Fight, Flight, or Freeze: Exploring our Stress Responses



I’m sure we’ve all heard of the fight, flight, or freeze responses. Maybe you’ve even discovered what your default response to feeling threatened is.


If you often find yourself getting angry, loud, and argumentative it’s most likely that your default response is “fight.” If you encountered a lion in the wild you’d try to take that 400 lb fella down with your bare hands (you may not succeed, but hey… at least you tried).


If you’re someone that tries to avoid conflict and sweep the negativity under the rug it’s most likely that your default response is “flight.” If you saw that wild lion, you’d run like Forrest and hope that you just happened to be fast that day.


And lastly, if you’re someone that doesn’t say anything, but also doesn’t try to escape it’s most likely that your default response is “freeze.” You’re the one to act like a statue and pray that the lion doesn’t think you’re tasty.


But why are these three options the main defaults for the majority of people? Is one better than the others? Can you train yourself within your default response to make it more acceptable?