• Chelsey Hoffman

Healthy Tip: Amygdala Hijack

Updated: Jul 30, 2018

Don't let your amygdala hijack your brain! Our amygdala is the part of our brain responsible for our emotions and survival instincts. DId you know that when an event happens that triggers an intense emotional response your amygdala gets activated and starts the whole fight or flight response in your mind/body system. This then interferes with our ability to tap into our rational brain (neocortex) and make good decisions. A good rule of thumb to realize you've been amygdala hijacked is when you feel guilty for your response and/or reaction.

To avoid amygdala hijack know your triggers! Awareness of what sets us off allows us to better handle our response. I challenge you to take 3 minutes and jot down 3 triggers.

Here are some of mine as an example.

1. Not feeling heard 2. Interrupted or talked over 3. Clutter

I know clutter seems like a small thing to cause a large emotional response but once I became aware of an amygdala hijack I realized that when I am in a cluttered space (desk, kitchen) I have elevated stress, get short tempered, and am more vulnerable to overreacting. Knowing is power, try it and see!

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