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How the Brain Responds to a Crisis

Our brain uses our five senses of sight, smell, sound, taste and touch to evaluate what is going on around us. If the information being gathered is interpreted as we are safe, then the brain allows us to continue to do what we are doing.

If the brain determines things are not safe, then it overrides whatever we are doing to keep us safe. It does this as it has a role to protect us and keep us safe.

It chooses four ways to protect us:

  1. Fight – If we attack the threat before it attacks us, we might be able to weaken it and possibly keep it from attacking in the future.
  2. Flight – If we can quickly get far enough away from the threat, we might be able to escape and avoid interacting with it entirely.
  3. Freeze – If our body closes up, it becomes rigid, and won’t move, we might be able to keep the threat from noticing or becoming interested in us.
  4. Faint – If our mind/brain disconnects from our body, like by dissociating, or in some cases by fainting, we might be able to avoid feeling as much of the pain.

In the face of threat, there isn’t time to try every approach. So, your nervous system has to make these choices almost instantaneously. While you may not understand the choice, or agree with it afterward, it’s important to know that your body is taking care of you the best it knows how.

The threat can be a car wondering onto your side of the road or can be when you fight with your partner. A threat is whatever your brain decides you need to be protected from.

Which one does your brain when it needs to protect you?

About David Lawson

Finding the Light is a locally owned and operated counselling and life coaching business based in Bundaberg. We seek to empower our clients to find their way forward to a better life by using the approaches of counselling or coaching. If this blog article has raised more questions please contact us by email or call us on 0407 585 497 to arrange a time for us to discuss the article. Mention this blog and we will give you a FREE 30 minute session to discuss.

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