A Closer look at common stress factors


Do you have a mind of your own? Of course you do. We all do in fact. A curious remnant of our evolutionary journey is that we have one brain, but two minds.

primitive mind and an intellectual mind.

On the whole, we feel in control and positive when we function in our intellectual mind. Not so much when we function from our primitive mind.

Our primitive mind was really useful, back in the day when the likelihood of being attacked by a wild animal was high. It was programmed to notice changes in our environment and translated threat into action. The primitive mind’s permanent state of alert released chemicals into the body, aiding its need to escape (flight) attack (fight) or stay still, waiting for danger to pass (freeze).

Do we need to respond to all events like this today? No.

Does our primitive mind still respond to certain events in this way? Yes.

That is why, when faced with change in our lives, we often experience it as being stressful. Weddings, moving house and getting divorced are commonly listed as three of life’s most stressful incidences. Unfortunately, our primitive mind still responds today in the same way it used to in the past. It tells our body there is a threat when it perceives things to be different from normal. It does not differentiate between a house burning down (genuinely life-threatening) arranging a wedding (life-changing, but hopefully not life-threatening) or having too much on our ‘to-do’ list. Heart rate goes up, in-take of breath becomes more rapid, and hormones such as adrenaline are released into your bloodstream. Whilst these responses were originally very useful because they helped you to survive, they are less useful for us today as we are not actually having to escape from life-threatening occurrences. Our bodies and minds however respond in a way that we have come to recognize today as panic and stress.

Sleep disturbance

Solution focused hypnotherapy is a safe and non-invasive approach that gives your brain the tools it needs to overcome panic and stress. Rather than focusing on the causes and problems, it focuses on solutions, and with the aid of the trance state facilitates you achieve what you want.

An important benefit of being able to actively combat some of these stress responses, is that your sleep will improve. Good sleep is essential for physical and mental health. It is a crucial part of wellbeing as this is the time your brain naturally resolves issues that have caused anxiety or stress throughout the day. Poor sleep, or sleep disturbance as it’s also known, means less opportunity for your brain to organize, sort and get rid of the stresses and strains of the day just past. This hugely important brain activity can only occur during the 20% of your sleep cycle known as REM. REM sleep is a very energetic state and this is why your brain limits it to 20%.  It has been estimated that more energy is expended during this period of sleep than if you were doing a maths exam. Hypnosis works because it mimics this state, giving your brain added time and opportunity to carry out the all-important functions of reducing anxiety and stress. Hypnosis works with your brain’s natural functioning to help you manage and cope with life’s challenging moments.

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