What is a crisis in psychology and how to determine its development?

Crisis concept

Often a person is faced with a moment when he begins to worry about some problem. The feeling of excitement constantly intensifies and does not leave him, negative thoughts continue to constantly visit his consciousness. Often this problem arises due to a change that served as the impetus for the transition to a new stage of life. He does not agree with this change and is not ready to put up with it. This state is called a crisis.

Psychology briefly defines this concept. A psychological crisis is a person’s emotional state resulting from a stressful situation associated with unwanted changes in life. A more detailed explanation of the definition of crisis in psychology states that a crisis is a state of severe transitional change in a person’s feelings, resulting from experienced stress, associated with an illness, or resulting from mental trauma. A crisis is also determined by an emotionally significant event or a radical change in status in one’s personal life, which negatively affects a person’s moral well-being.

Stages of development of an identity crisis

Like any disease, an identity crisis has several forms. Each of them has its own symptoms and signs.

Immersion phase

It begins with an unreasonable deterioration in health. A person experiences tension and stiffness, excessive fatigue and constant tiredness. His actions are chaotic and even senseless.

At this stage it is difficult to concentrate on one thing. Hundreds of thoughts are swarming in my head. They pull out the most unpleasant moments from memory. Over time, consciousness turns into a black hole that sucks in more and more.

Deadlock stage

It seems to a person that he is left completely alone. He finds nothing better than to withdraw into himself. Nothing good comes from this dive. Endless introspection and thinking about the past only intensifies the experience.

The oppressive feeling of loneliness brings with it fear and uncertainty. At some point, emotional exhaustion begins. On the one hand, this is bad. But on the other hand, the person finally understands that he needs to look for a way out of the current situation. The best part is that he has the desire and strength to act.

Crucial moment

Despite the decline in moral and physical strength, a person begins to pull himself out of a state of crisis. He no longer hides inside himself, clears his consciousness of non-working attitudes and opens up to new experiences and ideas.

Types of crisis in psychology

There is a classification of crises experienced by a person, which differ in their form, sources of experiences and stages of his life development. Thus, psychology in life crises makes a distinction in three main areas:

  • Neurotic crises. They are based on age-related changes and can be generated in a person’s mind even without changing external conditions or the influence of external factors on his psycho-emotional state. As a rule, neurotic crises begin in childhood, when primary communications with the surrounding society and environment are established. This type of turning point in life predetermines, in fact, an unreasonable feeling of a hopeless situation, a feeling of being at a dead end. This entails personality disadaptation or, simply put, recluse.
  • Development crises. Otherwise referred to as age-related crises. In modern psychology, there are a number of boundary age stages at which the human emotional and psychological state changes, the perception of what is happening and the attitude towards the world around us varies. Changes in the form, duration and severity of such turning points depend directly on the specific personality of the individual and his typological characteristics, as well as on the social conditions of stay and pedagogical influence. Some experts consider the manifestation of an age crisis in psychology to be an absolutely normal phenomenon, since this is how the personal and characteristic components of a person as a social unit are formed. But many see this as a malignant manifestation that prevents a person from adapting normally to communicating with peers in childhood and adolescence and from finding communication in adulthood.
  • Traumatic crises. The psychology of children, adolescents, adults and the elderly is not immune from the negative influence on the conscious processes of such external factors as tragic life situations. Accidents, natural disasters and other catastrophic events provide a powerful impetus for the occurrence of depression and a long-term crisis process of stagnation arising from a stressful state.

Age crisis

In the system of life turning points, it is the development crisis that occupies a significant niche. Age-related crises in psychology are usually divided into nine stages.

  • Stage 1 – neonatal crisis. It implies instability at all levels of the infant’s physiological and psycho-emotional state. Accustomed to the established processes in the womb, he is not ready to immediately after birth adapt to another sphere of habitat. The psychology of the age crisis in infants is the mildest and most easily experienced, since difficulties are expressed more in the physical restructuring of the infant’s body.
  • Stage 2 – one-year crisis. It assumes the formation of a child who is open to the first educational processes. He learns to sit, walk, talk, and switch from breast milk to adult food. This is a kind of stress for a child, because he is crossing the border of the first year of his life.
  • Stage 3 – three-year crisis. It manifests itself in children in different ways, but is mainly determined by extreme stubbornness, whims and self-will. During this period of life, it is common for a baby to periodically refuse food that he does not like, resist going to bed, and not want to dress himself or put away toys.
  • Stage 4 – preschool crisis. Developmental psychology in a 7-year-old child is based on the formation of his social sense of his “I”. At this time, the baby begins to imitate adults, act in manners, and talk about his desires. This is no longer the same baby who can only pronounce individual words and carefree play with game attributes scattered on the floor. The age-related psychology of the 7-year-old crisis presupposes the child’s departure from early childhood and the loss of childish naivety and spontaneity. At this time, it becomes more difficult for parents to control their child, because the baby begins to spend more time outside the home, with his peers, and at school. The process of adapting to new living conditions, meeting a large number of new people, classmates and teachers become unusual for a 7-year-old child. The psychology of the crisis of this time for children’s consciousness is determined by the child’s first manifestations of his own “I”.
  • Stage 5 – crisis of 13 years or puberty crisis. The psychology of adolescence presupposes the beginning of the child’s personal development, the formation of his psycho-emotional development. This period is accompanied by rapid changes not only morally, but also physically. Therefore, this age is otherwise called transitional.
  • Stage 6 – youth crisis. Occurs in a teenager when he reaches 17 years of age, when he seems to be no longer a teenager, but not yet an adult. At this stage, the question arises about choosing one’s future, related to the end of general education and the need to enter a university and determine one’s profession. Often young people cannot cope with their desires and their preferences, it is difficult for them to understand what they want from life, who they dream of becoming, which is why a turning point of crisis arises.
  • Stage 7 – 30-year crisis. In the psychology of age, a special place is occupied by the period of maturity, which is marked by summing up the first life results. While it is welcomed by men, women want to delay the moment of turning thirty as far as possible.
  • Stage 8 – crisis of 40 years. This period of life is endured by women even more painfully than the previous one. They begin to feel not as beautiful as before, so they are often depressed. But not only ladies experience this stage with difficulty. For men, turning 40 is the first signal in the gradual fading of former strength in all physiological respects, but physical strength and health are almost the main dignity of every man.
  • Stage 9 - crisis of age over 50. At a time when a fifty-year-old person must take stock of the work done in life and dreams realized, he, unfortunately, has to realize the fact that most half of his life has already been lived, that those happy moments cannot be returned , which made him so happy before that he couldn’t become younger and healthier, that he wouldn’t be able to do everything that could have been done in his youth.

