This lockdown feels harder than previous ones and there's a reason for that, says a psychologist.
"There's probably a strong sense that we know we can do it but we don't want to and we're sick of it," Dr Kirsty Ross said.
"Twelve months ago this was a novel situation. We didn't know we would be able to do it. We were energised by being in a new situation. Our body responds to a new situation with bursts of adrenaline, getting us ready to respond."
But with Auckland now in its fourth lockdown, the novelty has gone with many experiencing a feeling of fatigue and burn-out, the Palmerston North clinical psychologist and Massey University lecturer said.
Ross said it was important to acknowledge that life can be hard under level 3 and to avoid immediately jumping to the common "at least" scenario.
That was when someone is going through a difficult situation and someone else responds with "at least this didn't happen", forcing the person to consider the "silver lining".
"It feels really invalidating when people immediately [say] "look at the silver lining and look at the positive". We have to allow people [to] acknowledge and normalise the toughness of [the situation]."
Giving people the chance to vent their emotions is important before considering the silver lining, she said.
"When people feel they've been heard it helps to settle those feelings."
"When you start to go personal, that's when people feel as though they have to protect themselves by not coming forward [with information]. Psychologically, let's make sure we're being angry and frustrated at the right things rather than making people feel terrible about themselves."
There here and now
Covid response minister Chris Hipkins said yesterday "there is light at the end of the tunnel, but it's still a very long tunnel", regarding New Zealand's Covid situation.
Ross said while there is light at the end of tunnel, it's not always helpful to look too far ahead.
"It's not always that helpful if we have no control over how that will unfold. What's better to do is focus on the here and now and in some ways put the blinkers on and [think] - you know what, we will have a better timeframe as we get closer to the end of it but for now I'm just going to focus day by day or week by week.
"I'm just going to make sure every day I do something to exercise my brain, fuel my body, to connect with people, to do something that fills my cup and actually fills my wellbeing and hauora and wairua and soul."