According to neuro-scientist and leading expert in the field of brain plasticity, Mark Waldman, “The brain has a preference to imbed negative memories because the organism needs to respond to future threats faster than our conscious minds can respond.” The more you imagine the possibility that something terrible may befall you or someone you know, the more your brain releases stress chemicals to prepare you for the “fight-or-flight” response. Then, when the brain understands there is no real threat there is confusion and it releases more stress neuro-chemicals. This can damage the brain.
New, scientific research indicates that there is a way to counteract the stress chemicals by using the 5:1 ratio. If you want to build optimism and resilience to stress the way to go is to focus on solution based goals as opposed to thinking negatively. You can’t do both at the same time. You need to consciously create more positive thoughts and feelings in a 5 to 1 ratio in order to overcome the brain’s propensity to turn negative experiences into memories. It is not difficult to train your brain to interrupt negativity and generate optimistic thoughts.
Apart from the 5:1 ratio, there are a couple of other suggestions that can help you de-fuse stress and anxiety. It is suggested that you slowly brush your arms which interestingly works on decreasing negative emotions.
Stretching your arms, neck and torso a couple of times an hour for 10 seconds releases dopamine to calm you.
Yawning lowers the hyper-activity in the frontal lobe’s functioning which puts a halt to intense concentration, worrying and procrastination.