What is a stressor - The Healthy Living Plan

What is a ‘stressor’ and how to eliminate it?

Mental imagery acts as a stressor.

Stressors trigger our stress responses. Recent medical research is highlighting the role of mental imagery in triggering emotions. You may recognize this as positive visualizations helping you to relax or achieve your goals, such as bringing to mind a beautiful beach scene or scoring a winning goal. You may also recognize intrusive mental imagery in the form of flashbacks can trigger fear, worry or anxiety. Yet in our day to day lives, mental imagery (which may operate outside of our awareness) also triggers stressful habits and patterns.

An example of mental imagery acting as a stressor

To provide context, think about a fear that many people share: the fear of public speaking. When you think about speaking in public, notice what thoughts, emotions and physical sensations arise. You may think “I’m not good enough to speak in public. I can’t engage the audience.” You may experience fear and anxiety. And this may show up as sweaty palms, flush face and a weight in your chest. This may happen every time you speak in public and even when you think about speaking in public. And so it is common to think that it is ‘speaking in public’ that is the stressor.

However, this can actually be triggered by an old memory, in the form of mental imagery. As a young student, you walked on the school stage to present a speech in a competition. You were feeling pretty good about about your speech but halfway through, you saw the judge falling asleep. Suddenly you panicked, thinking that you would receive a terrible mark. You felt the energy drain from your body and your face flushed and your palms started sweating.

Now every time you need to present at work, you panic that your presentation will not be good enough. You physically feel the same sensations of energy draining from your body and your face flushing. You think that you are reacting to ‘the presentation’. But rather you are reacting to the mental imagery or memory from your experience years ago, complete with the same emotions and physical sensations. Of note, you may have a vivid picture of this old memory or you may not be aware of it at all and yet it is triggering your stress response.

Stressors in everyday situations.

It’s common to think it’s not a big deal because it’s not often that you need to do public speaking. But what about everyday situations, such as your boss or coworker stressing you out. You may think it is person standing in front of you that is the stressor, when actually, they are simply triggering an old memory or mental image.

In essence, stressors are mental imagery that can be in the form of memories, beliefs and fantasies that get activated by events in your everyday life. When activated, they trigger your stress response, that you recognize as distressing thoughts, emotions and physical sensations. And if the mental imagery is repeatedly activated, you experience the same stressful reaction each and every time.

“Every time I have a report due, I panic and my heart races.”

“My workload is too demanding and yet I automatically say ‘yes’ when I am asked to take on a project.”

You can identify and resolve your stressors using Logosynthesis.

Mental imagery, which we can experience as memories, beliefs and fantasies, are energetic in nature. The stress responses, which can be recognized as thoughts, emotions and physical sensations, are also energetic in nature. The opportunity to resolve a stressor is to shift the energy bound in the mental imagery so that it no longer triggers the same stressful emotions each and every time.

Logosynthesis is a psychotherapeutic and coaching model that uses the energetic power and intention of specific words to shift the energy in distressing mental imagery. The Logosynthesis Basic Procedure offers a precise, repeatable technique to identify and resolve distressing mental imagery. This provides immediate and sustained relief from the presenting issue.

Using Logosynthesis routinely, you will feel a greater sense of ease and clarity to focus on what is important in your life. The Healthy Living Plan offers support to learn to use Logosynthesis to resolve your stressors, through 1-1 coaching, workshops and other resources.

Get started now to eliminate your stressors:

Check out these resources to get you started. You can also watch the guided video below to experience what can shift. Firstly, grab a glass of water and find a quiet, uninterrupted place. Allow at least 30 minutes so that you are not rushed. And then, simply follow my guidance on the video. Energy shifts can feel subtle or intense, so take some time to notice what shifts over the next few days and weeks. Enjoy!