Mental illnesses have a major impact on our society - and yet this topic is not sufficiently addressed in public. Here you can read about what science has learned about the psyche today, how psychological changes can be measured and how we can learn to be more self-caring.
Taboo topic psyche
Psychological changes and associated diseases are widespread and one of the great challenges of our time. At the same time, it is unfortunately a taboo topic in our society and considered being a stigma or weakness.
Psychological changes are difficult to grasp in their developmental phase. How can these small changes be made measurable at an early stage in order to avoid diseases? YourPrevention™ has collected hard data and criteria over several years to analyse them in a bio-psycho-social model. The following areas are evaluated together:
- Laboratory analysis of neurotransmitters and cortisol
- Self-assessment of inner attitude, personality and symptoms through questionnaires
- Measurement of physiological reactions: Regeneration and stress in everyday life
This holistic data enables us to create an exact risk analysis that shows how behaviour and psyche are depending on each other and how they have already changed.
Mental illnesses are on the increase
Mental illness is one of the biggest risks in the life of an employee today. Our measurements in companies repeatedly show similar results: About one third of the people examined show very conspicuous symptoms and a clear impairment of the state of mind and psyche, another third show pronounced symptoms while coping mechanisms are still working well, and the last third shows little or no symptoms while coping well. From an epidemiological point of view, we have quite similar alarming results as large randomised control studies on psychological changes.
Which approaches can be helpful here? A first step: This topic should definitely be de-tabooed. Psychological changes are part of our lives. It is normal that we react emotionally to stressful events in our lives. The question is how quickly we recover from these changes and whether they become chronic. It can be compared to an intensive infection. This will pass if you take care of yourself and have a good rest. If you ignore this, the symptoms may become chronic and the effects last much longer. This also applies to changes in the psyche. In this case, the test procedure can already provide clarity in an initial phase of change.
Transfer of new insights from science
This neurobiological approach combines laboratory data with behaviour and our inner intentions. Our inner attitude influences decisively why we do certain things and why we do not do certain things. The connections between lab data and behaviour are evident: If, for example, the catecholamines are up-regulated as a adaption to stress, nervousness, inner restlessness, physical agitation or even the inability to relax will increase. If the values are down-regulated, the consequences are loss of drive, exhaustion and the occurrence of strong emotions such as fear nad anxiety or sadness.
Another finding is the connection between the psyche and a lack of regeneration, which can be measured by heartrate variability. This insight into our physiology helps us to recognise significant losses in regenerative ability at an early stage so that we can then intervene with a clear focus and target. And various psychographic data from the questionnaires provide a picture of the causes of the changes. This insight is essential for a sustainable and systemic approach.
A holistic solution strategy then initially focuses on short-term support for neurobiology (mostly through biological precursors, no medication) to bring the system into balance. A change in behaviour can only be successful if a neurobiological balance is present. Many people are too exhausted to implement new things in their everyday life. This is why many strategies that focus exclusively on the behavioural level fail.
Only when energy, drive or emotional balance is restored new and sustainable habits can be established on a behavioural level. This also includes the improvement of regeneration, especially during sleep. So-called short micro-breaks (2-5 min) are also extremely important during the day: they train and activate our regenerative ability. Here, especially mindfulness-based exercises are state-of-the-art.
Of course, there are also some really serious psychological changes that make pharmacological interventions necessary. However, due to the enormous lack of time in the medical system today, psychopharmacological drugs are prescribed too quickly and too often. A holistic approach is hence longer, but without side effects but mostly more sustainable.
Of course, there are also some really serious psychological changes that make drug therapy necessary. Nevertheless, psychotropic drugs are today prescribed too quickly and too often due to the enormous lack of time in the medical system. A holistic approach is certainly more protracted, but without side effects and above all sustainable.
Change through self-efficacy
Due to the findings from neuroscience, we know today how the topic of self-efficacy and willingness to change can be supported with a specific focus. This has significantly contributed to our neurobiological balance and the ability of the brain being in a «learning mode». But it also has a lot to do with regularity. Particularly in mindfulness-based exercises, two minutes every day at the beginning over a period of three months are already enough to form new and stable neuronal networks in our brain. This creates new habits.
However, it is our inner attitude that influences how we are able to deal with difficult phases in our life. It is therefore important to break the taboo on this subject and to deal with it in an offensive and positive way. A good self-perception, a high degree of presence and an inner attitude of « accepting what is » enable us to handle psychological changes with confidence.
Start where you are.
Use what you have.
Do what you can.