Owning your (rat) race

Bookshelves are filled with How to Guides on how to de-stress your life and most bookshops even have sections dedicated to stress management. Even my favourite magazine the Very Interesting, has published numerous articles about stress management and our ability to process information. In the world of Neuroscience, Neuroplasticity is the new buzz-word and it continually challenges our status quo.

Stress Management is a “real” topic, one that affects us all. The World Health Organisation calls it “the health epidemic of the 21st Century”. Recent research indicates that the major causes of stress is not only brought on by external factors such as 24-hour availability, a constant increase in expectation of our productivity and social pressures brought on by information technology. It shows that one of the biggest contributing factors to our high stress levels, are sence of a lack of control.

During my life I have frequently asked these questions; “How do I escape?” ,”How do I get out of this rat-race?”,” How did I get here?” and “Is this truely worth it?”. I have soon come to realise that these question are dangerous questions to be asked, it can either break you or push you to change. In most cases it broke me. I have stopped asking these questions, but the rabbit hole was still pulling me in. I then decided to change the question to myself and dared to asked; “Why do I allow the need for control to have such a strong pull on my life?”. Starting my question whith a “Why” and not a “How” forced me to think about what I was thinking about, which lead me to the question; “Can I change my believe system on how I perceive stress?” Yes, I can.

It all boils down to your attitude and how much you allowed external influences to clog your filters and change your perceptions. The way you look at a situation, is according to me one of the major contributing factors to the lack-of-control issue. It is not about what we have to learn, but what we have to unlearn. This is where the wonderful world of Neuroscience comes in; “Neuroplasticity is the brain’s ability to reorganise itself by forming new neural connections throughout life”. You can change the way you think and thus the way you perceive the world and thus your believe system.

 

 

 

 

 

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