Q: I find that my adrenalin goes up any time I have to do any activity, even routine duties that are not stressful. This adrenalin increases especially if I am rushed or feeling any way pressured. I have tried telling myself I have time to do the task and do not need to rush but it is not helpful. I have put up index cards reminding myself to slow down but find in the midst of doing things they do not even register in my brain. I try to stay present and verbally state what I am doing but this has not seemed beneficial. Do you have any suggestions on how to deal with the adrenalin spikes as well as incremental training on doing activities without the adrenalin going up. I am not sure how to go about this as it occurs with any activity.
A: It sounds like there is an underlying pattern of anxiety that shows up whenever there are tasks to do. When there is a consistent pattern like this, it is often indicative of an underlying part or core beliefs that is centered around achieving and perfectionism. This is very common with many who have limbic system issues. Often these parts form early and they are so ingrained that our system responds automatically, without conscious awareness of the thoughts that drive the adrenalin response. The solution to this is to do parts work with a trained coach who can help you address that part and change the underlying beliefs.
In the mean time, I highly recommend daily meditations & mindfulness to help create a more solid foundation of regulation in your nervous system. Choose guided mediations to follow along, and if your mind wanders (which likely it will) keep bringing it back gently to focus on the meditation. Know that every time you catch your mind wandering and bring it back, you are strengthening your capacity to sustain focus and attention. This skill is very helpful when dealing with anxiety, as it helps us to stay present in the current moment. I also recommend that you intentionally slow down and breathe deeply while you are engaging in your tasks. The limbic system will not like it at first, but as you lengthen your exhale and focus on breathing all the air out of your lungs, it signals to your limbic system that you are not in danger. Intentionally going more slowly than usual helps to change the rushing response. Also, smiling while you do the activity sends a neurochemical signature to your brain that all is well (and there is nothing to be stressed about).
I am waiting to hear back from one of the Gupta program coaches who also works with DNRS clients as to whether she is accepting new clients, and if there are any other Gupta coaches that are available to DNRS people. All Gupta coaches are trained in parts work so they have the skillset to help with this specifically. Once I hear back I will pass that information along in the next blog.
Q: How does one identify core beliefs? Once they are identified, how do you go about changing them?
A: Again, the best way to do this is to work with a coach who is trained in this area. In the mean time, we can begin to identify some of our own underlying core beliefs through mindfulness and cultivating our curious observer. By tracking what triggers us and what the thoughts and emotions are that go with those triggers, we can start to recognize patterns or themes that are often indicative of underlying core beliefs or parts that are affecting our functioning.
Once we have awareness of those parts, we can begin to interact with them directly, asking them what they want to share with us, bringing curiosity and a loving presence to hear what they have to say. Once we understand the driving force behind them (often stemming from childhood patterns that we took on to have our needs met) we can start to guide those parts into doing things a little differently. All of this is much easier when we work with someone who can guide us through this process. Identifying and addressing those parts help us get unstuck and allow us to move forward in our recovery journey.
Until next time!
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Candy Widdifield is Registered Clinical Counsellor, Wellness Coach, and Registered Reiki Master Teacher in Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada. She has over a decade of experience coaching brain re-trainers and works with people all over the world, helping them to optimize their wellbeing and thrive in their lives. More information about Candy can be found at www.candywiddifield.com