Trauma & The Biology of the Stress Response

biology of the stress response

When our nervous system detects a threat or we are faced with a distressing situation, our bodies naturally and instinctively react by activating our stress response. These threats trigger the body to engage defensively where it sets off a series of rapid well-orchestrated physiological and hormonal changes. They spring into action and allow us to respond quickly in an effort to ensure our survival. All of this happens instantaneously and outside of our conscious control. Read more

Codependency, People Pleasing And The Fawn Response

Fawn Response

By definition, fawning refers to the flattery or affection displayed to gain a favor or advantage. Fawning is the opposite of the fight response. Instead of aggressively attempting to get out of a dangerous situation, fawn types attempt to avoid or minimize confrontation. They do this through what is referred to as ‘people pleasing’, where they bend over backward trying to be nice. It is not done to be considerate to the other individual but as a means of protecting themselves from additional trauma. Read more

Dissociation & The Dissociative Experience: Are You Spaced Out?

Dissociation & The Dissociative Experience

Dissociation, for many people, is a natural reaction to stress or trauma and is most often tied to the freeze response. It is one way the mind works by disconnecting us from unbearable feelings and emotions that may overwhelm us during traumatic events. Dissociation can help us better deal with what might otherwise be too emotionally devastating to bear. Read more

Emotional Regulation & The Fight, Flight, Freeze, Fawn Stress Response

Fight, Flight, Freeze, Fawn Stress Response

Our body is naturally and automatically programmed to respond to frightening situations. Its goal is to minimize or avoid real or perceived danger. It is designed to protect us and survive physical, mental and emotional challenges. In the modern world, it can help us to perform better under pressure and better cope with demanding circumstances. Read more