Stress is the Enemy of Your Self Control

brain science breathe fight or flight parasympathetic self control stress stress mindset stress relief Apr 02, 2020

Late night PANTRY raiding…⁣

Just “a little bit more” wine…⁣

A few more pieces of chocolate won’t hurt!⁣

𝗛𝗮𝘃𝗲 𝘆𝗼𝘂 𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗿 𝗻𝗼𝘁𝗶𝗰𝗲𝗱 𝘁𝗵𝗮𝘁 𝘄𝗵𝗲𝗻 𝘆𝗼𝘂’𝗿𝗲 𝘀𝘁𝗿𝗲𝘀𝘀𝗲𝗱 𝗼𝘂𝘁 – 𝘆𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝘀𝗲𝗹𝗳 𝗰𝗼𝗻𝘁𝗿𝗼𝗹 𝘀𝗲𝗲𝗺𝘀 𝘁𝗼 𝗯𝗲 𝗼𝘂𝘁 𝘄𝗶𝘁𝗵 𝗶𝘁?⁣

You probably also notice you’re extra fatigued, too 🥱⁣

…and the end of the day seems to be the worst.⁣

Welcome to your human brain 👋 🧠 ⁣

Both STRESS and SELF CONTROL require lots of energy, and your brain can only handle so much.⁣

Throughout the day your self control resources get depleted, and stress will only exacerbate this.⁣

Not to mention, stress and self control literally initiate OPPOSITE changes in the brain & body.⁣

Self control requires your brain and body to SLOW DOWN and make deliberate decisions⁣

🧠 (tapping into your prefrontal cortex — the big ol lobe behind your forehead responsible for problem solving, decision making, and planning)⁣

Stress speeds everything up which was super helpful back in caveman/woman days when we literally need to “fight or flee” from threats 🐯… not so helpful when receiving a stressful email⁣

🧠 (this response inhibits your prefrontal cortex — making you more impulsive)⁣

Want to increase your self control and reduce your stress ASAP?⁣

Here’s a quick exercise ⤵️ breathe.⁣

4-6 breaths per minute, for 5 minutes (Bonus points if you can get outdoors to do this)⁣

🔎 Just 5 minutes of this breathing exercise can decrease blood pressure, heart rate, and breathing... AKA hello parasympathetic/pause and plan system (Ng et al., 2016)⁣