(playful mysterious music) – Now that we understand stress and how it can affect us and our lives, let’s learn more about what’s happening in our brain to cause it and what, if any,
ramifications we may experience as a result of long-term stress? Did you know that stress was
first discussed by Hans Selye, a medical student at Montreal
University in the 1920s? I definitely didn’t. And it was so fascinating to learn about. He noticed that all of his patients in the hospital were strained because of a nonspecific pressure
or quote unquote, stress. And he spent years doing
research on this hypothesis until he and his colleagues figured out that there was actually a specific recipe that creates stress and it’s NUTS! No, seriously, that’s the acronym. The recipe for stress is:
novelty, that’s the N, unpredictability, that’s the U, threat to the ego, T, and sense of control, S. It’s NUTS. So what this really means is that in order for us to feel stressed, we have to encounter something
we don’t fully understand or haven’t done before. And we aren’t sure how it
works or how it will turn out and we feel that the outcome
could harm our sense of self or our confidence. And we don’t really feel like we have complete
control over any of it. Even just by talking
that through with you, it’s no wonder stress is so common. I can think of many things in my life that meet this recipe for stress. I’m also interested to find out where our stress response comes from. Can it possibly be good for us? And do we all experience
stress in the very same way? Also, I’m curious if
stress is just a precursor to burnout or anxiety, or if it’s simply a part of them. I would also like to learn how we can heal from the effects of stress. And in order to answer
all of these questions, we are gonna go on another field trip. And this time, we are going to The Missing Peace Center for Anxiety where they treat all things
stress and anxiety-related. And just as a reminder, this video series is an educational project
sponsored by Google. You guys, I am so excited to be here. I’m excited to learn. We’re gonna learn all about stress and the brain and the body. Thank you so much for making time. Tell us where we are! – Ah! Thank you first of all for coming. – Of course! – You are at The Missing
Peace Center for Anxiety. I’m Laura Rhodes-Levin and I’m so excited to have you here! – And you created this wonderful place? – I did. This is my dream. – I can’t wait for you to show me around and to learn all the wonderful
things you’re doing here. – Yes! Come on along! – [Kati] Oh, wow! – So this is one of our
alpha stimulation rooms. – Oh my god. It’s like my childhood bedroom when you used to have all
those sticky glowing stars, but way better. – So alpha stim is for anxiety,
depression, and insomnia. It’s by prescription only but we just use them here with the client. And what they do is they put
a little thing on their ears. When you’re anxious or stressed out, your brain’s in beta. It’s a very fast wave.
– Okay. – When you watch TV, you’re in alpha which is why you’re like– – That’s highly stimulated.
– I want pizza ’cause you’re suggestible, right? – Yeah.
– You actually are suggestible. – [Kati] Wow, I never thought about that. – Right? – So interesting. – So the clients sit in here,
they put the alpha stim on, and we have them listen
to a guided meditation on whatever it is they’re working on. So if abuse, if they’re working
on getting out their voice, or in the case of high stress, about loving yourself and
making yourself a priority, so. – That’s really cool.
– They do that in here. – We have to see if I’m
in alpha or beta. (laughs) – Okay. You’re in beta, I assure you. And this is another
come-to-your-senses room. – Oh wow! Talk about a sandbox. (Laura giggles) This is so nice! This is like Hawaii. – It is! You smell the coconut, you listen to the waves, you’ve got the movie
rolling of the sunset, and they start to associate
work with less stress. We can also incorporate the things that make us feel good
into our work lives. If you look at Richard
Branson’s office somewhere, his chair is a hammock
and it’s out on a thing– – Super relaxed. – I don’t have a desk in my office ’cause I don’t like sitting in a desk. Every room you see, people
are in for about an hour. There’s a massage going on in here. It’s not just your regular massage therapy because we hold trauma in our body, we hold stresses in our
body, and we disconnect. So if we have a headache, if we’re hungry, we’re like, no, don’t have time, don’t have time, don’t have time. – Yeah, gotta keep doing everything. – Yeah! And she’ll press and she’ll be like, oh, this is kinda tight. What’s in there? And people just start
(sobs) I don’t know why I’m thinking of my uncle right now. You know what I mean? It’s powerful, powerful, so. – Powerful, yeah.
