Stress – does it show in your eyes?

stress predispositionDo some people have a “stress predisposition”?

by Judith Cobb, MH, CI, NCP, NNCP, CCII

Have you ever wondered why some people are more prone to stressing out than others? Does it hearken back to the ‘nurture or nature’ debate? I think it does.

We learn much of our behavior from our parents. I remember back to when my husband and I were newlyweds. We befriended another couple who had been living together and had just gotten engaged. One day we heard they had broken it off. We didn’t understand. My husband went to talk to the fellow to find out what had gone wrong and to offer support. The fellow said he’d gotten angry with his girlfriend, so he picked up the couch (yes, he was a strong, stocky fellow) and threw it at her. My husband asked why he would do such a thing – and the response was he’d seen his father do it. That husband of mine took a moment to explain to the fellow that throwing things at anyone, especially someone you say you love, is not an appropriate expression of anger. The fellow took the lesson to heart and was able to mend his relationship with his girlfriend. They were married a few weeks later.

Some people respond with complete composure. My brother works on a large family farm during harvest and calving. The hours are long, the weather doesn’t usually co-operate – and my brother used to be more than a bit of a hothead. The family who owns the farm is gentle, quiet, and good-natured. Things go wrong on farms. Machinery breaks down with inconvenient timing. Cows sometimes need help delivering calves at hideous times of the night. In this family, when inevitable horrendous things went wrong, whomever needed to resolve the issue would take a step back, think quietly, talk it over with someone and take action. Sometimes the solution was ‘nothing can be done until morning – let’s go into town to see a movie or go out for dinner’.  My brother learned a lot by spending so much time with this lovely farming family.

Some of how we respond is nature. Some of it relates back to how well our bodies use nutrients, and some of it goes back to behaviours that have been passed down in our DNA.

Here are just a few basic examples of markers in irides that suggest possible challenges with stress.

stress predisposition
Mydriatic pupil

When the pupil is enlarged in normal light, the body is in fight or flight mode. The adrenals are at the ready to make a person take aggressive action. This can be a genetically inherited predisposition or an acquired disposition.

 

 

 

 

stress predispositionContraction furrows

Concentric sections of rings that look like ripples in sand or rings on a dart board suggest the owner spends a lot of time in the sympathetic nervous system response mode. Being in this mode demands high amounts of B-vitamins, vitamin C, calcium, and magnesium. This is an inherited indicator.

There is so much more I could teach you about these markers and others that tie into how we feel and respond to stress. I hope you’ll join me on July 26 at 10 AM MDT or 6 PM MDT for a free webinar on this topic. Register here

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