Monday, May 25, 2009

How Your Brain Works When It's Terrified

So, Tuesday night I get to do a presentation....

It's entitled, "Responses to a Disaster - Or, How Your Brain Works When It's Terrified."

This should be a lot of fun, because it incorporates 3 of my favorite things: psychology, teaching and disasters. Put them all together - and you get me, teaching about the psychological responses in a disaster situation.

Life doesn't get much better than that.

So - what will I be talking about? Basically, the 3 phases that the average person goes through when confronted by a disaster (such as fire, flood, airline crash, tornado, etc).

The first phase will be denial. It's the typical, "This can't be happening to me" phase. Denial = inaction. Inaction = death. So, it is important that a person QUICKLY moves on from this phase and accept the fact that yes, indeed, this IS happening - and you'd better deal with it - quick!

The second phase is deliberation...this is when a person realizes they must do something to respond - but just what should they do? They will evaluate, gather information, and try to remember everything they were ever taught back in grade school on how to respond. Again - they must deliberate quickly - as seconds may mean the difference between life and death.

The final phase is action. Hopefully, they make the right decision.

There's a lot more to the presentation, of course - I'll be showing some facts and figures from some famous disasters, such as Sept. 11, 2001, as well as the Miracle on the Hudson...who did things right, who didn't do things right....

I hope it goes well - but in any case, it was fun researching.... !


No comments: