Sun Stories: Aishah – The Wages of Fear – Chapter 5

“You’re amazing! I’m going to give you a five-star Yelp review!”

“That would be fantastic. But you don’t have to go into too much detail about the level of service you got today, dear.”

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Ambria – Chapter 9 – Take Me To The Garden Part 1

I was working at the office when I got a text from Ambria that she would be at the Independence Beer Garden with some of her co-workers on Friday night. I would be working at the salon until 8:00pm so I told her I could swing by around 8:30.

So I close up shop and head out. It’s really humid and just gross outside. I walk east on Walnut street and figure if I can just get to the other side of Broad street, I’ll head up to Chestnut and see if I can hop on a bus before I melt. I’m walking on 13th street and just as I get to the corner of Drury Street, some crusty homeless guy asks me if I can spare some change and I tell him I don’t have any just like I always do. But as I round the corner onto Chestnut, I see a hot, slender junkie chick, and she asks me the same question.

“I can’t resist a damsel in distress.” And I open my wallet and give her a dollar.

I am a shallow, fickle asshole. She was so grateful and God blessed me and I gently stroked her arm and told her to take care. I can’t resist beauty, even if it is hooked on opiates.

I keep walking east on Chestnut having done my good deed for the day. I look west and see that a bus is coming. I get to the corner and hang at the stop. I dig a token out of my pocket and hop on. The bus is air-conditioned and it’s just what I need to dry out a bit on my way down to the garden.

I get off at 6th street and walk up to Market Street. I enter the beer garden and they card me. Of course at age 55, I’m delighted to be carded. The only place I get carded now is at Rite Aid when buying cigarettes because by law they have to log in your birthday.

The place is pretty busy and there are loads of people around the main bar. It’s a big place. Well, it is Friday night, and normally I never go out on Fridays because it’s amateur night and mostly young people. They’re just noisy, drunk and annoying. It’s almost too hot to be outside at a beer garden. I prefer a nice quiet air-conditioned cocktail bar.

I don’t see her so I walk to the back of the garden because I know in the Southwest corner of the property there is a small bar. It’s like a little shack. I quickly get a Yards Pale Ale and it’s just what I need. I love a cold crisp beer on a hot day. I crush it pretty quickly and text Ambria where I am. I tell her I’m at the bar at the southwest corner of the garden, and she texts me back.

“That means nothing to me.”

It seems like I never date a woman with any sense of direction. But I don’t care, I’m going to order another beer and just chill for the moment. Suddenly this beautiful woman shows up. It’s not Ambria. It’s a woman who looks like she’s in her late twenties or early thirties. What’s unique about her is her hair is blue. But it looks amazing. It matches her dark blue denim skirt. She’s wearing a tight yellow shirt and little ankle sandals. Her legs are spectacular. She seems to be waiting for someone. I’m going to drink my second beer and stay right here. Maybe Ambria will come and look for me.

I get my next ice-cold Yards and it goes down easy, while I drink in the beauty of the woman standing there across the path from me. I swear, If I weren’t here to meet Ambria, I’d go over and talk to her. I swear to God I would connect with that lovely baby. She’s amazingly hot. But I can’t take a chance with Ambria on the property somewhere.

Here’s a pic of the blue haired fox.

I know it’s not a great pic but you can see that she is one fit girl. Her thighs are talking to me. Stacked and packed! Delish!

I decide to go look for Ambria because I’ve been here for twenty minutes and haven’t seen her. I walk back around to the main bar area and walk along the side searching the crowd. I don’t see her. I turn the corner and start walking along the front, when I get this little poke on my back.

 

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Sun Stories: Aishah – The Wages of Fear – Chapter 3

One study indicates that anywhere from 5–7% of the world population is affected by severe claustrophobia, but only a small percentage of these people receive some kind of treatment for the disorder.

Our girl Aishah has severe claustrophobia. Let’s look at the science behind this disorder.

Claustrophobia is the fear of being enclosed in a small space or room and unable to escape. It can be triggered by many situations or stimuli, including elevators crowded to capacity, windowless rooms, small cars and even tight-necked clothing. It is typically classified as an anxiety disorder, which often results in panic attacks. The onset of claustrophobia has been attributed to many factors, including a reduction in the size of the amygdala, classical conditioning, or a genetic predisposition to fear small spaces.