The psychology of life crises over the years, using the example of people of different age categories, reveals the characteristics and forms of manifestation of emotional instability and restructuring of a person against the background of age-related changes in his body.

How does this happen in men?

Crisis moments manifest themselves differently in people of different genders, age groups, and social strata of the population. For example, the psychology of an age-related crisis in children differs significantly from that of adults, and the ways in which men and women cope with turning points in life also differ. When is the most common turning point in a man's life? What is it justified by?

A crisis in a man’s psychology often occurs with the onset of his fortieth birthday. The forties are “fatal” - this is how a man interprets the period when he comes to the realization that he is no longer that young and lively handsome man, full of health and strength. The fact is that a man is essentially a breadwinner. By the age of forty, he takes stock of his half-lived life and assesses the current situation. If by this time he has reached the pinnacle of his career, is successfully working, is financially secure and able to support his family, he is happy. But a man constantly needs emotional nourishment. He wants to be admired, thanked for his work, told what a “well done” he is. A common problem that arises in men closer to forty is the search for a “spectator”. After all, his wife, who has long been accustomed to his professional achievements and has lived with him for twenty years, takes his earnings for granted and does not consider it something special. And a man craves to be appreciated, he requires constant attention. The fact is that a representative of the stronger half should feel powerful and omnipotent, but his wife no longer provides him with this feeling.

That is why so often men after forty begin to look for young beauties who admire their position in society, their achievements, their stateliness.

In addition to feelings of moral and emotional dissatisfaction, signs of rectal dysfunction give their first “bells”. A man's libido is his strength, his self-confidence, his pride in himself. And then suddenly, seemingly for no apparent reason, the first signals of the body’s age-related resistance begin to appear. At the same time, the man becomes irritable, he loses faith in himself, constantly thinks about it and begins to think negatively. It is then that a form of age crisis manifests itself in representatives of the stronger sex.

The psychology of many men is designed in such a way that his “dignity” is the main proof that he is really a man. When for some reason it stops working as before, it seems to him that life is over, that everything is very bad, that his wife, his co-workers at work, the whole world are to blame for this. According to statistics, it is this age category that accounts for the largest number of divorce proceedings, because “alpha males” explain all their troubles by the inattention, coldness and indifference of their wives, they find any clues in order to create a scandal and accuse the woman of being where she is. I was wrong. Although the point here is solely in the man and in his crisis state of the “fatal” forties.

Theory and practice of psychology of crisis situations 3884

In the modern world, there are more and more problems caused by the adverse consequences of human activity. These are issues related not only to the ecology of the habitat, but also to the complication and aggravation of social conflicts at the level of the individual, family, team, state and interstate relations. The variety of social conflicts accompanied by violence and cruelty (local military conflicts, terrorism, criminal situations, etc.), severe natural disasters (natural disasters) and man-made disasters further aggravate human existence than it was in the last century.

These universal crisis factors in our country are combined with the specifics of its development. In the last two decades, the pace of life of Russians has accelerated significantly. Socio-economic disadvantage, a decrease in living standards, and the loss of habitual, stereotypical values ​​and attitudes by almost all segments of the population have caused a massive increase in tension, manifested in an increase in the level of general anxiety, an increase in such experiences as loneliness, uselessness, meaninglessness of existence, uncertainty, fear for the future and much more. In this regard, in medicine, psychology, and sociology, more and more researchers are capturing the problem field, designated as “crisis” (from the Greek crisis - decision, turning point, outcome). The essence of the concept of crisis is very accurately conveyed by the Chinese in two characters, one of which means “danger” and the other “opportunity”.

The problem of the crisis of individual life developed mainly within the framework of preventive psychiatry. As synonyms for the term “crisis” in psychological literature, the concepts of “critical period” (T. Shibutani), “turning point”, “transition” (G. Sheehy), “turning stage of life’s path” (S. L. Rubinstein), “ gap" (L. S. Vygotsky), "critical situation" (F. E. Vasilyuk).

The theory of crises was formed on the basis of the theory of evolution, the theory of achievement and growth of human motivation, the theory of adaptation in the modern refraction of the concepts of emergency and extreme situations. There is also an influence of psychoanalysis on the theory of crises.

The basic ones were studies of various reactions to life crises in minor psychiatry by L. Lindemann (1944), psychological and psychophysiological studies of stress, stages of development of distress by G. Selye (1956), the concept of eight life cycles and the corresponding psychosocial crises of E. Erikson (1959), concepts of three types of crises by V. V. Kozlov (1997).

