The dentist appointment – a tale of stress and sweat.
Have you ever wonder what happens in our bodies when we faced stressful situations?
To describe this as simple as possible, I’ll use an example that anyone can relate too; the dentist appointment. I think statistics will back me up on this one, the majority of us fear or dislike going to the dentist. We postpone our appointment until it’s too late or the pain is unbearable.
The mind is so powerful that it can set the body in a state of stress by thinking about a negative event. That is because our subconscious mind can’t differentiate if the emotion is happening or just happened. That’s why we can experience emotions just by thought alone.
Stress is nothing but a natural reaction of the body, that helps us stay alert and focused on situations where we need to react quickly. The problem begins when mind and body don’t regain its natural internal balance also known as homeostasis.
So when we visualize ourselves laying on the dentist chair, our bodies will automatically react to this thought. Our breath becomes heavier and faster or we forget to breathe. Our muscles tenses, and we start sweating. Time passes slowly. We shrug and shiver at the idea of the drill and the invoice at the end of such torture can even give us a bellyache.
When we face a situation that we fear or makes us feel uncomfortable the body reacts to it, an alarm signal goes off, and the body prepares for the threat. It is the central nervous system that gives the order to release a set of stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol, to help us cope with the so-called danger.
Sadly, being constantly stressed is the new normal for us. Our body’s stress response is repeatedly triggered even though we are not facing a life-threatening situation. Enough studies out there, suggest that up to 90 per cent of all diseases are stress related. High levels of cortisol constantly pushed through our bloodstream, can weaken our immune system making us susceptible to illness.
We surely won’t have a 100% stress-free life, whilst meeting the demands of our daily lives. But we can learn to identify what triggers stress in our lives and develop new habits that will maintain us in a state of well being for long periods of time, keeping our bodies in balance will improve our health.
Developing new habits is not always easy, it requires the right amount of motivation and discipline to get it done. I believe that kinesiology can play an important roll in improving our daily performance and increasing our wellbeing, because it provides us with a set of self-help tools, that we can use any time a stressor comes up.
One of my favourite tools is called visualization. High-performance athletes have been using this amazing technic to help them achieve their goals. We’ve seen the power our thoughts can have, if we use our thoughts wisely, we can experience overall wellbeing. Visualizing the best outcome helps us see an alternative where there wasn’t one, we realize that we always have a choice.
Visualization is nothing more than play pretend, where you can actually choose the outcome you want to experience, how you want to react, what you want to say, or even what clothes to wear if that helps! It is important that we experience it as if it has already happened.
I want to invite you to give it a try, once you identify what triggers stress in your life, chose to see it differently. Trace an imaginary line from the middle of your eyebrows upwards to your hairline, halfway between the two place three fingers gently without any pressure, palms facing inward, and eyes closed. Take a couple of deep breaths.
Now think about the stressful situation until it loses its strength, then replace it with your own movie. You can also skip the first step and jump right to visualizing the best possible outcome. How do you want to feel in this situation? Calm, sharp, happy? What do you want to say and how? How do you want to react next time? Do it as long as you need to, notice how you felt before the exercise and how you feel after it.
As you can see, Kinesiology provides us with helpful tools like this one, so chose to feel great again. Book an appointment with me, I’ll guide through your process and give the tools that fit you best.
Ilustration: Ariadna Velázquez