Responding to Viral Fear – SMARTER THAN CROWS

Consider the pathology of fear contagion. Your thinking is streamlined and simplified to three choices; fight, flight or freeze. All three have merit in different situations. The only logic you need to employ is which of these will best serve you in the current situation. Get this wrong and you might die. In a state of fear you will also find it very difficult to consider any alternative options, or to engage in sensible discourse about their relative merits.

You watch some online content that frightens you. It describes circumstances beyond your control and futures so awful they are terrifying. Your adrenaline kicks in and it’s closely followed by cortisol. Your pulse quickens. Your body diverts blood to prepare you to respond to the threat. You cannot fight this. You cannot run away from this. Doing nothing is not a choice because the consequences are horrific! All three instinctive options are unavailable. Your fear increases. To give yourself some sense of agency you share the content with as many people as possible. Like a rock in a pond the fear echoes out across your networks, and their networks, and so on and on around the planet.

You don’t have to do this. It is possible to teach yourself to take a beat when you are facing fear. Police officers and other people in high stress occupations need to learn this. When they don’t the results are tragic. People shot, injured, arrested, beaten up; a frightened person who can’t control their response to fear will fight, freeze or flee. When you don’t the consequences might not seem as significant, but a reverberating cacophony of fear has the potential to become self-sustaining.

Responding to viral fear – SMARTER THAN CROWS

How does one find the truth around fear based mass media, social media, etc?

Ask questions!

Who benefits FINANCIALLY from the never ending fear or panic mongering, and the ‘solution’ offered?

Where is the money trail leading that is associated with the fear or panic?