Want to learn more about stress, anxiety or psychology terms? We've created a full glossary with important stress and psychological terms to help you. You may see also see these terms sprinkled throughout our articles, so we highly recommend bookmarking this page as a resource!

# | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z 

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4-7-8 Breathing: This is a deep breathing technique that is used in order to treat anxiety, as well as to treat insomnia. It is said to help some people get to sleep in as little as 60 seconds. Breathe in through the nose quietly and blow air out forcefully to make a whoosh noise. Breathe out for four seconds, then hold the breath for seven seconds and then exhale completely for eight. Repeat 2-4 times.


A

Acute Stress: Acute stress is stress that comes on suddenly and lasts for a preset duration. This is what we often refer to as the ‘fight or flight response’, which is triggered by the sympathetic nervous system in response to danger.

Acute stress increases muscle tone, it improves blood flow to the brain and muscles and it suppresses the digestion and immune system. It also creates a kind of tunnel vision and causes feelings of urgency and anxiousness. In the right context, acute stress is a valuable and adaptive response that can help us to overcome danger. The problem arises when the stress is out of context (during a date or interview) or when it is allowed to continue for long periods, at which point it is considered chronic stress.​

Adrenal Fatigue: Adrenal fatigue is what many of us would more colloquially refer to as "burn out." This is when you have been in a heightened state of arousal/stress for a long period, or when you have had many frequent spells of acute stress over a set duration. Either way, this constant action of the adrenal system and the constant production of adrenaline and norepinephrine can take its toll on the body, eventually preventing our ability to produce those necessary hormones and neurotransmitters. Thus, those with adrenal fatigue may find they lack motivation, energy and awareness and that they feel tired and even depressed a lot of the time. The best remedy? Rest!

Adrenal Glands: The adrenal glands are glands that produce hormones such as adrenaline – hence their name. As well as adrenaline, they are also responsible for producing cortisol and aldosterone among others. These are endocrine glands more technically referred to as the suprarenal glands. They are located just above the kidneys. Adrenaline is one of the key chemicals responsible for our stress response and our fight or flight state. Cortisol is the ‘stress’ hormone but also serves a number of other functions, such as helping us to wake up in the morning and acting as a counter to melatonin.

Adrenaline: Adrenaline is one of the primary hormones responsible for our fight or flight response–the acute state of stress. It is responsible for modulating the rate of circulation, as well as breathing, metabolism of carbohydrates and more. During the stress response, large amounts of adrenaline are produced by the adrenal glands, located just above the kidneys, which causes the racing heart rate and rapid breathing that we associate with stress. These are adaptive and positive changes when in the right context as they give us more energy to run from danger, or to confront an aggressor.

Adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH): This hormone is produced by the pituitary gland and is responsible for stimulating the release of cortisol – one of the primary stress hormones. Therefore, if you can regulate ACTH, you can regulate cortisol.

Agonist: An agonist is anything that will trigger a response biologically when it comes into contact with a receptor. For example then, if the body releases dopamine and this dopamine then interacts with dopamine receptors in the anterior cingulate cortex, then in this case, the dopamine is acting as an agonist.

Allostasis: Homeostasis is the condition where the body is between arousal and relaxation and can be thought of as calm but focused and awake. This is our resting state. Allostasis meanwhile is the process that allows you to achieve this state.

Allostatic Load: Allostatic load is described as being the damage or the wear and tear that the body incurs as a result of being in a constant state of stress. This is the result of continuous arousal as well as constant fluctuation of key hormones and neurotransmitters with suppression of specific organs.

Allostatic State: An allostatic state is essential homeostasis. The difference is that this specifically refers to homeostasis accomplished through physiological or behavioral change and involves the action of the HPA axis hormones, autonomic nervous system, cytokines etc.

Amino Acids: Amino acids are carbon chains that act as the building blocks of proteins. Amino acids are found in protein such as meats, as well as in plants where they are in a slightly less bioavailable form. The body breaks down these amino acids and then uses them in order to rebuild the tissue in our own bodies – muscle, bone, flesh etc. This is why bodybuilders consume protein shakes in order to help their muscles to grow.

But amino acids are used for a lot more than just muscle tissue. Amino acids for instance are used in enzymes (chemicals that act as catalysts for reactions) and they are used for creating neurotransmitters, many of which control our mood and stress levels.​

Amygdala: The amygdala is a brain region that is found in each hemisphere. It is described as being almond shaped and is responsible for our ability to experience emotions. Thus it plays a key role in our modulation of stress and relaxation at the opposite end of that.

