We may believe we are very sophisticated but in some respects we still have survival-mode “monkey brains.” Our nervous system reacts the same way to a sabre tooth tiger chasing us as it does to a traffic jam or a work deadline. Our bloodstream is flooded with the same stress-chemicals to fuel our escape. In the past this extreme response was helpful because we needed adrenaline to help us run faster and think faster to survive. But in a non-emergency those chemicals create free radicals and are actually destructive.
How can we stop this cycle of stress and reactivity? Massage actually changes the nervous system response from “Fight or Flight” mode and eases us into “Rest and Digest” where our conscious and unconscious breathe a sigh of relief and let down their guard while at the same time relaxing the muscles that provide constant validation we’re stressed!