We have some auto responses that when triggered can create very negative effects within our minds by creating distorted feelings and emotions. Things that can grow into quite serious issues affecting our mental health and way we interact with others.

One such part of our brain known as the Amygdala – a Hard-Wired Automatic Response System that plays a big part in how we live in fear or not, but the good news is that we have a choice. I’ve included some fairly scientific information here, as it’s required to create an understanding process and our ability to resolve possible issues related to this. The brain can be re-trained

Located deep in the brain’s left and right temporal lobes are two almond-shaped amygdala – pronounced a-mig-da-la. They are typically no bigger than a couple cubic centimeters in adults and are found near the center of the brain. Sometimes referred to as ‘The Fear Centre’, but that description really over simplifies the extent of the effect it can have on us. Its main function is in processing emotions ‘Fear-Learning’, the most well-known is the ‘Fight-or-Flight’ response that I am sure you are well aware of. It acts like a switchboard, directing sensory inputs to one or more parts of the brain at once to assess the level of threat/danger, send and transfer to other parts of the brain to create the appropriate responses once the situation has been assessed.

Functions associated with the amygdala include:

  • · Arousal
  • · Autonomic responses associated with fear
  • · Emotional responses
  • · Hormonal secretions
  • · Memory

To understand amygdala better we need to define emotion,

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(e.g., fear, anger, sadness) is an unconscious, automatic reaction to the stimuli including somatic (e.g. pulse acceleration, pupil dilatation, muscle activity) and cognitive changes (e.g., changes in our attention and memory).


on the other hand, is a conscious representation of those emotions, such as feeling scared. Emotions are the result of the activities of the subcortical structures (the amygdala, hippocampus, striatum, and trunk), and cerebral sensations.

I introduce you to this information to help with my presenting a theory that I developed after researching the brain and how we learn, develop, and behave.

There is an automatic fear response within us at or before birth via the amygdala.  Two examples are the startle reflex and recoil reflex.  A recoil response being evident when adults get close up to an infant who responds with a wide-open mouth, likely related to fear of being eaten by a predator. So how does our knowledge of danger and threat develop from that point?

I’d like to suggest that it enters our conscious minds through being taught and by our observations of our environment (those instances important to our general safety and well-being) such as not putting your hand into a fire or stepping out onto a busy road. However, from that point onward we are subject to many things that I believe can trigger the amygdala into action, even if only in a mild form, but nevertheless triggered and thereby building on past experiences to develop stronger reactions to such events.

There are many ways in which we can be made to feel insecure, frightened, or endangered and it doesn’t take a blatant visual threat such as a knife or gun directed towards you to create it. Consider these as potential triggers and causing damage to a child or adult suffering from any of the following: being humiliated, bullied for being different in any way, being made fun of, made to feel inadequate or a failure, a victim of cyber bulling, and the list goes on!

Under attack

They are all attacks on our emotional state of mind, so why would they not trigger an automatic response. Every emotion that we have produces chemicals in our body that supports that state; if we feel happy we produce the chemicals to enhance that state. In the same way that if we feel fear the chemicals that support that emotion are created to support and enhance that feeling.

Understanding this, along with knowing that you are able to change not just your thinking but your biological state, too, the brain is re-trainable at any age, and we all have that ability!

Once again, this is another thing that I write about that you cannot simply wake up one day and have achieved or resolved, it requires many actions and investments on your part. I have already written about changing the way you think, how you perceive yourself, the ways to bring about change, and they all require your time, energy, and focus. Is there any good reason why you wouldn’t do any of this if your future life could be changed for the better?

Sources: Human-memory.net, Quantum University, Thoughtco.com

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Sophie Frenchie

I began this journey the day I opened my eyes for the very first time. I found this site at a time when I needed support more than any other point in my life. I had chosen to transition after years of internal turmoil, failing to be able understand or accept who and what I was. My life moved on at a pace that I found hard to deal with at times, but I managed. Living alone in the South West of France life was far from simple or easy then. Then, I discovered this oasis online, finding love, understanding and support unequalled to anything I have previously come across. Dare I suggest, my other family! So, why return after leaving about two years back? At the point, my life was changing dramaticaly, everything I had believed, understood and built my life around, up until that point, changed almost overnight. I am very settled in my life now living as a woman, with friends and a social life, all while being the happiest I have been. I am in the medical system here after overcoming many obstacles, now with the hope of surgery very soon to complete my transition. I have returned here in the hope that my experiences and knowledge can be of help to others in this community. When very young, I dreamed of being a girl, going to bed at night hoping I would awake as a girl. After realising that wasn't going to happen, I shut down that wish and lived a repressed existence from that day. It took a lifetime of unintentionally hurting myself and others, regretfully! Perhaps the one true regret of my life!

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Mika Malone
Active Member
1 year ago

I’m glad you posted this. Fear management is something I deal with in many aspects of my life. It happens so often that it was a big factor in me going out dressed just a month after I decided to start fully dressing. The ability to manage fear is absolutely a learned response. We can’t (and really shouldn’t) eliminate fear because it is a psychological mechanism to help us avoid dangerous situations. Preparation and careful analysis of any given risk have always been my means to overcome fear. My outcomes haven’t always been successful though. Those experiences always amplify the… Read more »

Kitty Van Curen' class='avatar avatar-64 photo' height='64' width='64' />
Kitty Van Curen
1 year ago

That’s interesting. And thank you for posting that article! For me, it’s been more of a struggle dealing with the ‘aftermath’ of events which have disrupted me psychologically [and there has been several!] and ‘re-occur’ in almost endless perpetual states ‘since’ these traumatic events. Without any strategies or knowledge of any psychological ‘tricks’ and lack of ‘coping mechanisms’ this has (…and still is…) become real problems for me to overcome. Those events have stuck with me and often my ‘brain’ goes back to those emotions triggered ‘by’ those events. It’s pretty rough, and without an escape, it’s like being stuck… Read more »

Kitty Van Curen' class='avatar avatar-64 photo' height='64' width='64' />
Kitty Van Curen
1 year ago

Thank you for that, Sophie. I will work on this nd apply this technique and read what other advice you have posted. ..Thank you for caring.

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