gets through to the core of our being. Stress isn’t something that
merely grips us and, with work lets go. It alters us in the process.
We get sensitized to stress. This sensitization leads the brain to re-
circuit itself in reaction to stress. We understand that what we’re
coming across might be a normal, daily episode of tension, but the
mind is signaling the body to react unsuitably. We might not think
we’re getting worked up over running late for an engagement, but our
mind is treating it as if our life is on the line.
The revelation that tension itself changes our power to cope with
tension has produced yet another noteworthy finding: Sensitization to
stress might happen before we’re old enough to forestall it ourselves.
New studies advise that animals to humans could experience still
undetermined developmental periods during which exposure to
tension is more detrimental than in later years. What we now think is
that stress happening when you’re young might permanently rewire
the minds’ circuitry, throwing the system awry and leaving it less able
to cope with normal, daily stress.
The fresh blueprint of how we react to stress likewise might explain
why individuals have different tolerances for tension. In the past
stress tolerance might have been chalked up to mental fortitude.
with whether we’re strong-minded than with how much and what sort
of stress we come across in the past.
From this evidence investigators have reasoned that the stress
reaction is “wired” into the mind, that we inherit the same indigenous
reactions that jump-started hunter-gatherers to break away from a
saber-tooth tiger without having to give their actions thought. Only
this same life-or-death response is now called into play largely by
non-life-threatening conditions. Studies have determined the same
fight-or-flight circuits all working overtime in reaction to such
variegated stresses as extreme exercise, the death of a family
member, and nearing deadlines.
There’s no one-size-fits-all way to bring down stress. For instance,
“study upon study has demonstrated that simple relaxation doesn’t
work in many individuals”. Telling somebody who has been sensitized
to stress to simply relax is like telling an insomniac to simply nod off.
What you don’t need to do is resort to quick fixes that have no
stamina. Smoking, drinking alcohol, gorging on food; these are sure-
fire stress losers. They might give the impression that they’re relieving
stress, but they will not work over time and eventually you’ll be right