Imagine you're at a meeting. You're sitting around a table... and things are getting INTENSE!
- Opinions are clashing.
- Voices are rising, and the ones that are not rising… are falling silent.
- Some people are clearly uncomfortable, doing their best to stifle their honest feelings… like they usually do.
- Others are “checking out” ~ looking for any excuse to leave… perhaps even dreaming, “If only the fire alarm would go off… then I could leave this room and get away from this!”
- Then there’s the person who is staring blankly, almost like they are not even in their body anymore…
In such a stressful situation, who do you become? Are you the fighter? Or, the one who wants to flee? Do you check out? Or do you feel you need to “agree with” the one in charge (even if you don’t actually agree)?
What’s I’m describing here is a group of people who have devolved into Primitive Brain Relating. The We-Space they share has become so activated and triggering that participants are reacting with Fight, Flight, Freeze, and maybe even a little bit of Fawning to authority.
I’ve reacted with all those. I’ve argued and defended. I’ve made excuses to leave. I’ve checked out and nodded “yeah, sure, whatever you say boss.” It sucks. It’s so so so STRESSFUL to be in shared primitive brain.
Now imagine that amidst all this, there is one person. They are respected for doing solid work as part of the team. They, too, feel the stresses building. It’s palpable to them in their body. Uncomfortable. Activating!
This person is not “immune” to stress. They feel it, just like you do.
And they are about to offer a profound gift to the We-Space.
As you look across the table at this person, you see them Pause. They softly close their eyes and take a breath. You see them relax as gravity pulls them into their chair – grounding and centering their energy – and with their second breath they rise into a stronger Presence.
All in less than 11 seconds.
They look back around the table, and then they look at you…. and you start to feel different.
A part of your brain, your heart field, and your gut all remember through the connection with them that: “It's okay. This is hard. We've got challenges. And it's okay. Grounded and Present is an option here… right NOW.”
What a gift they are offering to everyone.
It takes awareness and skill to bring stress relief into an intense situation like that!
Indeed… The immense value in practicing stress relief comes from its impact on our shared emotional world.
Let me say that again in another way.
Science shows that what stress relief does for you and me as individuals is…
- Increases resiliency
- Improves mental health while decreasing bouts of anger, anxiety, and frustration
- Offers greater access to your intuition and whole-body intelligence
- Improves memory, focus, and brain function
- Grants more energy in the daytime and restful sleep at night.
Those personal benefits are enough, aren’t they, to put some energy into stress relief? Right?!?
Here’s the kicker…
The IMMENSE value of stress relief comes from the positive impact it has on the emotional world we all share – the We-Space.
And here’s why…
Humans are wired as tribal, herd animals. Our sensors pick up and (by default) amplify what we sense from others. And what are most other people amplifying these days? STRESS! OVERWHELM! ANXIETY!
We work in connection with others. Even when working alone, or self-employed like I am, our work is with and for other people.
The stress and tension that we each have as an individual is impacted, profoundly, by how other people we are connected to are feeling.
But look around… There are people in every well-functioning group that are positive Influencers… and they may not be the person at the head of the table. They may not be the person dominating the conversation. The person who dominates the conversation isn't necessarily the most influential vibration.
You see, a single person that takes a pause…. a breath… and allows their body, mind, and energy to really feel grounded… radiates a signal of relief which positively influences others.
Now imagine that more of us decide to do this consciously… and not just for ourselves (even though it sure feels great to re-center). Imagine we start doing it for everyone around the table.
As soon as we do, the people we are most connected to – especially the sensitive people – will get the message: “Hey! It’s okay. This is not like fighting off a saber toothed tiger.”
Put yourself back around the table. As tensions mount, you pause, take a breath, and you come back with more Presence. Having noticed that, your neighbor does the same. Pause. Breath. Grounding. Presence.
Now, there are two people co-creating grounded Presence. Imagine both of you looking around, noticing where people are, and simply… being a grounded Presence.
Will this change the outcome? Perhaps. I’ve certainly seen that it can, even in corporate boardrooms. It will certainly change how the outcome feels to you. It also reinforces the message that what we do to relieve stress for ourselves in the moment CAN be shared… is shared.
If you’re a Responder who finds it easier to help others than to do something “just for yourself” – even if it’s stress relief (and, yeah, that's me)…. embrace your emotional orientation and…
Bring Stress Relief to the We-Space
- Feel into your body, acknowledge the feelings, and breathe.
- Ground yourself.
- Become more Present.
- Then consciously share the feeling with others in the We-Space.
Now you might be asking: But really, how could this make a difference?
Well, when you take this approach, the primitive brains in the room – that we all have – will pick up on the trend towards relief and calm presence. Primitive brains feel for the trend. If the trend is towards more threat and overwhelm, we’ll feel that and mirror it. If the trend is towards relief and fresh perspective, we’ll feel that and mirror that, too. Especially if we’re sensitive.
That means… The Emotional Trend is Our Friend.
You’re invited to try this. And see if you can find a buddy who can be your co-creator…. Someone you could say to, “Hey, when things go wild and crazy, how about we help each other pause and take a breath and ground ourselves and do our best to stay in that place and see if it helps?”
What you’ll notice is, while not everyone will pick up on it, it spreads.
Good ideas… and good energy… are worth spreading.
So that's the invitation: consider that the most potent value of stress relief isn't just for your individual body, mind, and spirit – your me-space – but for the We-Space… the space we share.
And it doesn't have to take more than 11 seconds to change the trend.
Until next time, I'm Rick at Thrivingnow. If this kind of approach to being together is intriguing to you… If you've always been aware of the we-space even when other people are not... I invite you to join the exploration at EmotionalFreedom.Love.
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