Brain Rule #8 – Stressed brains don’t learn the same way – John Medina, Brain Rules, 2008
There are two major types of stress – immediate stress and chronic stress. In circumstances of immediate stress the body releases adrenaline and cortisol; we face and handle the immediacy of the situation. In these crisis situations, we react to the situation, we step-up, and then the danger or immediacy ends. We have the opportunity to “crash” to relax and to recover.
The second type of stress is actually more dangerous to our health. The second type of stress deregulates a system built to deal with short term threats. This second type of stress creates scars in our blood vessels, damages cells in our brain, and cripples our ability to learn. Chronic stress impacts across society. On our children, chronic stress inhibits their ability to learn. For adults, chronic stress destroys culture and challenges relationships.
The sense of helplessness is often a significant contributing factor to chronic stress; having no control or ability to improve a situation.
We must breakdown walls, overcome barriers, and empower each individual to embrace hope. We make each other better . . . we listen, care, and communicate. We can’t, we won’t permit chronic stress to be part of our workplace. When you see it – stop it. When you feel it – talk about it.
Finally, if you find yourself feeling hopeless and helpless and things aren’t getting better, then make a change. Only you can control you – you aren’t trapped. There is always hope; there is always help.