Stress and the Fight or Flight Response

Woman dealing with stress

Stress gets a bad rap all the time, but it is not entirely a bad thing. Stress, for the most part, is a physical response to a perceived threat. The human body’s normal reaction to almost everything is self-preservation. When it feels threatened, that is when the fight or flight response takes over.

Fight response

When the fight response takes over, the body diverts blood to increase the strength of muscles, but it also limits “straight thinking.” You are likely to release your aggression in various ways, including talking down to a person. Although the fight response can save your life in some situations, it can also ruin your relationships in other instances.

Flight response

Sometimes, the more natural reaction is to flee. A possible sign of the flight response is when you would rather remove yourself from an undesirable situation at work or at home rather than defend yourself against a stimulus that causes stress or attacker. The problem is if it becomes a habit to run away from responsibility, and when you remove yourself from a situation so that it develops into something worse until you cannot avoid it anymore.

Dealing with stress

There are different ways to deal with stress, which, when ignored, may become chronic. For example, you can train yourself to react differently to a stressful situation. This is something you have to teach yourself before a stimulus that causes stress arrives.

You can also do something that quite literally eases your stress, such as going on vacation or getting a massage service in Heber. You can use the flight response now and then, but only so you can prepare a more appropriate response to a stressful situation.

There are also people who can help you manage stress, such as your family, or a professional. What matters is that you do something about chronic stress. It is unhealthy to live your life always looking over your shoulder or using every minute to dwell on what causes your stress.