I heard an interesting analogy recently when listening to Dr. Joe Dispenza’s lectures. He compares our daily stress with how wild animals react in survival mode.
When a Zebra in the wild is facing a survival choice with a predator at its heels, the Zebra goes into full survival alert and does one of 3 things: It runs, it fights, or hides. But if you think about it, the total stress experience for a zebra in that situation only lasts for a short while, then it is over. Soon the animal is back to eating grass, and has moved out of the stressful moment and is back into homeostasis.
When we experience stress, we react in a similar flight or fight mode, but unlike the zebra, we keep our stress turned on. Dr. Joe notes that we spend 70 percent of our waking life in a stress response of some kind – taking offense, anger, disappointment, sadness, frustration, replaying old hurts. We essentially put our bodies into stress so much that it overtakes the well-being feeling that we have ….so much so that is feels “like us”. We forget what it feels like to have no stress!
“We spend 70% of our waking life in stress”
Dr. Joe Dispenza
This constant state of being exposed to high-stress means stress chemicals are coursing through our bodies that can exhaust our delicate glands, breaking us down slowly and causing sickness over the long term.
How can we get to a place where we can react like the Zebra – only be in stress when the situation calls for it? As opposed to living in it day in and day out?
So now when I feel stressed out I call it “Going Zebra”. It helps remind me what is really happening and I try to not let the stress overtake all my moments. Adopting that thought process is funny and subtle. It’s so easy to slip back into old patterns and choices that induce stress because they feel like home – so familiar.
But the only way to a better place is to push through our uncomfortable moments that feel “unfamiliar” and intentionally choose to settle into a more peaceful thought process or way of being. It just feels better. Every time we do, no matter how small the shift is, we have a victory! We literally overcome ourselves. Going back to field grazing…
Have a great day! May you be blessed with Grace and Favor and whatever else you need this day.