For the past year, Brandon has been terrified of leaving his apartment. And so he’s settled into an extreme pandemic routine. He cooks all of his own meals, has yet to see his parents, and on the rare occasion he takes the trash out, still wears double masks, rubber gloves and safety goggles. Brandon has been fully vaccinated for weeks now but the very low risk of a breakthrough Covid case seems like a grave danger because a few years ago he suffered another incredibly rare viral infection. On this episode of How To!, we bring on economist Tim Harford, author of The Data Detective and host of the podcast Cautionary Tales, and clinical psychologist and Stanford professor Debra Kaysen to help Brandon work through his anxiety—from a statistical and an emotional perspective. Most of us feel varying levels of anxiety about getting back to “normal,” but Tim and Debra’s advice can help us reframe risk and find coping strategies to get back out there.
If you liked this episode, check out “How To Survive a Shark Attack.”
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Podcast production by Derek John, Rachael Allen, and Rosemary Belson.