Recharging Your AAA Batteries
by Annia Baron
You don’t need a psychologist to tell you that your nervous system is one of the most extraordinarily complex, sensitive, and intelligent structures in the Universe.
But you may appreciate hearing the hard-hitting truth: Yours, is most likely fried. These days we’re exposed to more stimulation, toxins, and noise pollution than ever before. Our adrenals are frazzled and sadly, our overworked fight-flight mode (run by the sympathetic nervous system; SNS) is so used to functioning above the required baseline that many of us have actually created a psychological addiction to it. Yes, you read correctly. We’re addicted to the stress experience. Many of us feel uncomfortable at the thought of being still and worry that if we let ourselves stop, we won’t cope with the influx of accumulated emotional load. Our parasympathetic nervous system (the rest and digest mode) is in desperate need of some TLC but in a world where the constant stream of demands, tasks to complete, and people to please feel endless, how do we shut down and recharge without the pang of guilt, failure, or fear of missing out? How do we reset without totally disconnecting?
Simple, recharge your AAA battery: Acceptance, Alignment and Appreciation.
Acceptance: Let’s be honest, when things don’t go our way, we have a tendency to act like a kid and pout. We get fired up and want to fight our way through. Our SNS increases cortisol and adrenalin, and we feel physically tense and anxious. But a simple tool we underuse is the psychological skill of acceptance. Acceptance is not about being passive, surrendering or giving up. In fact, it takes wisdom and maturity to choose to rise above what’s not in your control and shift your focus to what is. Acceptance is an active, bioneurological event that creates changes in how your brain wires itself, and with practice, influences how well you respond to future setbacks or disappointments. So, next time you find yourself caught up in frustration or anger, ask yourself the following question.
Recharge: “What’s in my control, what’s not? I choose to empower myself by focusing on . . ..”
Alignment: It’s inevitable that with so much pulling our attention, in many different directions, our inner compass can lose its ability to navigate effectively. Decision making becomes difficult and effort to do what we know will get us out of the storm seems much too cumbersome to try. Fatigue kicks in and procrastination follows. We end up feeling as though we’re drifting out to sea, relying on tides and currents to direct our next move instead of intentional choices that lead us back to shore. This is when identifying your personal values is advantageous. They act like the rudder of your ship, steering you back to where you know you want to be. Connecting to your values provides clarity, purpose and ignites momentum to take meaningful action. So when you’re feeling uncertain or confused, settle your nervous system with this reminder.
Recharge: “What top three values are most important to me at this point in my life. How can I create more of this today, next week or next month?”
Appreciation. It’s tempting to complain. It’s normal to blame. They’re easy and during low mood or elevated stress, our brain will veer towards easy. But by shifting attention towards something you appreciate, gratitude creates an entirely new set of neurochemical reactions, resulting in a cascade of endocrine responses that let you feel a new emotion – one that is of a higher frequency. And science proves this. Neural correlates of gratitude have been found to alter the reward centres of the brain, mimicking the reward of relief we feel when removing a stressor (Leknes et al, 2013). So, the next time you’re pulled towards apathy or comparison, apply the following.
Recharge: “Even though a lot is going on right now, in this moment, I am grateful for . . . “
Recharging your battery will cultivate optimal function of your magnificent nervous system and enhance your physical, emotional, and psychological wellbeing. Start today. Unfry yourself. Your mind, body and heart will thank you for it!
If you’d like more tools or curious about mindset coaching, visit www.remindyourself.com or contact Annia, Clinical Psychologist & Mindset Coach on 0402 448 278
Did you know?
Every cell in your body has a vibration that can be measured scientifically in Hertz (Hz). Each cell’s vibration is affected by your emotions because feelings emit a voltage. Some create low vibrations others have a higher frequency. Anger emits a lower vibrational frequency of 150Hz, fear at 100Hz and shame at 20Hz. Joy on the other hand emits at 540Hz and gratitude, a whopping 900Hz.