You’ve probably heard of fight or flight? You know that thing that helped us run away from tigers when we were cavewomen. But did you know that this primal survival technique could be the number 1 reason why you can’t get pregnant. Not convinced? I know from personal experience how profound the fight or flight mechanism is in shutting down fertility, and I see it more and more with the women I work with in my clinic. If a woman’s body senses that she is in danger, it will quite simply prevent her from getting pregnant.  This intelligent on board wisdom is why women’s periods stop in time of war or famine. Clever old Mother Nature won’t allow offspring to be born into a high risk environment, and why would she?

Shortly after I was married, I was the victim of an aggravated burglary in my home. Masked men broke into our house at 1am, and stormed into our bedroom wearing balaclavas and brandishing crowbars. They had come for our car, and after my husband flung them the keys, they were gone in seconds, but the impact of the event stayed with us both much longer. For the next 5 years my periods were absent. At the time I had just come off the pill and attributed the lack of periods to an after effect of my lengthy use of this contraceptive, which is known to disrupt hormones. When my doctor subsequently attributed this amenorrhea to PCOS (despite me having any of the traditional symptoms), I accepted it, never linking the emotional trauma I had suffered to this dramatic impact on my fertility.

In addition to this event, I was working in a high pressure job and was in fight or flight on a daily basis. I wasn’t sleeping and was coming home every night crying. Like most career women, I accepted stressful scenario as being an expected pitfall of having a well paid corporate job. Eventually I embarked on some EFT treatment (emotional freedom technique) with Sarah Holland,  to remove any subliminal blocks I may have to getting pregnant. Sarah quickly identified this incident as a clear fertility block, we tapped on my memory of the burglary, and the next day my periods returned, as if by magic. Eventually I made the decision to leave my stressful job, taking myself out of the daily fight or flight, and the shift in my health and fertility was incredible.

Fight or flight should only ever be a fleeting response to escape danger. Our bodies can only every be in one mode at a time. Either we reside in rest and repair, or fight and flight.

Even more fascinating is the fact that our bodies do not know the difference between real and imagined danger, so if you are freaking out about that deadline you have at work, your body reacts the same way as if it was facing life threatening danger.

So as I tell my clients, and I learned myself, in order to get your body reading to conceive you must limit the time you are in fight or flight. This means reducing your stress levels, and even reducing high impact exercise such as running or high impact cardio, and replacing it with yoga and low impact exercise such as walking or swimming. Meditation and mindfulness is also an essential tool to reduce stress.

So if you want to boost your fertility, get the f*** out of fight or flight!


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