This is the first in a series about the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS). The ANS stress response (or threat response) goes through sequential stages: Social Nervous System, Sympathetic Nervous System (Fight/Flight), Sympathetic with Parasympathetic (Freeze), and finally Parasympathetic Nervous System (Hypo/Collapse).
This article addresses the very common "Hyper" or Sympathetic Fight/Flight phase. We all experience Hyper states throughout our day, and many of us chronically. The energy of Hyper is UP, OUT and FAST. Our society runs on this Hyper energy. We need to get things done, faster. Rushing, mind racing, anxiety, and tension are typical of the Hyper state.
All of us living in these Hyper times need tools to bring us back into presence, back to ourselves, and back to regulation. To counter the Hyper tendency, we need practices to help us TAKE A PAUSE, SLOW DOWN, MOVE INWARDS into our bodies and DOWNWARDS towards the ground. The ground of being in our bodies is where we find the rest and revitalization we need to fully engage with life and to feel fully human.
For deeper support in finding regulation for your Hyper States, schedule a session.
This information has been adapted from "Window of Presence, Functional Range" by Anna Chitty with Ray Castellino, from the Colorado School of Energy Studies.
HYPER States (Fight-or-Flight)
What is Hyper?
The Hyper state is sympathetic arousal. It means the fight-or-flight response has been activated by a real or perceived threat. In most cases, we experienced the original danger long ago, but at the time we did not have the resources to fully complete our threat response. Therefore part of us remains reactive to current similar triggers. Cortisol and Adrenaline are the hormones running our system in a Hyper state. All the sympathetic “gas” is turned on in the body, with no parasympathetic “brakes”. Chronic hyper states may express as sleep issues, gut issues, addictions, compulsive and risk-taking behaviors and relationship problems.
What is it like to be in a Hyper state?
Tools for Regulating Hyper States:
Key concepts: SLOW, DOWN & IN, HERE & NOW, CONTAINMENT
Signs the Hyper State is returning to Regulation (The Window of Presence)