There are also several more provocative questions to posed with our client:
- Do you ever get stressed about being stressed?
- What would happen if you became healthier? How would you be different? How might your relationships with other people be different?
- What would you have to give up in order to lead a healthier and less stress-filled life?
The Perfect Storm: Trauma Meets Stress
So, what happens when repeated trauma and stress become more the norm than the occasional happenstance? Frankly, it is a “perfect storm.” As we look specifically at the biological processes associated with stress and trauma, we find nothing but bad news. Under sustained conditions of stress (especially unwelcomed stress) we become increasingly sensitive to events that are potentially traumatizing. What used to be a source of mild stress now becomes highly stressful –even traumatizing. Our mental categorization of trauma and stress become part of our daily life. Thus, we end up in a “stress rut” We become more easily stressed and thus traumatized by once-minor intrusions. The world becomes increasingly unsafe for us—in fact as well as in our state of anticipation. Everything that challenges us is heightened.
It gets even more complex and bleak. In essence, our body remembers past stress and trauma. What does this mean? Basically, it means that our body along with our brain stores information (negative and positive). Our body is prepared for the repetition of events from earlier in our life and makes adjustments (involving such diverse functions of our body as our hormonal system, reproductive system and sleep cycles). This means that our body operates as an integrated system that demands “all hands on board” when a real, anticipated or imagined trauma occurs.Download Article 1K Club