Bioreactions (i.e., fight, flight, freeze, or appease) include quick responses to stimuli or threats that are dangerous and fearful experiences, many of which are caused by social interactions. Bioreactions help the brain reinforce certain pathways. This is one way to learn. Some pathways then associate that past reaction with similar events. The fear response may then become associated with other non-fearful events. Because the brain is so good at making these associations, we are not even aware of the miscue.
Bioreactions are automatic responses that happen within 11–14 milliseconds. In most cases, they are not under your control. However, you can learn to become aware of when you are experiencing a bioreaction by paying attention to what is going on in your body.
To become aware of your bioreactions, it may be helpful to ask yourself the following questions:
What event/experience led to the bioreaction?
What emotions did you feel?
How did your body react?
What, if anything, did you do differently when you noticed you were having a bioreaction?
Why is it important for you to be aware of your bioreactions?