How Do you Handle Criticism, Rejection, and Stress in General
The four physical/emotional
responses to stress are: fight, flight, freeze, and faint. You learned to react
from the ways you were treated when you were a child. These patterns are deeply
engrained. The following quiz can help you find the pattern of automatic
reactions that you may want to change. It will also help you appreciate the growth
you’ve made in breaking painful childhood cycles. To find your current pattern,
be curious, not critical, with yourself as you consider each statement below.
Any break in belonging or trust triggers an automatic and powerful Stress Response. Whenever we feel threatened--even in a misunderstanding with someone we love and trust--our brain chemistry goes on high alert, as if our life were threatened.You can't stop the response, but learned from childhood to model what to do with the impulses.
It is possible for the identical situation to evoke an immediate reaction of fight, flight, freeze, or faint in different people. Each response is designed to protect you from harm. You probably have experienced each of these responses at various times--sometimes coping with a single event. But everyone has a predominant style. This determines our individual Protective Style. Some get angry easily, others get anxious, many shut down, others leap for the ice cream, drugs/alcohol, or spending. The good news is that we can change, improve our relationships, and grow in healthier responses.
To find your
current style, recall a recent situation when you felt someone being angry or
rejecting. Whether or not you fought back, you were stressed out!
____ I get angry
so fast, I can’t control it. I feel like I want to break something.
____ I want to
just walk away. I think never want to see them again.
____ My mind is a blank. I’m afraid to speak, or I just echo what was
____ I don't hear what is being said when people are angry. I get dizzy, go to sleep..
Now I can admit when I'm angry, having learned how not to hurt other people. My present order of reaction is: 1 freeze; 2 flight; 3 fight; and I seldom escape to faint.
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