The crisis of COVID-19 and the resultant prolonged lockdowns have brought to fore many social and psychological tendencies in people that would have otherwise been ignored or hidden, had it not been for the ‘new normal’ that we all are adjusting to.
Social distancing, disruption of the previous social order, interruption in the way of life and periods of isolation have affected all spheres of human society and continue to shape human psyche as we speak.
Children and students have been an impressionable section of society since a long time and the COVID-19 pandemic has greatly affected this section. When social distancing, quarantine and isolation became the public lingo, educational institutions had to come to an abrupt closure. The sudden decisions of distancing, anxiety about postponed exams, uncertainty linked to the continuance of education, the sudden shift from community classrooms to online classes and apprehensions about the outcome of the prolonged crisis caused by the Covid-19 outbreak has brought students down.
Education is seen as the compass of life for a student. In the recent times, with the axis of conventional education broken, students tend to be aimless and lethargic, even in the existence of online classes.
According to a recent study by Save The Children, almost one in four children living under COVID-19 lockdowns, social restrictions and school closures are dealing with feelings of anxiety, with many at risk of lasting psychological distress, including depression. What started as that long vacation we have all been wanting all our life, has now become a conundrum of boredom and anxiety, feelings of helplessness, loneliness and fear of being socially excluded, stigmatized or separated from loved ones are common in any epidemic, and prolonged stress, boredom and social isolation, as well as a lack of outdoor play during COVID-19 Pandemic has led to a higher number of mental health conditions in children, such as anxiety and even depression.
With no proper framework to life and things going topsy turvy in 2020, student life has become a mixture of uncertainty and boredom where even procrastination does not matter anymore.
In such scenario, it is necessary to keep yourself engaged. Allow yourself to get bored, rest up without letting it bud into anxiety. If there was an online course you wanted to do since some time now, now is the time to sign up. If there was a hobby you left as a child, invest in it again. Find time with your family, share your fears with your siblings and take those online classes seriously. Parents and guardians should make sure the youngsters don’t feel ignored or criticized. The lockdowns can be a time of delicate mental health for many and we can be more accepting and understanding of others psychological needs. The pandemic can be a waste of time or a time of self-improvement depending on how you see it.