– Yeah. Another neuro room. – Okay. – This is the art studio. – How busy it is. – And you don’t have to be an artist. So this lovely lady,
this is a the bird house, and what you people see on the outside is what they see on the outside and then the inside represents your inside. – Oh! – So she’s got sparkles on the inside. The art therapist said,
“Why the black roof?” and she said, “‘Cause from now on, “if anybody looks down on
me, they go into a void.” – Oh, I love that!
– Right! – [Kati] That really gave me goosebumps. – I was just like no! – Oh.
– Uh! So I always have her. Keith just went out because
I just love this one. Neurofeedback is the real
science part of the center. I don’t know if you’re
familiar with neurofeedback. – I’m really not. I’d love to hear more about it. I’ve known of it happening
in clinics I worked at. – Okay.
– But I haven’t done it myself and I don’t understand it, really. – It’s so much easier to understand than it seems like it is. I call it The Men in Black ’cause it’s used by NASA,
it’s used by the Armed Forces. – Wow!
– It’s used by sports teams. ‘Cause when you’re in your head, you’re not gonna make the shot. So the way it started
is some neuroscientists 60 years ago thought, okay,
let me backtrack a little bit. – Okay.
– Your brain is amazing. Right now, if you have a cut on your leg, your leg is sending up signals
through your nerve endings to your brain, cut on
leg, and the brain goes, okay do this, and it sends
those signals back down. We’re having a conversation,
you’re not even aware of it. It’s sending signals to your
body for your circulation, for your digestion, for your heart. The brain’s amazing and it does it all through nerve endings. So all the messages go
up into the spinal cord, feed it to the brain,
messages get sent back down. The irony is the brain itself
doesn’t have nerve endings. When they do brain surgery,
the person’s awake. – They’re like if I poke here,
– I didn’t know that. – Does your legs still move? – Yeah. I’ve seen that on TV so yeah, I know. I’ve watched the live, you
can see surgeries and stuff. Interesting, okay.
– Right? – Okay, so brains don’t feel anything. – Brains don’t feel anything. They don’t have nerve endings, so how can they see and hear themselves? So these neuroscientists thought, what if the brain could
hear itself and see itself? Would it self-repair? Would it fix itself? So what we do is we take these electrodes. Now here, if you wanna have a seat. – Yeah!
– Please do. – Yeah, I’m very interested. – So you know in EKG where they put the stickers on your chest and the pen goes up and down? – Yeah. – Those stickers aren’t sending
anything into your chest. – No, it’s sending– – They’re just reading
electrical activity. So that’s what we’re doing with the brain. – Oh, okay. – And in the case of stress
and anxiety and trauma, we’re registering back to you the amygdala, the limbic system, the part of your brain
that’s totally overwhelmed. And what happens is that brain activity gets turned in to fractal
images of your brain. This is actually a fractal
image of my brain years ago. – [Kati] Oh, when you
were super stressed out! – Right! – Well, I don’t know, you told me. So I’m cheating.
– Yes, yes totally! Actually, it was a little bit after that. – Okay. – And you would sit. – It’s actually beautiful.
– With the electrodes on your head. I picked a good one. There’s uglier ones.
– I was like, it’s beautiful. – Thank you!
– Looks like a work of art, your brain. – They all are! So you would sit and you would watch fractal
images of your brain and your brain would be
looking in a mirror and going, oh my god, why am I acting
like I’m running from a lion? There’s no lions in here! Okay, I need to calm down. And it’s very cool for five minutes and then it’s just bad
spirograph meets Pink Floyd. – Oh, okay.
– You’re so bored. – Yeah. – So they’ve really
improved the technology now and now we just pop in a movie like. – Oh yeah.
– Bachelor? – Yeah, it’s something.
– You don’t really want a bachelor or anything.
– Exactly! So that gets put into the monitor. So your mind and your brain are different. So your mind gets bored with that but your mind doesn’t get bored watching a movie that you like. So your mind is watching the movie. Now, the movie is gonna look
the way it normally looks but it sort of shrinks
and does this fading. – Wow! Interesting.
– It’s that brain activity incorporated into the movie. – Wow! – So while you’re watching the movie, the brain’s going, oh my
god, my hairs are (mumbling). It fixes itself. – Wow!
– Okay? But it’s not a quick fix. So if you think of that
dis-regulated brain wave as grass standing straight up in the air, when you step on grass, it goes flat. But when you move your
foot, it slowly pops back up but if you keep walking
on it over and over, you create a new pathway and
that’s what we’re doing here. So with each session, we’re bringing that dis-regulation down, bringing it down, bringing it down, until you don’t need the
computer to do it anymore. Your brain is in a healthy state. And if you think about it,
the way are today socially, I know we’re all modern on
our hover boards and stuff, but we’re still primitive. So much so that we have to invent a gym because we don’t chase mammoth anymore. – No.
