Hardwired

handsH (1)There is some debate as to whether or not one is hardwired to be anxious. According to dictionary.com, hardwired means “pertaining to or being an intrinsic and relatively unmodifiable behavior pattern.” To me, that almost sounds instinctive, something done without thinking. 

In all the research I did, one person asked a question on a site. She explained her psychiatrist told her that her anxiety would be hard to control because after 25 years it would be essentially “hardwired” in her brain. Most people who responded were angry with the doctor for even saying such a thing to her, giving her a sense of hopelessness. One person, however, didn’t hear the hopelessness, but the truth in the statement. It would be difficult, yes.  I learned that anxiety and panic bypass the pathways to our left brain (reasoning and rational thought) and trap us in right brain (memory through the five senses), thereby stimulating the brain stem (fight, flight or freeze). What I do (or try to do) in therapy is an attempt to create and strengthen a new circuit from right brain to left, to bridge my anxiety with rational thought and circumvent that direct route from right brain to brain stem. It sounds complicated, but it’s really simple!

But, the debate. Jeffrey Hull of the Huffington Post (Isn’t it always the Huffington Post causing a stink? 😉 ) contends that our brains are in fact adaptable and changeable. He believes that if we have the thought “I’m hardwired to be anxious,” it’s because some part of our life is getting ready to be renewed, and we should in fact embrace it.

What, though, do you say to the seven or eight year old anxious child? I wasn’t raised in an exactly normal environment, so I can probably point to reasons for my anxiety. But there are many children in loving homes who have anxiety. How would Mr. Hull explain this, I wonder? How are these children’s lives getting ready to be renewed?

I’m so sorry this is so late getting to you. There are good days, bad days, and worse. I had some sort of muscle spasm in my back. I took a muscle relaxant for it, which helped a bit, but made me very sleepy. Hope you had/have a wonderful day!

Peace out. 🙂

6 Comments

At birth I could see the different personalities in my children. I believe we are born with a tendency toward a disposition, and our environment either accentuates or mutes it. My oldest son was an anxiety natural. As we raised him, we tried to teach him to relax, accept what he can’t change, and let go of the need for perfection. I used to be an anxious child (I spent many nights as a kid worrying about my house burning down- I had heard about a house burning down, that was enough to get me uptight for years. Prayer keeps me balanced now, though some nights the crazy train of thoughts will get the best of me.

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    Elizabeth,
    I agree with you about us being born with different personalities. There are seven of us siblings, and when we were little, my mom used to let us take turns going to the grocery store with her once a week. She said that’s when our personalities were most apparent. My brother Greg was very outgoing and used to want to stop and talk to all the other moms, and he’s still very gregarious to this day. Me, on the other hand, I was very shy, almost fearful. I stayed close to Mom and didn’t venture far from the cart. I’m still fearful today, but working on it. It’s good that prayer keeps you balanced. I used to believe in the power of prayer, but I don’t anymore. That’s just me. 🙂

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Mia Southafricanwhitegirl Valenti April 10, 2015 at 6:30 am

When did your anxiety start?

Liked by 1 person

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