Wednesday, July 10, 2013

It's Not Fight or Flight, and It's Not Eat, Pray, Love

One of the things I learned in the body language book was that "fight or flight" is a myth. My theory is that it's actually a myth perpetrated by bullies to make themselves seem tougher by implying that there are two types of people - those who run, and those who fight.

The limbic system actually does something quite different. All animals, not just humans, go through a different sequence when confronted with a threat.

Freeze. Flight. Fight.

Fighting is actually the last, and least desirable option. Why? Because fighting gets you injured or killed.

Freezing does a few things. All mammals' primary "I'm going to eat you now" reaction is triggered by motion. We are visual creatures. Freezing is the most critical response, because it makes you invisible, hence, a less likely snack option. It also gives you time to prepare for phase two, if necessary - flight. In order to prepare for flight, you do all sorts of things. Your nostrils flare, because you need oxygen to run. Your pupils dilate to help you see more accurately, because there's nothing more embarrassing than running into a tree when a cheetah is chasing you! And last, and ONLY if the first two didn't work, do you fight.

So there you go. Something you've heard all your life is a lie!

Now on to Jackson Galaxy. When I went to see him speak, he joked about eat, pray, love. He said that if you want happy felines, you have to align yourself with the normal cat progression, which is:

Play. Eat. Love.

This is a very different cycle from canines.

Cats need to hunt before they eat. If they don't, then they can have play aggression, or, as most people know it, ankle attacking. If they get out of sync, their play (prey) occurs at inappropriate times. So he recommends a good play session before you feed them. After they eat, they're happy to lounge on your lap like the spoiled little beasties they are.  I've started paying attention to this and they are much happier and calmer in their downtime if I wear them out before I feed them with crazy mouse games.

Now, if you're a human, what you should do is:

Stamp. Stamp. Stamp.
That's what I do, anyway!

Today is a very special day - it's the 5th birthday of the Color Throwdown! I'm lucky enough to have been an Alumni and very honored to help them celebrate! I love their color combo for the birthday celebration!

I stamped an image from Greeting Card Kids (retired, but I will never let go) in Memento Rich Cocoa ink, stamped off once.  Then I colored it with just two Touch Twin Markers: YR29 and YR31. I used Afternoon Picnic paper on a Baked Brown Sugar card base. Easy sepia look!

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Please hop over to the Color Throwdown blog to wish them happy birthday - there's a GOOD chance you might win one of their awesome prizes.

And I challenge you to start paying attention to your response to stressful situations. I never, ever realized that freeze came first, but now I'm hyper-aware of it. You'll be amazed when you start to notice it.

And don't forget to play with your kittens. Or to stamp, stamp, stamp. :)



  1. Darling card, Lydia! Love your sepia look--perfect for that image! Thanks so much for playing along and helping us celebrate!

  2. What a gorgeous card! I love your image and background papers!

  3. Oh how positively SWEET!



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