There are at least two characteristic aspects of crisis theory. The first is that it concerns the individual, although some of its concepts are used in relation to the family, small and large groups. Secondly, a crisis is not only possible pathological consequences, but also an opportunity for personal growth and development. Thus, having absorbed previous theoretical views and practical research, crisis theory has formed a new psychological discipline - the psychology of crisis situations.

The relevance of developing the topic of personality crisis is dictated by the high probability of completion of the crisis by the most pronounced socio-psychological disadaptation of the individual, leading to desocialization, marginality, radicalism, fanaticism, totalitarianism, destructiveness, even suicide. However, if adaptive resources are available and timely assistance is received, a transition to a new, higher level of personality development and individualization is possible.

The essence of the nature of personality crises is characterized by the following features.

  1. A crisis is, first of all, a violation of the internal balance (mental, emotional, emotional) or homeostasis of a person, resulting from environmental influences.
  2. Any crisis is a turning point in personal development. Depending on which path (constructive or destructive) the individual begins to develop further, his entire future life will take shape.
  3. A crisis does not arise on its own; it is a consequence of the subjective ideational and sensory perception of various kinds of social, natural and economic influences or situations that violate habitual life patterns and create an obstacle, causing experiences or actions when a person is not able to resolve them on his own.

It should be emphasized that in the course of life, any person faces a crisis. At a minimum, these are age-related crises, crises of interpersonal relationships or family dramas. Among the events that can lead to a crisis, researchers identify such as the death of a loved one, serious illness, separation from parents, family, friends, change in appearance, change in social situation, starting a family, sudden changes in social status, etc. Theoretically, life events are qualified as leading to a crisis if they “create a potential or actual threat to the satisfaction of basic needs...” [6, p. 28] and at the same time they pose a problem to the individual, “from which he cannot escape and which he cannot solve using the methods of adaptation available in his experience” [ibid.].

Thus, we can talk about the inevitability of experiencing crises by any person as a necessary moment in life, the process of individualization, the socio-psychological process of development and formation of the individual and the group. In essence, a crisis is a crisis of life

, a critical moment and turning point in life's journey. As V.V. Kozlov notes, a crisis is always a moment of choice from several possible alternatives, a moment of choosing a regressive or progressive solution in further development [2, p. 10]. He defines a crisis as a natural (age and existential crisis) or artificial (anthropogenic, technogenic, sociogenic) obstacle on the path of life, which is impossible for an individual or group to overcome with the usual resources [ibid., p. 8].

If we already know the content of the concept of “crisis,” then the concept of “situation” requires disclosure.

Based on the analysis of the problem of personal-situational interaction, N. G. Osukhova proposes to give the following definition of a situation: a situation is a segment of the life path, a system of objective and subjective elements (external and internal conditions) that are combined in a person’s life at one time or another life [6, p. 9].

It has become generally accepted that a person’s behavior is determined not by an objectively existing situation, but by a subjectively experienced situation, such as it exists for him (H. Heckhausen). T. Shibutani determined that “a person’s behavior depends not so much on the objective as on the subjective aspect of the situation - on how the person himself defines this situation” [9, p. 166−167].

Summarizing the results of the analysis of the views of various authors on the connection between personality and situation, N. G. Osukhova [6, p. 17] draws conclusions:

  • human behavior in a life situation (including difficult ones) is the result of the interaction of external and internal conditions;
  • to characterize the process of a person going through difficult extreme situations and experiencing the crises that arise in connection with this means to determine what exactly happens between these two sides, “external” and “internal” conditions, to find the personal structures through which a person establishes and regulates this balance, and both in situations of everyday, everyday life, and in complex, problematic, difficult, and even extreme situations of your life.

In the normal cycle of life, a person constantly faces unpleasant situations in ordinary (everyday) business, educational, and family life. It was precisely this term (daily hissles - everyday troubles) that R. Lazarus introduced to refer to such situations back in the 1970s. This concept implicitly contains the idea of ​​​​the need to highlight the level of complexity of difficult situations.

The question of a difficult life situation for a person arises when changes in the environment external to a person disrupt the relative balance of external and internal conditions of life (adaptation to life) or threaten to disrupt his activities, relationships with significant people, and his usual way of life in in general or in one of the living spaces, thereby creating a potential or actual threat to existence and the satisfaction of basic life needs. N. G. Osukhova considers this characteristic of a difficult life situation to be basic [6, p. 29].

Restoring lost balance may require a person to engage in activity directed outward (considerable effort, energy expenditure), or serious changes in the inner world - transformation of oneself. Moreover, the result of all these efforts is unclear (a situation of uncertainty).

From a psychological point of view

, according to N.G. Osukhova [ibid.],
a difficult life situation
can be called a situation in which, as a result of external influences or internal changes, a person’s adaptation to life is disrupted, as a result of which he is unable to satisfy his basic life needs through models and methods of activity (behavior) developed in previous periods of life.
Not only is a person’s usual relationship with the world disrupted, but it becomes impossible to adapt to these changes without serious work in the external or internal world. All difficult life situations are characterized by a violation of the stability of the usual way of life
(in one or another space of existence) and
the emergence of the need for change.
N. G. Osukhova defines a critical situation as a situation of impossibility

, i.e. a situation in which the subject is faced with the impossibility of realizing the internal
of his life (motives, aspirations, values, etc.).

