'Fight or Flight' is a term used to describe the sympathetic nervous system. It is our instinctual response to danger and causes us to either flee or fight. Either way we become hyper-reactive to our surrounding environment and our adrenal glands secrete huge amounts of adrenaline to power our escape or our battle. We become on edge since we cannot sit still, because to do so would mean imminent death (from the point of view of our animalistic brain).
Imagine you are a deer or a gazelle and you spot a wolf or a cheetah out of the corner of your eye. You automatically tense up with fear and then almost simultaneously you would probably start sprinting away from danger.
This is how the sympathetic nervous system works also known as our 'fight or flight' response.
The problem is that many of us remain stuck in this 'fight or flight' response, unable to feel calm and peaceful and safe. These are the attributes of our para-sympathetic nervous system. This is our rest mode.
Many of the Treatment protocols that I use here at the Golden Wellness Center, is centered around "regulating this Fight-or-flight stress response, in order to relax the nervous system, slow down the mind, and help many parts of the body to function better as a result.
When your body remains stuck in the SYMPATHETIC BRANCH of the ANS, autonomic nervous system, you are constantly in "fight-or-flight" mode, which can lead to worry, anxiety, panic attacks and mood swings, as well as Insomnia, poor digestion, Hormonal imbalances, and Adrenal Burnout.
The Sympathetic branch of the nervous system is responsible for the production of STRESS hormones such as Cortisol, Adrenaline, and Aldosterone, which can lead to the over-consumption of nutrients such as Zinc, Calcium, Magnesium, B6 and other B vitamins and cause degeneration of vital tissues such as your INTESTINAL LINING , leading to LEAKY GUT SYNDROME, as well as poor Pancreatic enzyme production, and therefore poor digestion and gut motility, which means malabsorption of vital food nutrients and possibly constipation or IBS like symptoms, which can all be brought upon by overstimulation of the sympathetic branch of the ANS, "fight or flight" response.
The PARASYMPATHETIC branch of the autonomic nervous system is the part of our nervous system that helps us to relax, rest, and recuperate.
If we never allowed ourselves to relax, we would burn up our adrenal glands and stores of energy so that we were 'running on empty'.
While the sympathetic nervous system or 'fight or flight' is Yang , the para-sympathetic nervous system or 'rest and relaxation' is Yin.
A stressful work schedule and staying up late at night causes our adrenals to burn up our stores of energy, or Adrenal hormone precursors like Progesterone and Pregnenolone. All of this activity is Yang like Fire, and it burns up all of the Yin or Water energy.
In order to correct this imbalance, we will need to reduce our activities, both physical and mental, and slow down our breathing.
Too much Yang speeds things up, so we need to slow things down to nourish the Yin.
Think of the 'Tortoise and the Hare'.
Follow this link for step by step instructions on a meditation that helps to balance Yin and Yang energy:
Meditation for Balancing "Fight-or-flight"
If we focus our attention on the soles of our feet, we can help to nourish the Yin water energy in the Acupuncture point Kidney 1 (Yongquan). This helps to connect our Yang fire energy with our Yin water energy.
Fire energy tends to rise to the head causing headaches, anxiety, anger, too much thinking and worrying, insomnia, and excess lust for food, sex, alcohol, etc.
By redirecting the energy down into the soles of our feet, we can anchor this rising Yang fire energy into the Yin of our Kidney Meridian and into the ground of Mother Earth, the ultimate Yin energy, right under our feet.