Anterior Pituitary: The anterior pituitary is the front of the pituitary gland (anterior meaning ‘front’, such as antennae which are at the front of the head). This specific area of the pituitary produces six hormones: human growth hormone, prolactin, follicle stimulating hormone, luteinizing hormone, adrenocorticotropic hormone, thyroid stimulating hormone. It plays a key role in the regulation of the stress response.

Anxiety: Anxiety is a general term for mild levels of stress. Many of us will feel anxious when we are faced with challenges, when we are unsure about something that we are required to do or when we don’t feel safe. The term ‘anxiety disorder’ can refer to anything ranging from phobias to OCD, to paranoia.

Aromatherapy: Aromatherapy is a form of therapy that utilizes scents in order to try and calm nerves and make you feel at ease. Aromatherapy often uses scented oils (essential oils) such as bergamot, lemon and eucalyptus, many of which have been shown to raise levels of feel good hormones such as serotonin.

Ashwagandha: Ashwaghanda is a naturally occurring herb that is traditionally used in ayurvedic healing. It is known for its restorative properties and is believed to help combat anxiety, depression, stress and more. It also acts as a nootropic, reportedly being useful for improving memory and reaction time.


B

Baoding Balls: Baoding balls are small metallic balls used to combat stress. Unlike stress balls, their intended purpose is not to be squeezed or used for catharsis, but rather to offer a soothing motion and to almost massage the palms as they are manipulated. Some will also make calming chiming noises during this process.

Belly Breathing (Diaphragmatic breathing): Belly breathing is a form of breathing that involves breathing through the stomach first. To perform, you relax the abdominal cavity allowing the diaphragm to drop into it and letting the lungs expand from the bottom upward. This is ‘correct’ breathing and it can help to improve parasympathetic tone.

Biotin: Biotin (vitamin B7) is a substance that plays an important role in the metabolism process by allowing the body to convert food into glucose for energy. It also plays a role in the health of hair and nails. Be careful eating raw eggs, as this can lead to a biotin deficiency!

Blood Pressure: Blood pressure refers to the pressure of the blood circulating through your veins, which in turn describes its density within the space. Blood pressure is heightened during stress due to increased blood viscosity and increased heart rate. This can potentially be dangerous and lead to serious health issues such as cardiovascular/heart disease.

Breath Counting: Breath counting is a form of controlled breathing that can be used to effectively counter stress. Simply, you focus on your breath and count as you inhale and exhale. It is beneficial for taking your mind off of the stressor and for improving parasympathetic tone.

Buddha: Buddha, also known as Butsu and Guatama, is the founder of Buddhism. Buddhism is a religion that teaches karma and reincarnation, and also encourages meditation and enlightenment.


C

Cardiovascular: Your cardiovascular system is your circulatory system and heart. For instance, cardiovascular exercise is any exercise that increases the heartrate (meaning it continues for long enough to utilize the aerobic energy system). It is important to consider the impact of stress on cardiovascular health.

Chi: Chi is the ancient Chinese concept of an ancient life force. Chi circulation is believed to correlate with good health and visualization practices can help to improve the mind muscle connection using this notion. It is also spelled Qi and Ki.

Cholesterol: Cholesterol is a term for fatty deposits (called triglycerides) that circulate around the blood. Cholesterol comes in two forms: high density lipoprotein (HDL) and low density lipoprotein (LDL). LDL is considered the ‘bad’ kind of cholesterol and can increase blood pressure and risk of heart disease.

Chronic Stress: Chronic stress is the negative form of stress that is allowed to continue for long durations. When extended like this, stress can take a toll on the body due to the way that it suppresses the activity of the immune and digestive systems and keeps the body in a heightened state of arousal.

Circadian Rhythm: Circadian rhythms are the rhythms that control our sleep/wake cycle. These are controlled by "internal pacemakers" (biological factors) as well as "external zietgebers" (environmental factors). Interestingly, everything from the position of the sun in the sky, to the amount of light reaching your eyes, to your interactions with other people can impact on your body’s wakefulness.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: Cognitive behavioral therapy, also called CBT, is a psychotherapeutic intervention that focusses on looking at the thought processes of patients and helping them to deconstruct those thoughts using "cognitive restructuring". This has proven to be a highly effective therapeutic tool, especially for such conditions as OCD and chronic stress.

