3 Instantly Effective Ways to Secure Your Mental Wellbeing
Have you ever likened airport security to the security of your mind?
Well, after 3 years of studying risk management and airport security in grad school, I came to recognize the two entities as nearly one in the same. Allow me to explain …
Biopolitical Security – The Key to Optimal Airport Security
The plain and simple definition of biopolitical security is creating a security environment that deems certain behaviours as acceptable, so that the population within that environment can both survive and thrive.
To both survive and thrive, the population is safe and secure, while also able to continue living their lives as usual.
An airport is a great example of a biopolitically secure environment because, not only are those within the airport, safe, they are also able to thrive by shopping at stores, drinking and eating at restaurants, kids can play in entertainment areas, and work can be done on laptops and computers in lounge areas.
There are three basic steps for creating a biopolitically secure environment like an airport; those steps are (1) identify vulnerabilities, (2) implement reactive behaviour when vulnerabilities are threatened, and (3) implement proactive behaviour to recover faster after vulnerabilities are threatened.
Biopolitical Security – The Key to Securing your Mental Wellbeing
The coolest part about biopolitical security and the three steps you can take to achieve it, is that those three steps can be applied to any scenario, including your personal life.
So if you want to both survive and thrive in your life, here’s how you can apply your biopolitical security strategy:
Step 1: Identify Vulnerabilities
Vulnerabilities (used as a noun) are anything you want to protect. These things, when left unprotected, are susceptible to attack or injury.
In an airport, the biggest vulnerability is the people.
When it comes to my mental wellbeing, one of my vulnerabilities is ruminating over negative thoughts, particularly the thought, “I am stupid”.
Maybe one of your vulnerabilities is that you get stressed and overwhelmed easily.
Once you identify your vulnerabilities, I want you to ask the question “Now What?” As in, “Now, what must I do to protect my vulnerabilities from being threatened and recover quicker when they are threatened?”
Asking a “what” focused question is going to help you move forward and find solutions. Normally you may ask “why” focused questions such as “why me?” or “what did I do to deserve this?” You will likely never get answers to “why” focused questions and they keep you focused on the negative.
Step 2: Implement Reactive Behaviour
Once you asked the “now what” question, I want to you implement reactive behaviour so that you can respond better when your vulnerabilities are threatened. By responding appropriately, you recover quicker and become a functioning version of yourself again (i.e. you develop resilience).
A reactive strategy in an airport is security guards – when a person is threatened in a airport or if someone is acting suspicious, a security guard will react by diffusing the situation, questioning the suspect, or detaining the suspect. The goal of the security guard is to react and protect the airport population.
My personal reactive strategy after I ruminate over a negative thought such as, “I am stupid,” is ask myself, “is this thought realistic?” The answer is usually “no this is not realistic. I simply need more practice,” or “I simply made a mistake.”
If your vulnerability is that you get overwhelmed easily, your reactive strategy could be journal or do yoga.
The goal of your reactive strategy is to “reset” to homeostasis / your equilibrium / your personal peace.
Step 3: Implement Proactive Habits
The final step is to implement proactive strategies. This means, start doing something now to help you recovery quicker when your vulnerabilities are threatened. That’s right, I said “when” – meaning that I want to expect and accept the possibility of the the worst case scenario happening. But when it does, you will be ready!
A proactive strategy in an airport is building the windows with shatter proof glass, so that if (God forbid) there is an explosion, there will be little-to-no damage to the windows and little-to-no people will be injured from shattered glass.
My personal proactive strategy involves changing my personal narrative to be more positive than negative. That means I proactively tell myself things like “I am intelligent” and “I am a good problem solver” so those thoughts become my default, instead of “I am stupid.”
I made five videos on my Instagram account explaining 5 narrative “swear words” I no longer use and which positive narrative words I replace them with.
Make this the #YearofYou
Once you implement your three-step biopolitical security strategy, you are going to be able to both survive as well an thrive in your personal life. Your mental wellbeing will be protected so that even when it is threatened you will be able to be resilient.
And if you already follow me on any of my social mediums, you know I like using a different phrase – once you implement your three-step biopolitical security strategy, you will make this the #YearofYou!
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Disclaimer: I am not a medical or mental health professional. Any information and content on my website is not a substitute for professional health advice.