Stress can be a positive motivator for accomplishing tasks. In fact, a moderate amount of stress can be a key ingredient for boosting creativity motivating us to think “out of the box” in time-crunch situations. “Good stress” can be categorized as not too extreme, not too long-lasting, and set within a benevolent environment.
However, when we are too stressed or mobilized, it may not only impede our ability to accomplish the goals we set for ourselves but can impact day-to-day functions as well (eating, sleeping, speech, etc.).
It’s important to note that biological responses are below the conscious decision-making mind and occur involuntarily. Judging ourselves for being stressed can be like shouting at a broken leg to get better.
By creating a curious rather than critical response to increased stress we can move toward stress reduction and self-care without judgment.
Welcome to the vagus nerve! The vagus nerve oversees a vast array of crucial bodily functions, including:
Sensory: From the throat, heart, lungs, and abdomen.
Special sensory: Provides taste sensation behind the tongue.
Motor: Provides movement functions for the muscles in the neck responsible for swallowing and speech. Parasympathetic: Responsible for the digestive tract, respiration, and heart rate functioning.
It establishes one of the connections between the brain and the gastrointestinal tract and sends information about the state of the inner organs to the brain. While communication between body and brain flows both ways, 80% of the information transmitted by the vagus nerve flows in an upward direction, from the body to the brain.
Activities like yoga, tai chi, walking, running, singing, and slow, regular breathing are a way to tell your lower brain that it’s okay to relax.