Color Therapy: Color therapy is the practice of using color to alter a person's emotional state. For instance, while colors like red and orange can increase our heart rates and arousal, others like blue and green can make us feel calmer and more relaxed. Color therapy takes advantage of this fact in order to help alleviate stress and improve mood.

Cortisol: Cortisol is one of the primary stress hormones that makes us feel anxious and gives us worrying thoughts. As an excitatory neurotransmitter, it increases brain function and causes racing minds. Cortisol is linked to a range of other hormones and is closely tied to the sleep/wake cycle, as well as our blood sugar levels and appetite.


D

Deep Breathing: Deep breathing is stress relief technique often used during meditation. By breathing deeply, you activate the "rest and digest" state and thereby help to reduce arousal and restore calm. Make sure to perform this slowly to avoid hyperventilation and fainting.

Depression: Depression is a mental health disorder that causes chronic low mood. There are various forms of depression, with one of the most well-known being bipolar disorder. Here, patients will alternate between periods of depression and periods of excitability and positive mood called manic episodes. The cause for depression is not fully understood but it appears to be linked to stress, inflammation through pro-inflammatory cytokines and adrenal fatigue among other things.

Distress: A state of distress is a state of feeling highly stressed and helpless. This is linked with the psychological state known as learned helplessness where victims eventually give up on trying to improve their circumstances.

Dopamine: Dopamine is a hormone/neurotransmitter that is linked to motivation and reward. It was once thought of as the "reward" hormone and was believed to be produced in response to anything intrinsically rewarding. However, we now know that dopamine has more to do with the anticipation of reward and that it is rather produced when we are working toward something important or focusing on something. It is linked with stress, which in itself is a response to situations that the body deems important.


E

Eleuthero (Siberian Ginseng): Eleuthero is a form of Ginseng that is believed to enhance mental clarity, to support the immune system and to help prevent stress. It is also believed to increase energy levels and can be used as part of a supplement stack to help combat chronic stress and anxiety disorders.

Emotional Stress: Emotional stress is stress that is brought on by emotional factors. This can manifest as anxiety, agitation, moodiness etc. It is important to recognize the complex interplay between our emotion, our physiology and our psychology.

Emotion Focused Coping: Emotion focused coping is a form of therapy which, as the name implies, focuses primarily on the emotional aspects of anxiety and stress. This is recommended for situations that are not easily "fixable" and that instead benefit from simply learning to adapt to the new emotional landscape. This is in contrast to problem focused coping which focuses on the actual problem itself and the best ways to address that.

Ensō: An ensō (circle) is a Zen symbol that's hand-drawn in one or two free form brushstrokes. It symbolizes the moment when your mind is free to let your body create, as well as enlightenment, strength, and elegance.

Essential Oils: Essential oils are the chemical activate components of many herbs and plants and are burned during aromatherapy sessions in order to help calm the mood, reduce inflammation and trigger a number of other beneficial effects.

Eustress: Eustress describes the kind of stress that is "positive" in an objective manner. While we might think of stress as being a negative thing, the reality is that we need a small amount of stress in order to feel motivated to work effectively. Without any stress, we would not study for exams, or save money for the future. Eustress is what we consider the "sweet spot."


F

Fight-or-Flight Response: This is a colloquial term describing the acute stress response. It is so named because this is the intended role for our stress response: to prepare us either to run and escape the situation (flight) or to turn and face an aggressor (fight).


G

General Adaptation Syndrome: General adaptation syndrome describes three stages of our reaction to stress as suggested by psychologist Hans Selye. These are alarm, resistance and exhaustion, which generally can be thought of as the acute fight or flight response, followed by chronic stress and finally adrenal fatigue.


H

Habituation: Habituation means becoming habituated, which can occur in response to a stressor eventually. In other words, while the introduction of new, stressful stimuli might at first cause a stress response, this can eventually lead to desensitization as the individual adapts to their "new normal."

Hans Selye: Hans Selye was a leading psychologist looking at the field of stress specifically. He proposed the general adaptation syndrome, as well as presenting the "stressful life events rating scale" which indicates the most stressful common life events.

HDL: HDL is the "good kind" of cholesterol. This stands for High Density Lipoprotein and we get it from a range of foods such as eggs and avocados. Fat is not bad for you per say, but rather it depends on the type of fat and where it comes from.

Hippocampus: The hippocampus is a brain area which is located in the medial temporal lobe. It plays an important part in the limbic system and helps to regulate emotion. It is also associated with memory and helps us to understand the phenomenon of the "flashbulb memory" – the tendency to form highly vivid memories during periods of arousal.

