Six Risky COVID19 Behaviors To Avoid

April 30, 2020

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For many of us, the behaviors to avoid COVID-19 are simple, easy and essential. Handwashing, physical distancing, self-isolation, mask wearing are not hard tasks, but we generally fail at doing them consistently. In psychology-speak, adherence is our weak link. Behavioral pitfalls have the potential to kill ourselves and others. Here are six of them and how to overcome. 1-Normalization.  You get used to the idea of a deadly illness, and drop your guard. For instance, you shake the hand of someone because you've always done it. COVID19 makes this normal act a no-no. 2-Avoidance of embarrassment. You think that, for instance, wearing a mask looks really dumb and choose to not wear it at all over concerns of the imaginary opinions of others. Not taking the advice of professionals puts you at self-harm risk, so wear the mask and don’t worry if you think it looks silly or weak. 3-Ignoring other risks. You gorge on cookies and skip wearing a seat belt because there’s a pandemic. Well, those things are still bad for you! Stay the course on common sense actions. 4-Lack of feedback. There’s no immediate way to know whether your gloves and masks and disinfecting are helping or not—COVID-19 infections take days to appear. However as to the most current information we have, it is the best plan of action to protect yourself. 5-Status quo bias. Change is hard for humans, especially around ingrained norms. Tell yourself that this is an opportunity to look at many things anew, including how you connect with people. 6-Second guessing. No matter what happens, in hindsight you’re going to judge your actions. (“Why did I break up with my boyfriend a week before lockdown??” “I definitely caught this at the grocery store—why didn’t I use Instacart???” or “Why did I isolate for six months and gain 15 pounds for no reason?”) Gently remind yourself that hindsight bias is unavoidable, and nudge your thoughts elsewhere.

SOURCE: Fast Company

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