– We’re not climbing the steeps for lavender. – [Kati] Yeah, our lives aren’t as active. – Right? So we have to create false environments to keep our muscles in shape. Our brains right now with
social media, with work, with phones, with even driving at 60 miles an hour or
70 down the freeway, your brain is in a fight or flight state the whole entire time because when someone
comes in, you’re ready. So our brains, our limbic
systems get so overwhelmed. And just like we need a gym, we need something for our brain to help regulate and keep
our brains calm and in shape. – So when you get your feedback from those different nodes or whatever, then is it just like how many sessions? Is it a slow process? I have to sit down and we just
wait ’til we see a change? – No, its really self-report. – Oh, okay!
– People start to feel better. After the first session,
you feel a little tired, a little relaxed. Some people say they feel like
they’ve had a glass of wine. And then within an hour or
two, it kinda goes away. – [Kati] Okay. – But then that feeling stays with you for longer and longer. When I first got trained doing this, I was told about 20 sessions. I don’t know. I think it takes way more.
– Okay. – We’re looking at 60, 80
sessions because don’t forget, once the body gets relaxed,
the brain is great, it’ll fix whatever it wants to, not what we tell it to always. So now, you can work on peak performance. You can go to the gym to lose five pounds or you can bulk up. So you can get your brain
into a healthy state. I’ve had guys come in to
improve their golf game. – [Kati] Oh interesting, yeah! – So the longer you stay with it, the healthier your brain gets. And then there’s a point
where you really are done. – Okay. There’s something different
for everybody, I would presume. Just everything, yeah.
– Everybody. With kids, it’s much faster. – [Kati] Of course. – But then that’s where the
short-term tools come in. So for later on down the
line something happens, a flood, a rain, a divorce, something, now those short-term tools,
you can relax yourself. And some people come in for a tune up now. Give me sessions for a month
and I’ll be back on my. – Hmm, very interesting! – Yeah.
– That’s cool! – This is what started all of it. – [Kati] It’s a gym for your brain. – It really is, it is! I call the place a spa for your brain. – It is, it’s really cool though. I would assume that 20 sessions is kind of where you start to not be as asymptomatic as you were. – Absolutely. – And then it’s almost like if we start, let’s say I’m gonna start
running, heaven help me, I start and I run for a minute, I’m like, (panting) and then
I start running for three, and then I kinda start, it’s not as hard anymore.
– Exactly. – I get more used to it in
the same way that my brain would kinda get more used to
it to those notes, I feel– – And by 10 sessions, you’re definitely noticing
a substantial change. – Do people around you tend to notice if you have more joy, light in your face? – Yeah! – [Kati] They’re like, what’d you do? Something’s different! – Mm-hmm. And that happens with teenagers, especially teenage boys that are like, so how are you feeling? How are you doing? I don’t know, same. And the mom’s like, no, he’s much better.
– He’s so much better. – He’s much better. Right?
– Of course. What prompted you to start this? – It kind of evolved on its own. I started years ago in meditation and then I was teaching
meditation someplace and they said, “We want you
to learn neurofeedback.” Neurofeedback was mind-blowing, literally. – Yes, literally. – Right? (both laughs) And so I started becoming
a neurofeedback therapist and then people were saying, why aren’t you my real therapist? I’m like, I’m in my 40s, yeah, sure! And I went back to school. – Oh wow, yeah! Gathered those 3,000 hours! – Yeah.
– Bless your heart! – Right? And still doing the
neurofeedback practice. – Wow! – And school and. I feel like I’m a really good therapist but it takes more than flour
to make a cake, I was saying. I found that my clients need other things. They need to get in touch
with their sense of smell. They need to get in
touch with their bodies. When they’re working their art, they’re accessing a different
part of their brain. So as anxiety and PTSD and
trauma became my focus, the more I can help and the more I learn, the more I wanna offer to people. – Yeah, and it’s nice that
it’s in the same facility because I know personally in my practice, I refer everything out
or it’s like homework which will be great if I can be like, okay so next, we will put you
down here for this exercise, I want you to do this breathing class, and then I’d like you
to do this art class, kinda art therapy. It’d be nice to have it all so it’d be my colleagues
within the same suite versus me having to try
to find it for them online or you know what I mean? It’s just a much more laborious process when it’s not just out the door. – It is and a lot of the stuff we do here, I think people are reluctant about. Well, nobody’s reluctant
about the message but– – Of course!