Both V.V. Kozlov and N.G. Osukhova, in our opinion, most accurately identified the essential characteristics of the psychology of crisis situations. In view of the ambiguous views of various researchers on the genesis and classification of crisis conditions, we propose to take as a basis a single criterion established by modern legislation.

The definition of the concept of “difficult life situation” is presented in the Federal Law “On the Fundamentals of Social Services for the Population”, adopted by the State Duma of the Russian Federation on December 10, 1995 No. 195 (Article 3). In it, a difficult life situation is understood as a situation that objectively disrupts the life of a citizen (disability, inability to self-care due to old age, illness, orphanhood, neglect, poverty, unemployment, lack of a specific place of residence, conflicts and abuse in the family, loneliness, etc.) . p.), which he cannot overcome on his own. That is, the criterion is the impossibility of overcoming a life obstacle with familiar resources or, in other words, a violation of adaptation to life.

Of the characteristic features listed by both researchers and legislation, the key ones, in our opinion, are: violation of habitual life stereotypes, which create an obstacle (“impossibility”) and cause experiences or actions when a person is not able to resolve them on his own.

The main goal of the psychology of crisis situations is to study the reasons for the formation and development of changes in a person’s mental activity, taking into account his personal characteristics under the influence of subjectively threatening or total external environmental influences, with the subsequent implementation of the practical needs of the individual or social (professional) groups of the population in short-term and accessible psychological ( psychocorrectional) assistance. At the same time, both subjectively significant and objective psychotraumatic external environmental influences not only determine the need for psychological help, but also often entail legal consequences. The main parameters that determine the main types of critical situations and their differences are the external and internal conditions of a person’s life, the type of his activity and the specificity of the vital necessity that is blocked and creates the “impossibility” of further life activity.

To correlate the content of crisis and stress, we present the stages of stress development described by G.I. Kositsky [2, p. 193].

  1. Initially, there is a stage of mobilization, accompanied by increased attention and activity. This is a normal, working stage. Loads, even frequent ones, occurring at this stage, lead to training the body, increasing its resistance to stress - a primary increase in tension, stimulating habitual ways of solving problems;
  2. The second stage of stress, or the “phase of sthenic negative emotion,” which is sthenic, active in nature: rage, anger, aggression. The body's resources are spent uneconomically. Repeated exercise leads to exhaustion;
  3. The phase of “asthenic negative emotion”. There comes a turn of negative emotions that are asthenic, passive, powerless, and decadent in nature. A person is overcome by melancholy, despair, and disbelief in the possibility of getting out of a difficult situation;
  4. The last stage is neurosis, breakdown. The person becomes demoralized and resigns himself to defeat. The negative consequences that stress leaves in the body occur: depression, the initial stages of psychosomatic illness.

The last three stages, in fact, represent the zone of crisis of the individual.

Some researchers [6, p. 36] there are two types of crisis situations

, differing in the degree of possibility they leave for the realization of the internal necessity of life.

Crisis of the first

kind can seriously hinder and complicate the implementation of life plans, but with it there is still the possibility of restoring the course of life interrupted by the crisis. This is a test from which a person can emerge having essentially preserved his life plan and confirmed his self-identity.

The situation of the second

kind of, the crisis itself makes the implementation of life’s plans impossible. The result of experiencing this impossibility is the metamorphosis of the personality, its rebirth, the adoption of a new life plan, new values, a new life strategy, a new self-image.

This division can be challenged, since the “crisis of the first kind” does not correspond to the leading features - there is no “impossibility” of resolving problems independently.

In modern crisis theory, the following basic concepts of crisis situations are distinguished [2, p. 9].

Personal crisis

− this is a psychological state of maximum disintegration (at the intrapsychic level) and maladaptation (at the socio-psychological level) of the individual, expressed in the loss of basic life guidelines (values, basic motivation, behavioral patterns), arising as a result of obstacles in the usual course of the subject’s life.

Crisis state

− this is a personal crisis prolonged over time.

Crisis personality

- a subject who, as a result of post-crisis negative disintegration, becomes a carrier of deviant or delinquent behavior, a neuropsychic or psychosomatic disorder as personality traits, a method of adaptation to the social environment.

Vulnerability level

– the ability to expect (or avoid) a disaster, limit its impact, the ability to cope with it, and also recover from its consequences [6, p. 71].

Situations leading to a certain crisis state are traditionally divided into:

  • to stressful events (traumas, disasters, wars, loss of loved ones, etc.), provoking various types of crisis reactions (acute reaction to stress up to reactive psychosis), delayed reaction to stress from two months to one year (post-traumatic stress disorder) and super delayed reaction to stress (shock trauma);
  • transition to the next age level (age crises);
  • transition to a new stage of personal transformation (existential crises).

A crisis is one of the inevitable and necessary moments of life, one of the driving forces of development, including the development of an individual, group, and society. Consequently, a crisis is a necessary part of the life of an individual and society, of humanity as a whole as an organism; a crisis is always a moment of choice from several possible alternatives, a moment of choosing a regressive or progressive solution in further development.

A crisis is always disintegration, but it offers two options - positive, when a person increases the level of his integrity, or negative, when he becomes a pain for himself and for society. The entire subsequent life of the individual depends on what choice is made.

For better understanding and detail, all personal crises can be divided into two main categories.

Internal crises

– age-related, life and existential (i.e. crises caused by the natural development of personality).

