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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Create Amygdala De Dah!

Move from Stress and Fear to High Cheer for the Holidays

The amygdala (a-mig-dah-la) is part of the brain in charge of feelings. Part of our survival system, the amygdala stores intense feelings, recalling them at times to guide our behavior. This can help us quickly respond to stressful and threatening situations with lightening speed.

With all the financial turmoil today and threats of terrorism, plus all the other stressors in our lives -- the amygdala is getting a real workout. In fact, it may be in overdrive, spewing out stimulating chemicals that can overtax the body/brain over time.

To balance this hyped up situation, mental and physical calming activities help quiet the amygdala. Exercise works especially well. Regular workouts help calm the amygdala and metabolize (burn up) excess stress.

The amygdala also stores intense positive feelings -- joy, excitement, wonderment. During this holiday season, let's find ways to add gleeful moments and create amygdala de dah!

Jeff

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