Stress is the result of making a decision.

Have you heard that stress is simply decision-making process your brain uses to evaluate data from your surroundings. To decide whether you are in danger or not.  Everyone knows about the “Stress Response” from school; The well-known “fight or flight” response. But this response is just one of several that can result from this decision-making process.

When you become aware and understand the surge of physical switches, your mind turns on or off to prepare your body to “fight or run.” You’ll realize the tremendous amount of control your subconscious mind has over your ability to adult. Many actions during stress result from a cascade of hormones dumped into your bloodstream by your subconscious mind.

Stress is your subconscious mind using a series of steps to make a decision.  Your mind is evaluating the data in your environment surrounding anything new or unusual to decide if that thing is a danger to you. You’ve experienced this decision-making process in your life many times.  Any changes in your day, activate this process. Simple things such as running out of milk, to horrible experiences such loss of a loved one.  This process starts to make choices for you in a fraction of a second. Usually, the end-decision is to decide if this change is an imminent danger to you. Do you need to run from this event or stand your ground?  This decision is the well-known “fight or flight” response. However, there are other reactions you can show from this decision-making process.  You see, if this event is not a danger to you, then your subconscious mind needs to decide a plan of action about this new thing in your environment.  In the old days, other options could have been “Can I eat it?” “Can I mate with it?” or “Can I ignore it?” As you know, in the old days, you were worried about predators eating you, and once the immediate danger passed. You could calm down and go back to a normal state of awareness.

There are still predators in the world in modern times; some still eat you, and others do worse things.  However, stress still sets off the same decision-making process.  But now, the changing events in your environment and life are different in that these changes are more frequent, almost continuous. This continual stream of stressful events doesn’t allow the time for you to calm down before the next crisis occurs. Therefore, being in a constant state of alert is an exhausting, resource-consuming decline in your state of wellbeing. As your subconscious mind starts the decision-making process, it also begins turning switches in your body on or off.  Your subconscious readies your body to fight or help you escape. A significant release of different hormones into your bloodstream occurs. These hormones reach the organs, muscles, and body systems to redistribute resources and turn off non-essential systems not needed during a stress response. Resources such as oxygen, glucose are sent to the outer areas of the body to prepare the limbs to go into action. Oxygen and glucose fuel the muscles’ cells, help you run like a gazelle or fight like a momma bear protecting her cubs. Hormones are sent to your chest and abdomen to get the lungs to start breathing deeply to supply more oxygen and turn off the digestive and reproductive systems.  Oxygen and glucose are also sent to your brain to keep you alert and focused on the cause of the stress response. Your entire being is focused and prepared to respond to the stress event. Your mind would set off the reaction in the old days once it decided which action was needed. If the stress event required no action, your subconscious would reverse all the processes, it just started, and your mind and body would reverse to normal.  However, in modern times, the stress events are almost constant.  Your subconscious mind is on alert, continuously keeping your body on alert as well.  However, the longer your subconscious stays in this alert stage, the more resources are diverted to your brain and limbs, the longer your lungs keep breathing deeply. The longer your digestive and reproductive system stays shut down. The longer your subconscious mind keeps producing the hormones to keep you in this alert stage. You will experience dysfunction in your body, which will result in the physical and emotional symptoms associated with Chronic Stress.  A helpful solution would be to break this cycle of stress.

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