One study indicates that anywhere from 5–7% of the world population is affected by severe claustrophobia, but only a small percentage of these people receive some kind of treatment for the disorder.

The term claustrophobia comes from Latin claustrum “a shut in place” and Greek φόβος, phóbos, “fear”.

Claustrophobia is typically thought to have two key symptoms: fear of restriction and fear of suffocation. A typical claustrophobic will fear restriction in at least one, if not several, of the following areas: small rooms, locked rooms, MRI or CAT scan apparatus, cars, airplanes, trains, tunnels, underwater caves, cellars, elevators and caves. Additionally, the fear of restriction can cause some claustrophobia to fear trivial matters such as sitting in a haircutter’s chair or waiting in line at a grocery store simply out of a fear of confinement to a single space. Another possible site for claustrophobic attacks is a dentist’s chair, particularly during dental surgery; in that scenario, the fear is not of pain, but of being confined.

Often, when confined to an area, claustrophobics begin to fear suffocation, believing that there may be a lack of air in the area to which they are confined.

Claustrophobia is the fear of having no escape, and being closed into a small space. It is typically classified as an anxiety disorder and often times results in a rather severe panic attack. It is also confused sometimes with Cleithrophobia (the fear of being trapped).

The fears of enclosed spaces is an irrational fear. Most claustrophobic people who find themselves in a room without windows consciously know that they aren’t in danger, yet these same people will be afraid, possibly terrified to the point of incapacitation, and many do not know why.

The amygdala is one of the smallest structures in the brain, but also one of the most powerful. The amygdala is needed for the conditioning of fear, or the creation of a fight-or-flight response. A fight-or-flight response is created when a stimulus is associated with a grievous situation. Cheng believes that a phobia’s roots are in this fight-or-flight response.

In generating a fight-or-flight response, the amygdala acts in the following way: The amygdala’s anterior nuclei associated with fear each other. Nuclei send out impulses to other nuclei, which influence respiratory rate, physical arousal, the release of adrenaline, blood pressure, heart rate, behavioral fear response, and defensive responses, which may include freezing up. These reactions constitute an ‘autonomic failure’ in a panic attack.

Amygdala
A study done by Fumi Hayano found that the right amygdala was smaller in patients who suffered from panic disorders. The reduction of size occurred in a structure known as the corticomedial nuclear group which the CE nucleus belongs to. This causes interference, which in turn causes abnormal reactions to aversive stimuli in those with panic disorders. In claustrophobic people, this translates as panicking or overreacting to a situation in which the person finds themselves physically confined.

Classical conditioning

Claustrophobia results as the mind comes to connect confinement with danger. It often comes as a consequence of a traumatic childhood experience, although the onset can come at any point in an individual’s life. Such an experience can occur multiple times, or only once, to make a permanent impression on the mind.[6] The majority of claustrophobic participants in an experiment done by Lars-Göran Öst reported that their phobia had been “acquired as a result of a conditioning experience.” In most cases, claustrophobia seems to be the result of past experiences.

Conditioning experiences

A few examples of common experiences that could result in the onset of claustrophobia in children (or adults) are as follows:

(All equally terrifying)
A child (or, less commonly, an adult) is shut into a pitch-black room and cannot find the door or the light-switch.
A child gets shut into a box.
A child is locked in a closet.
A child falls into a deep pool and cannot swim.
A child gets separated from their parents in a large crowd and gets lost.
A child sticks their head between the bars of a fence and then cannot get back out.
A child crawls into a hole and gets stuck, or cannot find their way back.
A child is left in their parent’s car, truck, or van.
A child is in a crowded area with no windows (a classroom, basement, etc.) and has run-ins with other people, or is put there as a means of punishment.

The term ‘past experiences’, according to one author, can extend to the moment of birth. In John A. Speyrer’s “Claustrophobia and the Fear of Death and Dying”, the reader is brought to the conclusion that claustrophobia’s high frequency is due to birth trauma, about which he says is “one of the most horrendous experiences we can have during our lifetime,” and it is in this helpless moment that the infant develops claustrophobia.