External crises

− external traumatic events act as stressors in them - extreme crisis situations that have a powerful negative consequence, life-threatening situations for oneself or significant loved ones. These situations affect the human psyche, causing traumatic stress, the psychological consequences of which are expressed in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which occurs as a protracted or delayed reaction to situations involving a serious threat to life and health. According to ICD-10, these crisis situations cause the following personality reactions:

  • acute reactions to stress, where the stress factor is a certain event in life that poses a direct threat to a person’s life (war, attack, disaster, rape, etc.). Acute reactions to stress include crisis conditions, acute crisis reaction, combat fatigue;
  • shock trauma - mental shock, a delayed painful reaction to shock trauma manifests itself several years later in the form of maladaptive behavior or psychosomatic illness;
  • post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a delayed or prolonged reaction to experiencing traumatic stress.

In foreign and domestic studies of PTSD, the main attention was paid to veterans of the Vietnam War (work of American psychologists), in Afghanistan and Chechnya (Russian psychologists). What happens to a person experiencing trauma? How can one carry out his psychological rehabilitation and social readaptation? These questions were central to the research.

Currently, PTSD is increasingly used in relation to the consequences of peacetime disasters, as data have been obtained indicating the clinical and pathogenetic unity of these conditions. The classification of the most common causes in peacetime involves the identification of the following psychotraumatic factors: natural (climatic, seismic), environmental and man-made disasters; fires; terrorist actions (they are systematic in Russia); sexual violence; presence at the violent death of others in the event of a robbery; accidents, including transport and industrial accidents; family dramas.

Of course, emphasis must be placed on the most numerous traumatic situations. Thus, according to the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations, in 2008, 2,154 emergencies occurred on the territory of the Russian Federation. Of these, 1966 emergencies were man-made in nature. At the same time, 4455 people died, 2176 were injured. Natural emergencies amounted to only 162 cases, 21 people died, 1249 were injured. In 2007, the figures were more serious. The number of victims, that is, those in need of medical and psychological assistance, amounted to 27,335 people. This is 27 thousand 335 human destinies!

The latest events at the end of 2009 (the terrorist attack on the Nevsky Express) and the beginning of 2010 - the earthquake in Haiti (over 170 thousand people died) confirm the multifactorial nature of the causes of crisis situations. The consequences of the total disaster in Haiti required the mobilization of forces to provide humanitarian assistance to the entire world community.

According to estimates by W. Pecora, director of the US Geological Survey, between three and five million people have died from earthquakes and volcanic eruptions over the last thousand years. The summary data on the strongest earthquakes in the world in the 20th century provides information on more than 340, including catastrophic ones, accompanied by large human casualties.

Researchers who have studied the frequency of mental disorders observed during earthquakes come to the conclusion that, at the time of exposure, acute reactive psychoses occur in 10-25% of the affected population. The number of people who are diagnosed with mental disorders at subsequent stages of development of the situation varies widely: from 3 to 35% of the affected population. Thus, it was revealed that within a year after the earthquake in Managua, the number of hospitalizations in psychiatric hospitals doubled; The incidence of neuroses has increased significantly (and significantly). Neurotic and psychosomatic disorders associated with the disaster have been observed in victims for a number of years.

The psychology of crisis situations occupies a special place in the organization of a system of medical and psychological support for the activities of law enforcement officers whose professional (official) activities are of an extreme nature. In addition to the potential vital threat arising as a result of an armed confrontation with antisocial elements, a fire confrontation with an armed criminal or group is characterized by such conditions as excessiveness (excessiveness, extreme unusualness) and the extent of external environmental influences, including the frequency or frequency of employees’ participation in them. An example is the performance of service and combat missions to ensure law and order and public safety in the North Caucasus region (NCR). At the same time, such a characteristic of the labor process is noted as a sudden change in life and professional stereotype (new conditions of life support), which in a certain part of people can cause a violation of psychological adaptation.

The qualitative component of the tension in the work (service) activities of employees reflects the load primarily on the central nervous system, sensory organs and emotional sphere of the employee. With excessive or prolonged psycho-emotional stress that exceeds the barrier of mental stability, the adaptive stress reaction becomes pathogenic, manifested in the disorganization of the psychosocial and psychobiological functions of the individual. The resulting states of mental maladjustment are manifested in decreased performance, increased fatigue, abnormal personal reactions, deviant forms of behavior (alcohol abuse, suicidal tendencies, aggressiveness, impulsiveness of actions, etc.), neuropsychic and psychosomatic (hypertension, coronary heart disease , gastric ulcer, bronchial asthma, skin diseases, etc.) disorders.

Of course, in addition to the specifics of their professional activities, police officers are also affected by general external environmental factors and social living conditions, which adversely affect the health indicators of Russian citizens. These include:

  • socio-economic factors (low material security, alcoholism, smoking, drug addiction, etc.);
  • low level of health education of the population and promotion of a healthy lifestyle, which leads to low commitment of the population to a healthy lifestyle;
  • poor financing of the system and a low regulatory and legal framework for healthcare, which results in a low level of material and technical base, and, consequently, low motivation of personnel for quality work, etc.

The combination of the characteristics of professional activity and general unfavorable conditions further complicates the task of protecting the mental health of police officers.

Constant psycho-emotional tension is a significant deforming factor in the professional and socio-psychological activities of employees.

Professional deformation (PD) is a change in the professional capabilities and personality of an employee in an asocial direction, arising as a result of negative features of the organization, content and conditions of professional activity. The extreme degree is professional degradation, when violation of the law, immorality, antisocial behavior or professional impotence makes further service impossible. Research has shown that PD before 5 years of service is unlikely; 6−10 years - average probability, 11−15 years high probability, over 15 years - inevitable.

Our studies have shown that the prevalence of psychogenic reactions and conditions have a clear correlation with the length of stay in the North Caucasus region [4].

