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Notes from yesterday’s talk at GVU: (See Zen and the Zodiac  Part 1) Nine times out of ten whatever has kinked our ‘feel good’ vibe has activated the fight or flight response.

You know how this goes . . . stress = adrenaline release.

When confronted with a stressful situation, the body responds in primitive ways. For thousands of years , this response has allowed us to fight enemies or flee danger. It’s a key to survival.

If we have a startling, scary or challenging situation, fear or anger rise and the body is automatically flooded with adrenaline. This increases the heart rate and blood pressure, so we can think faster, fight better and run harder. The blood sugar levels go up, creating more energy for sustained fight or flight. Blood is diverted away from the gut to supply the large muscles of the body, again assisting combat or retreat. Blood clotting accelerates, minimizing loss through wounds and internal hemorrhage.

Astrologically, the fight or flight mechanism links to Mars (healthy aggression) and Saturn (fear). Both planets rule the adrenal glands. They symbolise protection for primitive humankind, although what it does for modern Homo Sapiens is not always  beneficial. Often we experience stress/threat yet are unable to fight or run, leaving blood levels of adrenaline dangerously high.

These elevated hormone levels link to heart disease, memory loss, increased abdominal fat, gum disease, respiratory infection, diabetes, depression, anxiety, colds, flu, intestinal track disorders, skin rashes and some forms of cancer. Most significantly, prolonged stress hormones in the blood suppress the immune response alters the chemical messages in the brain, effecting mood and outlook. It becomes a vicious circle. Basically what once saved us can be a major block to our feel good.

Reducing Daily Stress

Where is the relief? Where is the liberation? There are six essential ways to do this. (Let me know if you can any anymore to this list!)

• Burn off the adrenaline! Find a feel good exercise!
• Remove the source of stress by reassessing plans and restructuring goals.
• Eliminate anything your ‘tolerate’. Get rid of it, or find a new way to see it.
• Learn to say no, delegate, and entrust others.
• Bolster mind/body/spirit to cope with stress. Exercise and meditate!
• Alter the way you think about what’s stressful in your life.

Tap into resources at Goodvibe blog, GVU and Sweet Relief Coaching.

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