Homeostasis: The body spends a lot of time in one of two states: fight or flight and rest and digest. These can be considered somewhat synonymous with catabolic and anabolic states. However. There is a midpoint between the two ends of the spectrum where the body is calmly focused. This is homeostasis.

Hug Therapy: Hug therapy is a method used to treat stress. This is precisely what it sounds like and involves hugging the patient and encouraging them to engage in more physical contact with loved ones. Hugging releases endorphins, which can act to counteract the stress response.

Hypothalamus: The hypothalamus is a brain area that has numerous functions. Among these is to link the nervous system and endocrine system through the pituitary gland. This gives it a crucial role in managing homeostasis and the fight or flight response.


I

Impulsive aggression: Impulsive aggression is the feeling of anger that can come on suddenly and result in violence or antisocial behavior. This may be caused by IED (Intermittent Explosive Disorder), which in turn is characterized by explosive fits of rage.


K

Kaizen: Kaizen is the Japanese philosophy of continuous improvement through small steps. The idea is that in order to create lasting change in your life, you should try to focus on small things that you can do regularly, rather than trying to completely overhaul your lifestyle in a single go. For instance, doing just 10 push ups a day is a small change that overtime can improve your health and lead to greater training programs.

Kava Kava: Kava, also known as kava kava is a root that comes from the South Pacific Islands and that is used in supplementary form for its calming effects in order to treat stress and anxiety. It works by increasing the amount of GABA in the brain, which is an inhibitory neurotransmitter.


L

LDL: LDL is the form of cholesterol that we consider to be the "bad kind." This stands for low density lipoprotein and it should be avoided as it causes fatty deposits on the insides of the blood vessels (veins and arteries). This raises blood pressure and increases the risk of heart attack or heart disease–especially during periods of intense stress.

Libido: Libido is our sex drive. This can be greatly impacted by stress, with stress being responsible for impotence in men and a lack of sexual desire in both men and women. Stress can cause this by altering hormonal balance, as well as by impacting on blood circulation.


M

Macrophages: This is a large phagocytic cell that is found in a stationary form in tissue or a mobile form in white blood cells at infection sites. Changes to macrophages have been observed during periods of high stress.

Magnesium: Magnesium is a mineral that can have positive effects in countering stress. Not only does magnesium help to relax the muscles but it also reduces activity in the brain and aids sleep. A particularly effective form for crossing the blood-brain barrier is magnesium threonate.

Meditation: Meditation is one of the single most effective tools for combating stress and has been shown to work wonders in countless studies. There are many forms of medication from mindfulness to transcendental. At any rate, it is perhaps best thought of as controlled focus.

Mental Tension: Sometimes it can be useful to think of the brain as a muscle. We want our brain to be relaxed and calm but a lot of the time it is tense and stressed. This can actually also cause physical, muscular tension as an effect of adrenaline and dopamine is to increase contractions in the muscles.

Mesolimbic dopamine system: There are numerous dopaminergic pathways, which are neurological structures that are activated by dopamine. This is one such pathway that is linked particularly with addictive behavior, whereby dopamine is released in anticipation of reward and encourages addictive action.

Metabolism: Our metabolism controls our physical state and allows us to use energy from our food. We can be either in states of arousal (catabolic) or in states of calm restoration (anabolic) and these correlate with our states of stress and calm. It is crucial to consider the role of the physiology when trying to understand stress.

Mindfulness: Mindfulness is simply the act of being more aware of your own thoughts. This can be practiced as a form of meditation or as an ongoing effort to change what you focus on and how you react to stress. It is a key component of CBT.

Mobilize Energy: Mobilizing energy is the primary goal of the fight or flight response. Heart rate increases and blood vessels constrict in order to help blood move around the body quicker. Hormonal and metabolic changes allow the body to utilize more carbohydrates and sugar. Breathing increases in order to break down fat stores and supply the brain with oxygen.

Morning Breathing: Morning breathing exercises can be among the most effective tools to ensure a day of low stress. In the morning, stress hormones such as cortisol are actually among the highest they will be, making this an ideal time to get your parasympathetic tone in check.

Muscular Relaxation: The brain and the body are intimately linked and the channel of communication is two way. Stress can cause muscles to tense up and contract, whereas when we are mentally relaxed, our muscles tend to relax too. We can use this system in reverse: relax your muscles and you relax your mind.