Concluding the topic of patterns in the prevalence of mental disorders among employees, we should point out the direct correlation between the decrease in the success of the service and mental morbidity.

The analysis showed that in the group of employees with mental disorders the number of unsuccessful employees almost triples and the number of successful ones decreases. This indicates not only an unfavorable tendency for the generation of predominantly borderline mental disorders among employees, but also the ability of the service to change, to a certain extent, the general structure of the personality due to secondary acquired forms of behavior in connection with constant communication with offenders and work in extreme conditions. Therefore, during the service, the number of so-called accentuated personalities statistically significantly increases, i.e., a certain personal “sharpening” occurs, the protrusion of some personal traits at the expense of the suppression of others.

Mental and physical overload and extreme factors caused by the specifics of the professional activities of law enforcement officers determine the need for a new model for organizing medical and psychological preventive measures.

It seems to us that from the standpoint of rationally increasing the effectiveness of health protection measures, preventive psycho-hygienic and treatment and rehabilitation work, it is necessary to identify priority categories of people who, first of all and without fail, must undergo planned diagnostic and rehabilitation measures. The scope of examinations and the provision of medical and psychological care should be differentiated, i.e. determined depending on the category of those examined, the time allocated, the degree and severity of extreme exposures suffered, etc. Such a systematic approach will make it possible to rationally distribute and use material and financial costs, which is especially important in conditions of underfunding of departmental health care.

Taking into account modern views on the psychology of crisis situations, for the rational and targeted organization of preventive psychodiagnostic examinations and rehabilitation medical and psychological measures in the internal affairs department, the following priority categories of employees of internal affairs bodies can be identified.


is caused by stress factors specific to work activities, which are characterized by a high probability of anthropogenic – extreme impacts. It can be divided into three groups.


. Employees of special (riot police, special forces) and operational units. The professional and social stress factors and their possible consequences are constant stressors that create emotional tension in the majority of employees with a feeling of danger to life - professional activity of an extreme nature, causing a high risk of stress disorders and conditions, psychosomatic diseases and neurological disorders. mental disorders.


Employees who took part in counter-terrorism operations (armed conflicts) in the North Caucasus region - stressors of periodic action
in extreme conditions - episodes of super-strong psychotraumatic effects (death of friends, the sight of corpses, being ambushed or surrounded, sudden shelling, the use of military weapons, the first murder enemy, crossing minefields, etc.); unusual climatic and geographical conditions, lack of water and quality food, chronic fatigue, decreased tolerance to psychogenic stress.

A high risk of stress-related neuropsychiatric disorders and psychosomatic diseases is assumed.


Employees who took part in extreme situations (fire contacts) or in ensuring public order during the liquidation of the consequences of emergency situations are periodic stressors
with a high probability of developing stress-related disorders, psychosomatic diseases with the threat of auto- and hetero-aggression.


, caused by stress factors of living conditions - difficult life situations, which can also be divided into three groups.


. Employees with pronounced social problems: lack of normal living conditions, loneliness, large families, low income are constant stressors. Chronic absence of normal living conditions, leading to the formation of a neurotic type of reaction (neurotic reactions and states), personality disorders with the threat of auto- and hetero-aggression.


Employees who are in a difficult life situation (death of loved ones or serious illness of loved ones, divorce, etc.) are at risk of developing neurotic reactions and conditions, personality disorders with the threat of auto- and hetero-aggression.


Employees going through a mid-life age crisis (40 years old) are at risk of developing neurotic reactions and conditions, personality disorders with the threat of auto- and hetero-aggression, due to dissatisfaction with the level of career growth, marital relationships, etc.


caused by stress factors of health problems or personal characteristics that complicate professional adaptation, which can be divided into two groups.


. Employees who are often and long-term ill are chronic psychophysical ill-being, leading to neurotic or personality disorders with the risk of auto-aggressive behavior.


. Employees exhibiting conflicting forms of behavior - conflicts associated with social behavior (intrapersonal, interpersonal, objective, asocial), including the threat of criminal liability, being under investigation; fear of shame, self-condemnation for an unseemly act. In these cases, there is a high probability of developing situational reactions in the form of a reaction of emotional imbalance; pessimistic situational reaction; negative balance reactions; demobilization reactions; opposition reactions; reactions of disorganization; neurotic reactions and conditions, personality disorders with the threat of heteroaggression (autoaggression).


caused by stress factors of mastering new types of activities or the volume of professional and service activities, also includes two groups.


Employees appointed to management positions of operational command staff are stress factors of adaptation stress: increased responsibility, a new scope of official powers and responsibilities. The risk of developing conflicting forms of social behavior, heteroaggression (autoaggression).


. Employees assigned, based on the results of professional selection, to the group of in-depth psychological attention - a history of risk factors that complicate professional adaptation.

When planning preventive examinations, it is necessary, in our opinion, to take into account the length of service of employees, the increase of which (see above) increases the likelihood of unstable reactions that turn into psychosomatic reactions, as well as professional deformation.

For each category, it is necessary to provide for the frequency of preventive examinations, taking into account the risk of possible health problems and the prevention of professional deformation.

Until now, when addressing issues of organizing medical and psychological care, we have to use the Torres strategy [8] - the “screening” (sifting) strategy, according to which, during diagnostic measures, deviations from normative behavior or stress reactions and conditions are identified and measures are taken to combat them. This approach may take place in conditions of examination of large groups of employees, limited time or insufficient level of resource and material and technical capabilities of medical institutions and psychological units. However, in employees who did not have “risk factors” as part of screening examinations, deviations in their health status may be detected.

