Have you ever wondered, how would it be to completely isolated? Well, today self-isolation can be considered as the word of the year after corona. Now how many of us were fed up with lockdown? Even though we had many kinds of stuff to fritter time away, yet we were waiting to go out and meet friends. However imagine yourself in a completely isolated room with no access to the current world, in the absence of timepieces and no gadgets. If you are still contemplating about it, a woman broke the world record for women for spending time in isolation.
In 1989, a young Italian interior designer named Stefania Follini was enlisted out of 20 candidates to help study the effects of isolation associated with space travel conducted by Pioneer Frontier Explorations and NASA.
In this experiment, she has to spend 130 days (4 months) alone in a twenty by twelve-foot plexiglass cell in a cave, which was 30 feet underground in the Lost Cave in New Mexico with the absence of timepieces ( any sign of day or night).
During her stay inside the acrylic glass room – her only companions were a guitar, computer, two friendly mice to which she named Giuseppe and Nicoletta, few frogs and grasshoppers. Remember humans are social animals. And it is nearly impossible for us to stay away from communication.
However, the psychological effects reported were she felt gloomy. The sleep cycle changed radically – she uses to stay wake for 20 – 25 hours straight. Her boredom guided her towards creativity from which she decorated the cave with cutouts made from cardboard.
The physical changes – her body was thrown out of thwack. She lost 7.7 kg in weight. Her menstrual cycle stopped. She partially lost her vitamin- D. She was reported to be thin and pale after the completion of the experiment.
It is also said that to bolster up her strength and flexibility, she engaged herself in judo.
Also, psychologists say that in complete isolation fewer than three days can lead to brain damage. Isolating oneself can lead to boredom. Boredom is an emotion which is a higher intensity of contempt. Usually, boredom leads to variety and stimulation which further generated neurogenesis (brain cell growth).
A study conducted at Harvard and Virginia Universities showed that the individuals chose physical pain over boredom.
PS: Now if that seems fascinating, why don’t you give a try which is safe? There is a recreational of sensory deprivation with soundproof, lightproof and floatation tanks that keep one buoyant with salt water that is the same temperature as your day. And this is called floatation therapy. In here you will be isolated and left out with your thoughts.