In an MRI, the patient is inserted into the tube.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) can trigger claustrophobia. An MRI scan entails lying still for some time in a narrow tube. In a study involving claustrophobia and MRI, it was reported that 13% of patients experienced a panic attack during the procedure. The procedure has been linked not only to the triggering of ‘preexisting’ claustrophobia, but also to the onset of the condition in some people. Panic attacks experienced during the procedure can stop the person from adjusting to the situation, thereby perpetuating the fear.

Miners in small spaces

The conditions inside a mine
S.J. Rachman tells of an extreme example, citing the experience of 21 miners. These miners were trapped underground for 14 days, during which six of the miners died of suffocation. After their rescue, ten of the miners were studied for ten years. All but one were greatly affected by the experience, and six developed phobias to “confining or limiting situations.” The only miner who did not develop any noticeable symptoms was the one who acted as leader.[11]

Another factor that could cause the onset of claustrophobia is “information received.[7]” As Aureau Walding states in “Causes of Claustrophobia”, many people, especially children, learn who and what to fear by watching parents or peers. This method does not only apply to observing a teacher, but also observing victims. Vicarious classical conditioning also includes when a person sees another person exposed directly to an especially unpleasant situation.[12] This would be analogous to observing someone getting stuck in a tight space, suffocated, or any of the other examples that were listed above.

Prepared phobia

There is research that suggests that claustrophobia isn’t entirely a classically conditioned or learned phobia. It is not necessarily an inborn fear, but it is very likely what is called a prepared phobia. As Erin Gersley says in “Phobias: Causes and Treatments,” humans are genetically predisposed to become afraid of things that are dangerous to them. Claustrophobia may fall under this category because of its “wide distribution… early onset and seeming easy acquisition, and its non-cognitive features.[13]” The acquisition of claustrophobia may be part of a vestigial evolutionary survival mechanism,[5] a dormant fear of entrapment and/or suffocation that was once important for the survival of humanity and could be easily awakened at any time.[14] Hostile environments in the past would have made this kind of pre-programmed fear necessary, and so the human mind developed the capacity for “efficient fear conditioning to certain classes of dangerous stimuli”.

Rachman provides an argument for this theory in his article: “Phobias”. He agrees with the statement that phobias generally concern objects that constitute a direct threat to human survival, and that many of these phobias are quickly acquired because of an “inherited biological preparedness”.[15] This brings about a prepared phobia, which is not quite innate, but is widely and easily learned. As Rachman explains in the article: “The main features of prepared phobias are that they are very easily acquired, selective, stable, biologically significant, and probably [non-cognitive].” ‘Selective’ and ‘biologically significant’ mean that they only relate to things that directly threaten the health, safety, or survival of an individual. ‘Non-cognitive’ suggests that these fears are acquired unconsciously. Both factors point to the theory that claustrophobia is a prepared phobia that is already pre-programmed into the mind of a human being.

Separating the fear of restriction and fear of suffocation[edit]

Many experts who have studied claustrophobia claim that it consists of two separable components: fear of suffocation and fear of restriction. In an effort to fully prove this assertion, a study was conducted by three experts in order to clearly prove a difference. The study was conducted by issuing a questionnaire to 78 patients who received MRIs.

The data was compiled into a “fear scale” of sorts with separate subscales for suffocation and confinement. Theoretically, these subscales would be different if the contributing factors are indeed separate. The study was successful in proving that the symptoms are separate. Therefore, according to this study, in order to effectively combat claustrophobia, it is necessary to attack both of these underlying causes.

However, because this study only applied to people who were able to finish their MRI, those who were unable to complete the MRI were not included in the study. It is likely that many of these people dropped out because of a severe case of claustrophobia. Therefore, the absence of those who suffer the most from claustrophobia could have skewed these statistics.

A group of students attending the University of Texas at Austin were first given an initial diagnostic and then given a score between 1 and 5 based on their potential to have claustrophobia. Those who scored a 3 or higher were used in the study. The students were then asked how well they felt they could cope if forced to stay in a small chamber for an extended period of time. Concerns expressed in the questions asked were separated into suffocation concerns and entrapment concerns in order to distinguish between the two perceived causes of claustrophobia. The results of this study showed that the majority of students feared entrapment far more than suffocation. Because of this difference in type of fear, it can yet again be asserted that there is a clear difference in these two symptoms.