For effective medical and psychological support for employees of internal affairs bodies and their socio-psychological rehabilitation, it is necessary:

  • organize a “Helpline” service - since the specifics of the internal affairs department cause employees to fear that if individual problems are disclosed, difficulties will arise with further service;
  • determine the optimal timing for business trips to “hot spots”, since the length of stay correlates with the prevalence of psychogenic disorders;
  • improve methods for diagnosing mental and functional disorders;
  • carry out routine examinations of personnel taking into account the above four categories;
  • take measures to increase the number of specialized preventive measures at the level of psychotherapy rooms, psychological relief, specialized rehabilitation units (centers), sanatoriums, departmental clinics and hospitals;
  • pay as much attention as possible to working with the families of employees who performed operational and official tasks in extreme conditions.

How does this happen in women?

If we talk about women, their crisis stage begins ten years earlier than that of men. At the age of 30-35, representatives of the fair half usually begin to think that half their lives have already been lived, and the goals and dreams that were thought up in their distant youth have not been realized. Mature beauties begin to rush around in their own doubts. During this period, many of them are characterized by a bad mood, loss of spirit, and a depressive state. All this together is generated by a midlife crisis. How does it manifest itself?

  • Loss of self-confidence. It is difficult for representatives of the weak half of humanity to be satisfied with themselves when they are tormented by any doubts. They creep up unnoticed, but grow with lightning speed and powerful force. Uncertainty in her irresistibility, in her strengths, in her need for her family drives a woman into a dead end and aggravates the crisis.
  • Dissatisfaction with appearance is one of the most terrible female phobias. The reason for this condition is the loss of youthful beauty and charm, the appearance of facial wrinkles and excess weight gain. At this age, many women especially suffer from an inferiority complex, often completely unreasonably.
  • Awareness of the beginning of the aging process - panic fear seizes women when they “exchange” their fourth decade of life. It seems to many of them that they are already completely unattractive to men, that they can no longer enjoy success among them. There is a constant comparison of oneself with the younger generation of young beauties. Thus, an analysis of one’s age-related changes is made and the state of depressive stagnation intensifies.
  • A feeling of uselessness - if a lady in her thirties is not yet married, the fear of eternal celibacy settles in her mind. She looks at the surrounding female colleagues, friends, acquaintances who have successfully married and have been happy wives for a long time, and she is overcome by a feeling of total despondency and emotional discomfort. She wants love, attention, affection, care, and (most importantly) a stamp in her passport.
  • Feeling of unfulfilled duty. Any female representative has a maternal instinct. This is inherent in nature, which does not choose who to give the happiness of becoming a mother and who not. Basically, all women dream of becoming mothers and raising children for their own joy. But today's modernity is so harsh that girls, being young, purposeful, and valuing themselves highly, often refuse men who want to connect their lives with them. First, they push away a potential husband, and then cry at the age of thirty that there is still no spouse who could give them the opportunity to become a happy mother. In fact, women experience this period very, very painfully. This is perhaps one of the peak moments of the crisis of a woman’s thirtieth birthday.

Symptoms of the turning point

You can notice the beginning of the crisis by the characteristic symptoms that began to appear suddenly:

  • causeless feeling of anxiety, uncertainty;
  • need for solitude;
  • difficulties in communication;
  • loss of life goals;
  • panic when thinking about the future;
  • desire for destructive behavior;
  • aggressiveness, conflict.

The appearance of one symptom does not mean the beginning of a turning point. But the combination of signs and the corresponding age is a reason to take a closer look at your condition.

Relationship crisis

The relationship between a man and a woman, their carnal connection, passionate feelings, emotions and love are an integral part of the life of every representative of humanity. Absolutely all people at a certain point in their lives want to love and be loved. As a result, love, sexual, and partnership relationships begin between young people of opposite sexes, which, oddly enough, can also undergo a crisis.

The psychology of relationships is based on many factors of spending time together. Often, not yet being husband and wife, young people undergo a crisis phase in their cohabitation or existence, which ends in separation. What is it?

A relationship crisis is a period in a couple’s life when one of the parties is no longer satisfied with the course of their existence together. This is the moment when partners no longer want to live as before, they want changes and redirection of the love affair in another, new and more pleasant direction. But often young people do not find consensus, misunderstand each other, get into trouble and come to the only right way out - separation. This is a relationship crisis. It is very difficult to overcome if young people have lost interest in each other. Therefore, it is easier to prevent the onset of a crisis phase in a relationship than to try to change something when both no longer need it.

Is it possible to overcome

How to cheer yourself up quickly when you feel bad - methods and tips

Most psychologists believe that a crisis is the most important prerequisite for personal change, the nature of which can be either positive: constructive, creative, integrative, or negative: destructive, destructive.

Important! Psychology says that you can overcome a crisis on your own, but it is better if your loved ones help. Parents can help their child. To do this, it is necessary to penetrate into the inner world of a teenager, find out what he is interested in, accept his musical preferences, clothing style, and worldview. Family and friends will help an adult facing a crisis.

Growing up crises

Family crisis

The psychology of relationships between an unmarried couple is different from that of married people. Although there is much in common between these two types of relationships, the nature of their psycho-emotional and mental state is different. The psychology of family crises is more multifaceted and wide-ranging than that of young people who are not officially registered, since they have many more responsibilities and responsibilities to each other. Married people have joint property, joint children, and are bound by law and official marriage. Therefore, it is morally and financially much more difficult for them to survive the crisis of family life.

