Relationship between Cortisol and Negative Emotions

Did you know that the Hypothalamus is the chemical factory of our body? Whatever thoughts we think trigger emotions, and the Hypothalamus secretes and releases hormones to match that thought. If negative emotions dominate your days, guess what? Stress hormones (cortisol and others) are being released throughout your body. It takes 26 hours to clear the body from a cortisol rush. What if you are stressed the majority of the time? Your body is in a consistent stressful state.

Cortisol is a steroidal hormone produced by the adrenals. In stressful situations, cortisol increases blood sugar for energy, suppresses the immune system and ensures that consumed food is stored as fat around the stomach. This is a primal response to stress. Cortisol increases the appetite for sugar. Excess cortisol decreases collagen production, which is why stress leads to wrinkles. In a nutshell, Cortisol makes us insatiably hungry and gives us wrinkles – meaning stress makes us look old and fat!

When stressed, we are in survival mode, and our ability to creatively problem-solve and initiate contact is inconsistent at best.

Elevated emotions such as happiness, optimism, contentment, playfulness, curiosity, and fascination are key to increased confidence. Why? Because when we are experiencing elevated emotions, the good ole Hypothalamus is secreting and releasing oxytocin (happy hormones) into the brain. It seeps into the amygdala (survival and fear center of the brain) and it shuts the amygdala down. Our energy level increases, and we feel gratitude for being alive. This is proven by neuroscience, positive intelligence, positive psychology, cognitive psychology and performance science.

Question: What are five things that you are grateful for?