Cognitive therapy

Cognitive therapy is a widely accepted form of treatment for most anxiety disorders.[16] It is also thought to be particularly effective in combating disorders where the patient doesn’t actually fear a situation but, rather, fears what could result from being in such a situation.[16] The ultimate goal of cognitive therapy is to modify distorted thoughts or misconceptions associated with whatever is being feared; the theory is that modifying these thoughts will decrease anxiety and avoidance of certain situations.[16] For example, cognitive therapy would attempt to convince a claustrophobic patient that elevators are not dangerous but are, in fact, very useful in getting you where you would like to go faster. A study conducted by S.J. Rachman shows that cognitive therapy decreased fear and negative thoughts/connotations by an average of around 30% in claustrophobic patients tested, proving it to be a reasonably effective method.

 

 

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Sun Stories: Aishah – The Wages of Fear – Chapter 2

A few days go by and once again lovely Aishah returns. Of course I remember her name and I greet her and make a fuss over her. I ask her how school is going and what’s up for the holiday. She says she’s going home to see her folks in North Jersey then off to Costa Rica for the winter break.

I send her to the Cadillac in room 6 this time. Let’s see what happens this time.

A few minutes pass and the bed lid squeaks closed. The bulbs light and her session had begun. I’m doing my thing around the salon and I’m coming out from the back room with some towels when I hear the familiar squeak of the hood on the Caddy, (We call it the Cadillac because when it’s closed it looks like the front of an old Caddy.

OPEN

CLOSED

The bed must be open or at least partially for that much light to stream forth from the room. I decide to ask her if everything’s okay with the unit when she comes out.

A few minutes later and hot Aishah appears. She’s waving goodbye and I motion her over. I gotta find out what’s going on.

“Aishah, got a sec?”

She nods smiling, she approaches. “Yea. What’s up?”

“I noticed when you’re in tanning during your session, a lot of light is coming out of the room. It’s as if the hood of the bed is open. Do you have any questions about the machines?”

I see a nervous fear wash across her lovely visage. She takes a deep breath and drops her gaze to the floor.

“You alright?”

Aishah looks back up at me. “I’m so embarrassed. You’re going to think I’m crazy. It’s so silly.”

“We’re all professionals here. Whatever is happening I’m sure I can help. What’s up?”

“Okay. Here goes… I have really bad claustrophobia. Like… really bad.”

“Okay. That’s more common than you’d think. Please don’t be embarrassed about it, dear.”

“It’s just an awful feeling. Like, I know I really need to tan, so I go in and breathe and lie on the bed and just wait. I try to stay calm. The bulbs come on, and I slowly close the lid. I try to just chill and breathe. I try to think of anything else, but in a few minutes I start to really panic. Like trembling with fear. I have to push the hood up immediately just so I can breathe.”

“Oh my God, I’m so sorry Aishah. That’s why you don’t do the stand up units.”

“Oh no! That’s an even smaller space. I could never. I’d run out of the room.”

“Well between now and the next time you come in maybe we can think of some ideas to get you tan and not scare the hell out of you in doing so!”

“That would be nice. I’ll try to come up with something as well. I’m so claustrophobic I don’t even like how I feel when I close and lock the doors on the room. It’s like I’m locked in a tiny room and then in a box with the lid closed. It feels like I’m being buried alive in a crypt.”

“Holy shit. That is scary!”

“Yea, it really is. If I ever had to go into one of those MRI machines I’d jump out a window! But I do feel better talking to you about it though. (takes my hand in hers) I really appreciate you taking the time to ask me if I was okay. That really means a lot to me.”

“Yea. Don’t worry. We’ll come up with something to help make you feel better.”

“Okay. Well until next time. (She smiles weakly and walks out the door.)

 

This poor girl. I never thought about it before but that’s a new one for me. I’ve heard people say that they do get a little claustrophobic in the stand ups. But not this bad where some one is literally having a panic attack. I kind of like cozy places. Probably because of my anxiety and depression. To be in a small womb like space. It always feels safer to me. Just the opposite for poor Aishah. She feels trapped like a frightened animal in a cage.

We’ll figure something out. We always do. I need to do some research.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day at 8am &12pm EST.