– It’s art therapy, right? I don’t know, when you’re breeding them in and you’re saying this is your program, this is what you’re gonna be doing, no one with anxiety wants
to do a group therapy. – Oh, of course, not! No, the funniest, this is
a joke I laugh about myself is one of the first groups that tried to run with
a girlfriend of mine was social anxiety group for teenage girls and it didn’t go well and
we had three people show up out of 15’s parents who had RSVPd them and they slowly got more comfortable but I think they made it up to four total and it was helpful at the end, but it took ’em four or
five weeks just to warm up. – Oh and that’s what’s nice about having a group that’s been around, ’cause even when new people come into it and they have that like please launch me from
this chair right now. – I wanna disappear.
– Right. They get the assurance
from people who say, I know exactly how you feel and they bond so well that actually when we had to close for the fires. – Oh yeah! – My groups met outside of here. They were like– – Oh, cute!
– We got together because we just wanted to talk and we couldn’t come to the center. I’m like, great!
– That’s wonderful! – Yeah!
– Yeah, how cool! – So when you have it all
here, instead of referring, you’re just like, okay,
this is what you’re doing, you’ve trusted me, and then
they can see the benefit of it. – No, it’s wonderful. It’s a beautiful facility.
– Thank you. – So we’re here today to
talk about stress obviously. How would you define stress? – Okay. – I know it’s tricky but it’s okay, just put you on the spot. – It’s hard to take it. I won’t get stressed. – Okay, perfect! Perfect! (both laughing) – So just like we’re so familiar
with the spectrum term now, stress, I feel is on the anxiety spectrum. And when people come
in and they’re saying, there’s something wrong
with me, I’m really anxious. The first thing I tell them is what you think is wrong with you is actually what’s right with you. – Hmm! – We are supposed to have anxiety. It’s essential to our survival. So imagine you’re a little girl and you’re playing in the
meadow with your friends and you hear a rustle in the bush and you see a big, fuzzy
face and it eats your friend. (Kati laughs nervously) Now you just met a lion for the first time and that goes into your
brain and it stays there and it’s supposed to stay there so that the next time you see a big, fuzzy face in the bushes, you run! – Yeah, you’d get out of there. – And the more and more anxiety or scary things we experience, the more and more we become overwhelmed. And in today’s world with phones
and traffic and computers, our limbic systems are very much overtaxed and you’ve got survival of the fittest. I mean, we’re all the people
who’ve made it all this way. – That’s true! – So anxiety is already our specialty. – It’s from the past, it’s like through our lineage essentially. – Exactly!
– ‘Cause our people ran away from the lion. – That’s right! That’s my work here. We’re lion runners.
– I didn’t even think about it that way. (both laughing) It’s like generational trauma. – It really is. They’ve done studies
with holocaust victims. Their children have
higher levels of anxiety because we don’t just inherit hair color. We inherit emotion. And so stress is something
that’s really, really important but the balance and learning, I was saying earlier, the term self-care is the most overused term and
most underutilized subject. – Yeah, agreed. And like I said earlier too, people don’t really
talk about what that is or how to do it. And I think a lot of people think they have their one of
two things they think of when they think of self-care
and those don’t work for them. – No. – And so then they think,
well, that’s just garbage. That’s not gonna work, so sure, whatever. – Yeah, meditation, woo. – Mm-hmm, I’m gonna do
some breathing, (mumbles). – And a lot of people honestly don’t feel deserving of self-care. They feel self-care just marches
in with guilt as a partner. – Oh, people thinking
they don’t deserve it and how dare they take
time for themselves. A lot of my mothers, my
patients who are mothers will say that well, I have
too many people relying on me. I don’t have time for that. Then they’re not gonna get dinner or this isn’t gonna happen and I don’t wanna put that on them. – Right. And what are you modeling for those kids? This is how you take care
of life, run on empty. In fact, I actually challenged my clients to put gas in their tank
when it’s a quarter empty. Just be mindful, never
get into the orange. – Into the orange or the red. It’s almost like the, I
think it’s a Roosevelt quote where he says, “The time to fix the roof “is when the sun is shining.” – Right!
– You wouldn’t wait. – Exactly!
– You don’t wanna wait for it to come crashing down. – Exactly.
