieties triggered by social sufferings. This will require urgent upsurge for handling by mental health healers. The totally transformed new social world, according to psychiatrist Dr Alok Bajpai, will require mental adjustment rules to be framed in the “new normal”.

Kanpur-based Dr Bajpai, who has been a practising psychiatrist for over two decades, is also credited with setting up the first children and adolescent mental clinic in Uttar Pradesh in 2008. The coronavirus has shaken humanity to the core and exposed humans to unpredictable circumstances leaving homo sapiens helpless, gasping and at a loss for survival solutions. Life and death are no longer about a region, religion or class. This pandemic has gobbled borders, shown no respect for wealth, celebrities, royalty, or respect for age. Covid-19 has attacked all and every human with a vengeance never witnessed in the history of human civilization.

According to Dr Bajpai, in the New Normal, when the health crisis subsides and the medical world finds a combat formula to fight the pandemic rush for new social equations will set in, a rethink will follow for mental stability and well being. That is when health healers will have to step in.

Survival says Dr Bajpai will only possible if the human species acquires a total transformation of both the mind and lifestyle. Mankind will have to accept social suffering as part of the global happening.

“Nothing, absolutely nothing will be confined to a region any longer. Human species is in deep crisis. The virus has had a huge psychological impact all around, said Dr. Bajpai adding that Covid-19 ‘s positive impact is that it has generated a fear that has forced humans to go slow on I and realize the potential of WE.

“The virus has taught us to look beyond ourselves. We humans have to reach out and help others. Hands-holding is not an option it is THE The ONLY option for survival, “ said Dr Bajpai.

“Covid-19 has taught us this most important lesson and one which Mankind must never forget -humans cannot live or progress in isolation. A healthy togetherness is important,” said Dr Bajpai, who has had two professional stints in Australia before he decided to finally settle down and work on home turf.

He said that while there are around 15 per cent who suffer serious mental disorders like schizophrenia, bipolar disorders, but the majority, which is around 85 per cent comprise those who are really not ill, all they require is to learn the balance and how to handle and cope with the stress of life. They need to rethink and readjust keeping in mind that the world is a big family and that they are just one unit of this family.

Hike critical thinking ability:

“Raise your mental bar” is the advice of Dr Bajpai. According to him, we have just got to consciously practice and enhance our critical thinking ability. This is the most important tool for survival.

“Like for the body wellness you have to develop a strong immune system, for the mind, you have to work on increasing your critical thinking,” said Dr Bajpai.

A strong practitioner of promoting the technique of empowering your mind to adjust to situations, Dr Bajpai, and his team have for the past 15 years been trying to promote this concept through workshops and seminars at schools, colleges. The concept is titled An hour with the Mahatama.

Mahatama Gandhi, says Dr Bajpai who along with his team has done intensive research on the Father of the nation, is the truest example of one of the humans who can be called the ‘Master of transformation theory.’ Gandhi’s entire life, explains Dr Bajpai, shows how 24×7 he trained his mind, experimented with everything he came across and then picked up and practised what was needed and best suited the situation most.

Dr Bajpai’s special focus has always been children and youth. Post Covid-19 too he will concentrate on this section. He says that it should be the responsibility of every adult to help the younger generation develop and nurture copying strength in their lifestyle. This is the whole mantra for survival in the New Normal.

He says that from Covid-19 crisis we must learn the virtue of patience. This virtue alone will strengthen the human mind and ensure mental wellness. Of course, we must follow all health laws and do not ignore the tedious but essential survival tips given by experts on hygiene.

Dr.Bajpai said that youth must be made to realise that breaking the happiness cycle is the first step towards survival. They have to learn that suffering is part of life and that wealth and position cannot buy health. Also, they must now realize that good of society is the good of individual and not the other way round as they have been believing and practising so far.

The doctor’s mantra for good mental health is to LIVE FOR THE MOMENT.

“Living one day at a time is the surest way of life in the New Normal,” is his parting shot. Nothing new may say, and you are right for we have heard this so many times before too. But seems now is the time to practice it.