Chaos theory is one of the oldest theories of stress management, but its popularity has been declining in recent years.
In an article in Science, neuroscientist Paul Ehrlich outlines the case for a new way of understanding stress, which is the basis of his new book, The Power of Chaos.
Ehrles book focuses on the relationship between our bodies and our minds, and he says the two have been linked in many different ways.
He first explains that the body’s response to stress is influenced by the degree of activation in our minds.
This response is called “neurotransmitters.”
The more we are in a state of activation, the more we will react to the situation, the article states.
The more we activate our brains, the better we will understand what’s happening, Ehrlings claims.
But if our bodies aren’t responding to stress, then we aren’t getting the full benefit of what we are experiencing.
He argues that the brain is in constant flux, constantly reacting to whatever is happening around us.
When we are hyperactive, we will be able to “readjust our neural pathways to a new environment,” Ehrleks claims.
This is when the brain will feel “unwell,” which may trigger a bout of stress or even death.
It’s this feedback loop that Ehrleys book aims to explain in an article titled, “Chaos Theory.”
“If you have a situation that requires immediate action, your brain will try to adjust your behavior to the environment and avoid overreacting,” he explains.
“In other words, you can’t do something because it’s risky, or because you’re going to get hurt.
It has to be the opposite.
If you don’t respond to the stressors that are coming your way, your body won’t respond at all.”
Ehrlich describes a situation where he’s in a car and there is a lot of traffic.
When the driver asks to go to the toilet, Ehlers is reluctant to do so.
But he’s so anxious that he has no choice but to sit down.
He has to try to think of an alternative way to relieve himself.
He says the only way to make it work is to have the fear of going to the bathroom out of the way so that the fear doesn’t have to interfere with his ability to function.
But what if his brain isn’t responding?
Ehrly’s solution is to try a simple exercise: Sit down and let the fear go.
The fear of getting sick will not make him sit down, Ehlers claims.
And his brain will still respond to that fear, and his body will still be hyperactive.
This process will allow him to keep functioning at a high level.
And when he does get sick, he will be ready to go.
What does this theory say about the way we deal with stress?
Ehles points out that when a person is experiencing a stressful situation, they may react to it in a different way than someone who is in a neutral situation.
He cites studies that show people with more hyperactive minds tend to get more anxious and hypervigilant about what is happening.
In contrast, people with a calm mind tend to stay in their comfort zone and get less stressed.
This suggests that if our minds aren’t reacting to stress in a way that makes us feel better, then our bodies won’t be able respond to stress well.
So the question becomes, what can we do about it?
Ehlles advice is simple.
He urges us to not become hyperactive when we are stressed out.
And he says that when we relax and take some time to look at the situation and try to understand the situation in a new light, we’ll be able feel better.