The Alarm System

The amygdala is the reason we are afraid of things outside our control. It also controls the way we react to certain stimuli, or an event that causes an emotion, that we see as potentially threatening or dangerous. It is not logical what can set off these fight-flight-freeze reactions. It could be a tone of voice, a glance, a sound, a smell, random thought, what was not said, a memory, a song, anything really.

When we think that this Potential Threat is REAL, it can activate our Sympathetic Nervous System fight or flight or freeze responses. When these stress responses are triggered and we believe the THREAT is Real our adrenal glands release Cortisol into our Body.

“When you think of the amygdala, you should think of one word. Fear. When stress overwhelms us, it’s a sign that our amygdala, the brain’s trigger for fight-flight response—has hijacked it’s executive centers in the prefrontal cortex.”Dr. Richard Davidson, pioneer brain/mind researcher

The problem is that we take the warnings of the amygdala very “personally”.

We identify with this projection of FEAR, as our REALITY. We try to hide our Fear, and pretend “everything is fine”. When, in fact we are experiencing uncomfortable body sensations that makes us think, “what’s going on inside?”. To begin the process of Depersonalizing our Amygdala, it would help if we could increase our self-awareness to think, “It’s not really me, it’s just my amygdala doing it’s job”. The job of the Amygdala to look out for any possible THREATS to our Safety. It started out primarily focused on our threats to our PHYSICAL safety, but now it has become very concerned with our SOCIAL safety. Any perceived threat to our EGO, can set it off. Any similarity to a past hurt or trauma that might possibly be occurring again can set it off. So, we need to learn to De-Personlize our identification with the Alarm system going off, and see it as a Notification, like we get on our phone, with possible relevant information that we can choose to pay attention to, or ignore as a false alarm.

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