N

Negative Feedback: Negative feedback is a response to the use of certain medications and supplements which can render them inert. This is a biological response to high hormones, that causes the body to scale back endogenous production of said hormones.

Nervous System: The nervous system refers to the network of nerve that run throughout your body. This is responsible for your ability to think and to perceive, as well as your ability to move, to feel and to generally interact with the world around you.

Neuropsychologist: A neuropsychologist is a professional who applies neurological understanding to the treatment and management of mental health. The conventional approach among psychologists often doesn’t actually involve the use or understanding of underlying biology. As one TED talk put it, psychologists are the only doctors who don’t actually look at the organ they are treating.

Neuroscience: Neuroscience is the science of the brain. Whereas psychology looks at our thoughts and emotions and tries to cure these by changing the way we experience the world internally, neuroscience looks at chemicals and the physical structure of the brain–addressing mental health more like a surgeon or a doctor.

Noradrenaline: Whereas adrenaline is the stress hormone secreted by the adrenal medulla, noradrenaline is the key neurotransmitter that acts on the brain and the sympathetic nervous system.

Norepinephrine: Norepinephrine is synonymous with noradrenaline. See above.


P

Panic Attack: A panic attack is a form of acute stress response that can cause huge changes in a person’s vitals and their physiology. Panic attacks are characterized by rapid breathing, racing thoughts and a crushing feeling in the chest. They can lead to fainting and are often associated with phobias, especially agoraphobia.

Physical Stress: Stress is a broad term that describes a state of arousal. This can have internal, psychological causes or physical causes. For instance if you are very hot, very tired, dehydrated or in pain then this can cause physical stress with a similar response.

Pituitary Gland: The pituitary gland is a pea-shaped structure that is located just below the hippocampus in the brain. Its job is to secrete hormones and in particular cortisol, which is the stress hormone and which can cause anxiety.

Problem Focused Coping: Problem focused coping is the opposite of emotion focused coping. This means focusing on a problem by looking for ways to solve that problem. This can work for some people by giving them a sense of control but it can cause problems in scenarios where there is no easy solution. According to the book Men Are From Mars, men have a greater tendency toward this form of problem solving.

Progressive Muscle Relaxation: Progressive muscle relaxation is relaxation technique often associated with body scan meditation. The aim is to progressively focus on muscles starting at the head and moving down through the body. By contracting and then immediately relaxing the muscles, a state of complete physical relaxation and hopefully psychological relaxation can be achieved.

Psychological Stress: Just as stress can be physical in origin, so too can it be psychological. In fact, this is what most of us will associate with stress in general: fear for the future or anxiety over current circumstances.


R

Receptors: Receptors are sites in the brain that can respond to neurotransmitters. These are activated by specific chemicals. For dopamine to affect a specific brain region then, it needs to have a high density of dopamine receptors. Think of neurotransmitters like shapes and receptors like shaped holes.

Some anti-anxiety medication works by blocking or activating specific receptor sites. This is also how caffeine works and some natural remedies.

Resilience: Resilience refers to our ability to continue through periods of stress or depression. A resilient person is someone who can plough onward even when the going is tough. The term is also often used in business where resilience can describe a company capable of facing competition, economic hardship etc.

Roll Breathing: Roll breathing is a method similar to belly breathing. The term refers to the rolling motion of the stomach rising and then the chest. By holding your hands on your torso and feeling for this movement, you can control your breathing effectively.


S

Self-Contemplation: Self contemplation is the examination of your own thoughts with a hope to gain further insight into the working of your own mind and thus greater control over your emotional state. Self-contemplation goes hand in hand with mindfulness.

Sensory Channel: Sensory channels refer to the different senses and the way that these come in through the organs. Focusing on different sensory channels can be a useful form of mindfulness in order to increase presence and avoid unhelpful rumination.

Shinrin-Yoku (Forest Bathing): This is another natural remedy for stress that simply involves being in a forest environment and then taking in those surroundings to connect with nature. Studies show that being in lush green environments can combat stress, likely because we have evolved to associate them with natural resources and shelter.

Situational Crisis​: A situational crisis is considered a crisis that affects an individual, which might be injury, divorce or loss of employment. Conversely, something like a natural disaster would not be considered to be a situational crisis as it would affect many people.

Social Anxiety: Social anxiety refers to anxiety that is brought on specifically by social situations. Many of us will experience anxiety when we need to talk in front of a large group, or spend time with strangers. This can of course be prohibitive and prevent us from fulfilling our full potential in our careers or our relationships.

