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Is your battery dead?

Crazy, I am about to take a month off from my business and so is my husband. This brings up a whole series of “paper tigers” and I am doing it anyway. Why because everyone needs to recharge their batteries (so to speak).

If I break this down it all starts with the latest buzz phrase the “amygdala high jacking”. My mind is screaming; what about the lost revenue? What about the expense of the trip? How can you be away from your business, aren’t you serious about building a successful business? These are perceived threats or nicknamed “paper tigers”.

I am not an expert, nor are some who use this popular phrase. The little I do know is that the amygdala are responsible for the release of certain neurochemicals; one of which is the hormone cortisol, which is often used in conjunction with this phrase. Side note, the amygdala is a plural word as it represents two almond-shaped clusters of nuclei located deep and medially within the temporal lobes of the brain in humans.

The idea is when humans first evolved, they had real threats, like tigers, to fear. The brain learned to protect the species by releasing chemicals to trigger other parts of the brain. Here is the part few speak about, it is your hypothalamus that acts like a key master to your memory vault. The hypothalamus is responsible for how your memory is stored; at least one of its functions.

This is the part where fear overtakes pleasure. You recall pain or threat faster, as you are designed to learn quickly to run from the tiger that is chasing you. Your memory plays a major role in the high jacking. You learn quickly what is dangerous to you and what brings you satisfaction, safety, and connection (primary human needs).

Our ancestors had to learn to deal with threats in order to stay alive. If you didn’t learn to run from the tiger, you didn’t see another day. Do you think our ancestors faced tigers every day? Unlikely. They had long periods of rest to allow their brain to reset. This reset enabled them to learn skills, to meet human needs, which improved their overall quality of life over time.

Today, you don’t have tigers chasing you, you have “paper tigers”. Your brain is jumping to react to threats that your memory perceives as a danger to your survival. Do you face them every day? Likely. Today, you have a consistent level of stress and little time to reset. Practices like meditation, self-care, and exercise to help you to reset. The question, is it enough?

Laura DiTomasso, ACC