LA 041: How to Bust Stress and Fears
You know that stress is bad for you. Yet you endure it every day. Modern life is stressful. Whether it's work, your boss, your spouse, your kids, your parents, driving or simply trying to fathom what to eat today. Your life is filled with stressors. So what can you do about it? Imagine you are visiting a theme park The best rides always have a long queue and you look with disdain at a group of ‘bullies’ who cut the line and push in front of you. Instantly your threat response fires up and you feel the urge to fight back, or perhaps give up and walk away from the spot you have been holding onto for the past hour. Most people say nothing externally, muttering to themselves about how unfair it is and what they would like to do. Yet meek and mild you keep your head down in case the ‘bullies’ turn on you. Hope – the positive expectation of future good Many people scoff at the notion of remaining optimistic in light of the “facts” presented daily in the news, at your workplace, in your bank balance. Suggesting that highly optimistic people (like me) are deluding themselves. Facts is facts right? Yes facts is facts. But, and this is where it gets really interesting… The amygdala is the emotional centre of your brain. It is well known that it responds ever so quickly to fear and anxiety. And there is another part of your brain involved: the Anterior Cingulate Cortex (ACC), which I have likened to a trigger-happy security guard constantly on the lookout for threats.