Family psychology provides many factors that provoke turning points in the lives of spouses. How does the intensity of marital passions manifest itself?

  • Reducing the level of sexual activity and physical attraction to each other.
  • Loss of desire to like each other.
  • The emergence of quarrels over raising children.
  • Differences of opinion, loss of common views, interests, values.
  • Misunderstanding of each other's feelings.
  • Mutual irritability from actions or conversations in the family circle.
  • Manifestations of selfishness.
  • Loss of the need to share your joys and successes with your legitimate other half.
  • The wife's relationship with her husband's mother.
  • The husband's relationship with his wife's mother.
  • The wife's dissatisfaction with the fact that (in her opinion) her husband cannot achieve anything in life.
  • The husband's dissatisfaction with the fact that his wife is always busy with business, does not find time to pay attention to him, does not take care of herself (or does it too zealously, while spending the lion's share of the family budget).

Often, turning points manifest themselves in the form of crises in family life over the years. Modern psychology counts the period of possible downturns in relationships, starting from two to three months after the wedding day and ending with the twenty-fifth anniversary of marriage. The main boundary dates are six months, a year, the date of birth of the first child, the fifth anniversary, and the decade of marriage. These are unique stages of restructuring and psychological reorientation, reassessment of the values ​​of one or each spouse. Plus, the previously described age-related turning points separately for men and women also help to differentiate family crises in a married couple by year.

Psychology of the financial crisis and its impact on humans

Another type is the moment of financial insolvency. Probably every representative of modern society has at least once been in a situation where he was laid off or quit his job, when he became financially dependent on his parents or spouse. Moments of lack of money often become the reason for the development of a crisis state in any representative of society in the early or late stages of his life. They are just as difficult to deal with as age-related or family crises. But it is worth paying attention to the fact that all this is fixable, that any negative situation can be overcome in order to prevent the harmful consequences of the effects of crisis oppression.

How to survive crisis periods in life

Any crisis is stress for a person, which can cause deterioration in well-being and performance. To prevent this from happening, you must follow the rules that will help you survive crisis periods of personality development:

  • Find an incentive to get out of bed
    . Even during a crisis, every person is surrounded by many small and great joys. The main thing is to find them. This could be your child's laughter while playing, a morning walk with the dog, a cup of their favorite coffee, or a daily run. At first all this will seem small and unimportant to you, but as you perform these rituals, you will understand that it is from such joys that great happiness is built.
  • Try yoga or Pilates
    . During difficult moments in life, it is important to learn to relax as much as possible, turning off not only the body, but also the head. These practices will help you cope with this and will also keep your muscles toned.
  • Give yourself positive emotions
    . During times of stress, it is very useful to walk in parks, go to exhibitions, and go to the cinema to watch comedy films. Smile, laughter, joy - this is the base that will not allow negative thoughts to consume you. This also applies to children experiencing a crisis - give them more vivid emotions.
  • Praise yourself
    . Do this at every step: if you caught the minibus - great, if you managed to submit the report on time - this is also your merit. You must increase your self-esteem.
  • If you want to cry, cry
    . Holding back emotions is harmful at any age, and especially during a crisis. With tears and screams, the negativity accumulated inside comes out. A person is exhausted, cleansed and opens up to new achievements.
  • Don't withdraw into yourself
    . Remember, age-related crises are a natural process; you cannot hide from it or pass by; it is important to survive it. If you find it difficult, lonely and it seems that you cannot cope with all the thoughts that have fallen on your own, be sure to seek help from a psychologist.

What is a crisis period in a person’s life - look at the video:
Lonely people, those who have recently experienced the death of a loved one, are more susceptible to breakdowns against the backdrop of a crisis or patients with severe diagnoses. To prevent depression, their friends and relatives should help these people with their attention and participation.

What does a crisis mean for a person?

The onset of a turning point, developing in an undesirable direction, provokes the emergence of many negative factors and negative consequences for a person. It can be:

  • Moral oppression.
  • A state of melancholic dissonance.
  • Depression.
  • Stress.
  • Breakdown.
  • Development of alcoholism.

It is very important to be able to get out of problematic situations and prevent the development of the listed behavioral patterns. After all, each of them together can lead to very unpleasant consequences, even thoughts of suicide.

What is a turning point in life?

The course of the crisis can be strong, moderate or weak. If the turning point develops unfavorably, the individual faces negative consequences that significantly complicate life:

  • melancholy;
  • breakdown;
  • depression;
  • emergence of dependencies;
  • social maladjustment.

A person constantly feels dissatisfied: he is depressed, irritated for no apparent reason. Many are haunted by suicidal thoughts. In some cases, people cannot cope with a crisis without the help of a psychologist. That’s why it’s so important to pay attention to changes in your behavior and worldview.

How to deal with everyday crises

To overcome the overwhelming feeling of being controlled by the crisis, you need to be able to think constructively and act immediately. If you sit with your hands folded, it is difficult to achieve anything.

First, you need to find the cause of the problem. Searching and finding the source of all troubles will help you deal with them faster.

Secondly, you need to analyze the situation objectively, try to look at it from the outside. Perhaps, having seen the state of things in a different light, you will be able to discern your own mistakes that provoked a family crisis, or see the resolution of the situation in the predetermination of some specific way out of it.

Thirdly, you need to be loyal to yourself. People should accept nitpicking about their appearance and their age-related changes more easily. Aging is a natural process. It should be celebrated not with worries, but with attempts to live every moment of life with dignity and happiness. Then there will be no need to look for ways to overcome the crisis.

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