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Your brain when you're anxious
The brain is very complex! But let’s simplify things a bit, ...
For example it might seem very silly to ‘freeze’ when there is a bear about, but it’s useful when faced with a predator who struggles to see prey that isn’t moving!
We live in a world that is full of stress. So even though you’re not being chased by a bear, stuff like homework or fighting with friends can trigger your fight/flight/freeze response.
In modern-day life with modern-day stress and anxiety, your response might might look like:
Panic (flight response)
Being irritable (fight response)
Not reacting at all (freeze response)
Getting into an argument (fight response)
Isolation or withdrawal (flight or freeze response)
Procrastination or avoidance (flight or freeze response)
Your body might have some of these symptoms if you are anxious or stressed:
Feeling very tired
Feeling short of breath
Rapid heartbeat or heart palpitations
Sick in the stomach or digestive issues
“No matter whether your response to a threat was fight, flight or freeze, once you feel safe, your brain and body start to calm down."
– Amanda, Kids Helpline Counsellor
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