Stoicism: Stoicism is a school of philosophy that teaches specific coping mechanisms. Stoics believe that you can’t control the world around you but that you can control your reaction to it. Stoicism advises that you fortify yourself against potential negative events and prepare for the worst so that things can’t catch you off guard.

Stress: Stress is a broad term that is used to describe a state of arousal associated with anxiety, danger or concern. We are stressed when we are placed in negative situations and when we suspect bad outcomes are on the horizon. However, stress can also be positive (eustress), negative (chronic stress), mental (emotional stress) etc.

Stress Balls: Stress balls are soft toys designed to provide catharsis. These can be squeezed in order to help release psychic tension and help you to feel better. It is worth noting that catharsis has not been shown in studies to be an effective method for dealing with long-term stress.

Stress Eating: Stress eating is a response to stressful situations. Eating triggers the release of sugar into the blood and ensuing serotonin (feel good hormone) that counteracts stress. This can lead to compulsive behavior however and eventually weight gain. Weight gain combined with chronic stress can place serious strain on the heart and be very dangerous.

Stress Factor: Stress factor is the ‘stress intensity factor’. This is an arbitrary measure to assess how stressed a person is or how stressed a situation is.

Stress Hormones: Stress hormones are all hormones that are produced during a stress response and the fight or flight state. These include adrenaline, noradrenaline, dopamine, cortisol and others. Note that some of these would be more accurately described as neurotransmitters, but the term does not usually tend to discriminate.

Stress Leave: Stress leave is time taken off of work in order to recover from stress or to deal with the consequences of stress. There is still some stigma surrounding the decision to take time off for this "invisible" illness and some people might feel pressured not to. However, stress should be considered a serious mental health risk and taking leave is an effective way to prevent a breakdown or more serious long-term problems.

Stressor: A stressor is a trigger that causes stress. During our evolutionary history, stressors would have included things such as predators or fires. Today, stressors are often more intangible and abstract and not as easily circumvented. They can include such things as debt or relationship problems.

Stress Response: The stress response describes the body’s response to stressors. This will generally refer to the acute fight or flight response, though it can also refer to milder forms of chronic stress.

Stress Therapy: Stress therapy is therapy aimed specifically at treating stress. This can take on many different forms or alternatively include a myriad of different forms of treatment by combining the likes of CBT and forest bathing with color therapy or aromatherapy.

Stress Trigger: A stress trigger is a stressful stimulus that creates the fight or flight response. It is synonymous with stressors.

Sympathetic Nervous System: The sympathetic nervous system is the network of nerves and glands responsible for triggering the aroused state of fight or flight. It works against the parasympathetic nervous system which conversely puts the body into a relaxed "rest and digest" state.


T

Thought Challenging: Thought challenging is a strategy used as part of cognitive restructuring from CBT. The objective is to look at the nature of your thoughts that might be causing stress responses. In other words, are you making the situation seem worse by building it up in your mind’s eye? Are you exaggerating the response by focusing on it? Thought challenging means looking at the underlying beliefs that lead to stress (I’m going to fail, I’m going to fall, people will laugh at me) and then analyzing them in a detached and honest manner in order to ascertain whether they in fact hold merit.

A similar technique that has the same end goal is "hypothesis testing." Here, you don’t just challenge the thoughts but actually put them to the test. If you are afraid people will laugh at you if you stutter for instance, then you might purposefully stutter and invite that laughter.

Thyroid: The thyroid is responsible for producing hormones T3 and T4 which help to control the metabolism. Hypothyroidism can lead to a state where the body doesn’t get enough energy from carbohydrates and you therefore feel tired and sluggish while gaining weight. Hyperthyroidism is an overactive thyroid, which has the opposite effect of making you feel overly anxious and packed with energy.


Y

Yerba Mate: Yerba mate is a herbal tea that is thought to be an effective tool for increasing focus while combating stress. Yerba mate contains a combination of xanthines (caffeine, l-theanine, theobromine) which have the effect of lightly stimulating the mind while avoiding the anxiety and jitters associated with caffeine use. This drink was described by Darwin as the "perfect stimulant."


Z

​Zazen: Zazen is a form of medication used in Zen Buddhism. Zazen actually translates to "seated meditation" and is a primary practice of Buddhism.

Zen: Zen is a state of calm and presence and mindfulness. It actually has its origins in the Japanese Mahayana Buddhism and it emphasizes the importance of meditation and intuition over ritual or reference to scripture.