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Saturday, August 22, 2009

Calm Down

It took me a while to learn this: Never tell an agitated person to "c-a-l-m d-o-w-w-w-n-n..." They're likely to yell at you: "'Calm down'? What do you MEAN 'calm down'?! I AM CALM!!!"

But seriously: calm down.

Do you know what happens when you get upset?

Your body releases a hormone called adrenaline, in what is termed a "fight or flight response." It's very useful if you need to get your large muscles ready to fight someone, or runaway ("take flight").

But if what's got you worked up is your boss, or traffic, or your significant other, there's nowhere to run, and it's not nice to hit.

Do you know what excess adrenaline does to your body? It suppresses digestion and your immune system. Plain English: It exposes you to getting sick.

More directly, it can cause heart palpitations, and excessively rapid or irregular heartbeat. It can create anxiety, and cause headaches and high blood pressure.

In short, adrenaline ain't good for you. Unless you’re planning to run from a saber-toothed tiger.

So, seriously, calm down. Take a chill pill. Cool your jets. Take a deep breath. Go to your happy place. Think pleasant thoughts.

It's better for your body and your mind.

And you'll be happier.

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