– But we do that emotionally. So if someone does, we’re
talking about running the red and running out of gas, if someone is in the red
or even in the orange for a really long period of time, what can that do to our system? – Oh! I mean, how much time do we have? (both laughs) – We got plenty. – It starts with just regular energy, our relationships get more cut off, we don’t spend time with people. So now we’re turning inward more. We’re internalizing. That’s where the depression
starts to come in, you get short fuses
first, then depression, all that raises your heart
rate and your blood pressure and then we’re looking to eat or drink or take a drug to calm us down so now you’ve gotten
into chemistry projects that don’t usually go very well. And then your adrenals get zapped out and then I hate to use the C word but all that stress
when we’re internalizing can lead from anything to
stroke, heart attack, cancer. – Yeah, you name it. – It’s disease, right? That’s what that word means, disease. – Interesting, yeah. So the sooner we catch it, the better. – That’s why I do this. I had a heart attack when I was 37 and I’m like, what am I doing? I tell people my heart attacked my brain ’cause my brain had all
the stuff it wanted to do and didn’t have time for me. – Yeah, and that makes sense. My whole motto from the get-go is healthy mind, healthy body, because they are so inextricably linked and one can definitely hurt the other. – Yeah. And get prophylactic about it. Start taking care of your mental health while the sun is shining. – Yeah, exactly! So if someone’s at home and they feel like they might be running towards
the orange or the red, what’s something they could do, maybe one or two things
they could do today to feel better? – So I’m trying to reintroduce the phrase come to your
senses because our senses are not in that thinking
part of our brain, our frontal cortex that wants to think our way out of everything. We’re animals. We are animals with
egomaniacal frontal cortexes and we need to soothe. So when your brain is doing this and you’re feeling that
stress, come to your senses. Grab something that smells really good. Those essential oils, they are essential. Feel something cool or something warm. Look at something intriguing. Light a fire. Look at a beautiful sunset. Look at flowers, just something
that soothes you visually. Music, especially for teenagers. I can tell the head space I’m in. If I’m listening to news, I’m like okay, I’m in that head space. – It’s alpha. – Yeah! When I’m listening to
music, all of a sudden, the news feels more beta. – Oh yeah, beta.
– Right? – Mm-hmm. – But the music now, music
comes a savage piece. So we’re equipped. We’re equipped to calm ourselves. We just don’t know that
we own the material that we can use.
– Yeah, we have it all. We have all we need.
– It’s very Wizard of Oz. – Mm-hmm, it is! We have our own guy behind the curtains pulling all the elvers and we just have to go
and pull the right ones. – Just click your heels! – I love that. Well, thank you so much for taking the time–
– Thank you. – To show us around and talk about this. Hopefully it helps some people. I’m sure it will. – I’m sure it will too. Thank you for what you do.
– Oh yeah. – And come anytime! – Yeah, I would love to. It’s so peaceful here. – Yay! That’s the idea. – Wow that was so cool and educational. I have heard about neurofeedback before but I had no idea how it
worked or even if it worked. Although, I will be honest. I did read an article a while back that said Tom Brady used it to improve his health and his game. And although you know I am
not a fan of the Patriots, go Seahawks, I do recognize
just how many times he has won or even just made it to The
Super Bowl, so it must work! And you can do it while watching a movie. I mean, come on. I’m gonna have to try this out. I also love the way Laura explained how therapy and stress
treatment should be holistic, working with our five senses
and our brain and body. And again, just like Barry shared before about burnout and the brain, Laura also gave us proof
that there are real changes in our brain when we are stressed out and long-term effects if
it goes on for too long. Okay, so I could go on
and on about that center. It is so amazing what
they have going on there. But let’s get into your
homework for the week. Now that we know how many
stress can affect us, what are some tools you can use this week to better manage it? Please work on a list
of at least five things that you could do to lower
your stress level this week. Maybe that’s petting a dog
or doing guided meditation or even working on a personal art project. Okay, now let’s also get
that comment section going. What was the most shocking
or unexpected thing that you learned in this episode? Are you able to apply that
learning to your life? If so, how? Let me know down below and
I will see you next week. Bye! (calm ethereal music) – Yeah, it’s been an issue
pretty much my whole life though. I don’t think I ever really, I do sleep. It’s not like I don’t sleep. I just sleep weird hours. – Do you sleep soundly for full chunks or do you wake up? – Nightmares? I have nightmares? – Every night? – Mm-hmm. (calm ethereal music)