Posted on / by Tamara Ogilvie / in Musings

It’s your amygdala. To freeze, fight, flee or stockpile loo roll?

The amygdala, an almond shaped mass in our brain, governs our most primal reactions – whether we freeze, fight, flee or stockpile loo roll in times of stress and danger AND in equal measure, in times of perceived threat or danger. It receives input from our senses and based on those inputs produces instant, sometimes irrational reactions.

Over time the amygdala enlarges if we’re in a state of constant or regular stress. As it enlarges the amygdala also makes more “noise”. We begin to weaken an important connection that normally exists with the prefrontal cortex – a part of the brain that functions to quieten down emotional (over)reactions. We effectively then get stuck thinking constantly about the very thing that is making us feel miserable.

On the back of an intense Australian summer of fires and floods, we’re perhaps primed to be more alarmed, concerned and confused about things. Our sense receptors for danger and threat are alert. Along comes a new virus that is also the subject of intense, panic-inducing media coverage, and we end up with a communal panic spiral.

Before we know it loo roll stockpiling is the norm.

Take a breath. Pause. Most certainly turn off the TV.

We shall continue to support our community through this latest conundrum by not contributing to the panic fuelled conversation.

Our environment is always as clean as it can possibly be. Our community knows well enough to stay home if unwell. We shall remind you to wipe down mats and blocks, and we’ve placed some hand sanitiser at check-in should you want it.

We shall do our best to ensure our collective common sense is not hijacked. We shall continue to provide our community with a space of quietude in which we can all reflect and process our lives in our own ways. Please treat our space as a place for your, and others, mental refuge.

Please contact me directly if you have anything to discuss.

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