Stress is one important factor that leads to many different health problems. In today’s modern life full of frustrations and demands, stress is a way for many people to respond to it. When they feel pressured or threatened, their psychological response to stress is automatically activated called “fight or flight” or stress response. Fortunately, there are people who know how to reduce these stressors in life.
This interview with Stress Relief Facilitator Brett Cotter gives us an overview of how stress affects our health and life in general. Read the article and stay stress-free.
Why choose to focus in facilitating stress relief?
Understanding my own stress on a deep level has changed my life for the better, and I would like to leave our children a better world. I was also shocked to learn few things;
- Stress is the #1 cause of death in our country (which globally claims about 110M people per year)
- 85% of all illness and disease is caused by stress;
- 75% of which are preventable.
These statistics told me, if people are educated on how to handle stress they will live longer and happier lives. I saw such a great need to develop and share the right tools, I just had to.
How do you describe your 15 years of experience in the stress relief field?
My experience started with a passion for self-discovery, to better understand my stress, my reactions, etc. I was lucky to come across a few teachers and experiences that opened my mind and put me on a more conscious path in life. I wanted to share what I had learned.
I had early success in one-on-one and group sessions, helping people relieve physical, mental, and emotional stress. I felt personal satisfaction from doing that work on a soul level. I knew it is what I wanted to do. Then I began doing group sessions in hospitals, non-profits, schools, companies, etc. Then I took on development projects; making tools anyone can access online, mobile, etc.
What do you most enjoy about your work?
Definitely, I enjoy facilitating group sessions, one-on-one coaching over the phone, and hearing how one of our tools helped someone.
How did Stress Is Gone start? Kindly tell us about it.
In 2008, I was watching a John Lennon documentary. The film talked about the "War Is Over" billboards he and Yoko put up in a number of cities. Something clicked in my brain when I saw that. I liked that he was advertising the end result of what he wanted. Stress Is Gone was the second or third name that came to mind, and the company was born.
What is The Stress Is Gone Method of Letting Go?
The S.I.G. Method of Letting Go includes;
- Understanding the source of our stress.
- Processing the accumulated stress.
- Using technology to automate our stress management.
Each S.I.G. class has 4 distinct phases;
- Music & Movement to reduce physical stress
- Assessment to surface the root cause of our stress
- Guided Expression to reduce emotional stress
- Meditation to reduce mental stress.
What do you think are the major factors that cause stress to people? Why?
The major factors are fear and lack of education.
Fear – as all stress stems from the Fight-or-Flight Reaction which is wired throughout our cells and psyche. This reaction is triggered every time information is received through our 5 senses which our brain interprets as danger.
Stress starts with a perception, is perpetuated by worrisome thoughts, and is emotionally fueled by fear.
If we consciously work to reduce our irrational fears, our perception clears, so we see reality with more clarity. So fear not only fuels our stress, it also causes stress to over trigger.
Lack of Education – it’s the second major factor that contributes to excess stress in people today. In 1987, science confirmed meditators have 87% less hospitalization rates than non-meditators for heart disease (Orme-Johnson). Heart disease is the leading cause of death in our country.
Meditation should have been written into the core curriculum since 1987, but it's not. Everyone in our country should know meditation reduces hospitalization rates for heart disease by 87%, nervous system diseases by 87%, tumors by 55%, infectious disease by 30%, and mental disorders by 30%.
The time for education and awareness is now.
What can people do to stay stress-free?
The 1st key to managing stress is learning how to stop a reaction. Whenever you become stressed;
- Touch the tension (usually in your stomach or chest)
- Breathe deep and slow
- Once per breath silently say, "I'm okay". Within 2 minutes, the stress is gone.
- You can also do this to fall asleep quickly
How are mobile apps helpful in relieving stress?
I can speak for the "Stress Is Gone" mobile app which does a few things;
- Predicts and shuts down stress real-time
- Completely sets up your meditation practice
- Helps you process accumulated stress and emotions
- Helps you fall asleep at night
- Offers 1-touch instant relief
What mobile apps would you recommend to substance abuse patients who are also dealing with stress?
I would recommend The Stress Is Gone mobile app or the PTSD FREE mobile app. From a substance abuse standpoint these apps can help the individual;
- Predict and shut down their urges to use (by using the Stopper tab)
- Heal to the root of their pain emotionally driving the addiction (by using the Resolve tab)
- Re-pattern their brain from automatic addictive tendencies (by using the MyMeds tab for meditation)
What are your life habits in staying calmer, healthier, and happier?
I focus on God, my family, pursuing my dreams, meditating, and remembering to tie up my camel.