We’ve all walked into a room and felt the negative emotions and tension. Perhaps the inhabitants of the room just finished an argument. Or your spouse or partner came home and you felt the stress and anxiety as soon as they walked in the room. They didn’t have to say a word.
But a new study shows stress transmitted from others can actually change neurons in your brain in the same way as experiencing real stress yourself does. You may never have considered that stress and emotions could be contagious, but in fact, they are.
The research team studied the effects of stress in pairs of male or female mice. They separated the pairs and exposed one of them to stress before putting them back together. When they examined the specific brain cells that control stress response, both the stressed mouse and its partner showed exactly the same changes in their brains. I find this fascinating.
What is even more interesting is that when the stressed female mice spent time with an unstressed mouse, those effects were reduced almost by half. This did not hold true with the male mice, however. The take-away from this research was that stress and social interactions are intricately linked. My personal take-away was that we women probably help our husbands reduce their stress just by being calm and unstressed. You’re welcome!!
While the research was conducted on mice the researchers were confident that it could also hold true for us.
While being sensitive to each other’s emotions is part of what makes us human and children of God the study found evidence that some symptoms of stress can persist in the loved ones of people suffering from PTSD or other emotional stress disorders. It is another reason to investigate Christian EFT and deal with these negative emotions and memories so we are not only free ourselves but also so we don’t pass them on to our families and loves ones.
How do you deal with stress and negative emotions?
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Thank you Ivey!
Yes, this certainly happens in humans. But in our house, I’m usually the more high strung one. 😉 Our attitudes are contagious. I deal with stress and negative emotions (and even positive ones) proactively through daily meditation and journaling. It’s hard to set aside that amount of time every morning, but I can notice when I don’t do it. Thanks for more great information!
Well this is why God puts us together with our specific spouses! We balance and help each other. And as for the morning practice – I can say the same thing Holly. When I don’t have my quiet time first thing I see and feel the difference very clearly (and so do those around me!)
Yes, Jer has definitely been a huge blessing in my life. Challenging at times, but the good outweighs the bad. So grateful.
Oh yes Holly. I can definitely say that about my husband as well and I know they can say the same about us!
Ann, I’ve felt other’s stress and been helped by their calmness. That the stress can be scientifically measured in mice is amazing!
I agree on both counts Debbie and it’s nice that science is finally proving what we already have experienced and know is true.
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