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6 Reasons Why Women Are Hardwired To Be Leaders

The Neuroscience Why The Female Brain Is Best Suited For Positions of Power…

“Leadership is about empathy. It is about having the ability to relate to and connect with people for the purpose of inspiring and empowering their lives.” — Oprah Winfrey


 

The female brain is wired for leadership, making complex decisions, empathy, and collaboration.

Nature’s default is female — we all start with an X chromosome.

If you are the lucky recipient of another X chromosome (thus making you female), you will continue to develop neurons with the Jedi-like ability to read faces, communication, and language.

If you receive a Y chromosome (making you male), testosterone will shunt this process, instead focusing on growing areas in the brain for aggression and sexual drive.

The female brain, as you will see from some key gender dimorphism I discuss here, is designed to be in positions of power.

Of course, this is NOT to say men should not be in positions of power.

But when you look at the beautiful nuances in the female brain, and how she is uniquely qualified to lead with compassion, grace, and arguably a better executive decision maker, it begs the question…

Why are more women NOT in positions of power?

Let’s take a look at the 6 unique aspects of the female brain and why she’s neurologically wired for leadership positions…


1. The SheEO: aka the Prefrontal Cortex

“It would be futile to attempt to fit women into a masculine pattern of attitudes, skills and abilities and disastrous to force them to suppress their specifically female characteristics and abilities by keeping up the pretense that there are no differences between the sexes.” — Arianna Huffington

The prefrontal cortex is involved in cognition, and decision-making.

The prefrontal cortex is the queen mother and is responsible for planning the future, personality, expression, decision-making and moderating social behavior.

It is the executive function, the CEO, nay, the SheEO, of the brain.

The prefrontal cortex is larger and matures faster in women than in men.

Developmentally, the prefrontal cortex is larger and develops faster in females.

Why is this?

One of the prevalent theories is the influence of estrogen, the predominant hormone in the female brain, which strongly stimulates the faster development and maintenance of the female prefrontal cortex.

In her book, The Female Brain, Dr. Louann Brizendine, points out that this gender difference start before birth: female brains are “marinated” in utero with estrogen hormones, while male brains with testosterone.

If you are a woman you can relate to this — we often see females, both in their school years and in the work place, taking the initiative to complete tasks and assignments ahead of deadlines.

The frontal lobe, in particular the right prefrontal cortex, is involved with thinking about the future.

Getting the project done ahead of schedule is a higher order, future-paced activity.

When I first learned this, it was an a-ha moment for me.

I would do this constantly –do my work early and have loads of extra time to over study for exams.

If a project was due in a month, I would get on it straight away, have boat loads of time to look it over, and 10 times out of 10 hand it in early.

Another reason to explain this behavioural difference (early keener vs last-minute) that may co-exist with a larger prefrontal cortex may have something to do with the differences in our serotonin receptors.

I have written previously on the decreased serotonin receptors in females compared to their male counterparts.

We naturally have less dopamine to motivate us for follow through on a tight deadline.

I talked about men being more dopaminergic than women.

Meaning, they are less reliant on their environment, and can stay motivated and engaged in a task longer to finish it to completion.

Getting the task done ahead of time alleviates any stress response the female might have about the pressure of the deadline.

We see the opposite behaviour in men. Men will often wait until the last-minute so that they utilize neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine to push them to finish.

Sound familiar?


2. Temper Tantrum Center: Smaller Amygdala

“Don’t ever make decisions based on fear. Make decisions based on hope and possibility. Make decisions based on what should happen, not what shouldn’t.”

— Michelle Obama

One of the main roles of the higher brain centers like the frontal lobe is to inhibit lower areas of the brain, in particular, the temporal lobe, where the amygdala lives.

The amygdala is involved in emotions, aggression, and anger. This is often referred to as our primitive, instinctual brain.

The amygdala, located in the temporal lobe is larger in men.

Neuroscientists have confirmed there are a greater number of testosterone receptors and other look alike (collectively called androgens) present in the amygdala.

This is where the female brain is beautifully nuanced for leadership.

Being able to keep her cool, and continue to problem solve…that’s the making of a world leader.


3. Better Impulse Control : The Anterior Cingulate Cortex

“Mature workers are less impulsive, less reactive, more creative, and more centered” — Deepak Chopra

Women have a bigger anterior cingulate cortex, which is involved in impulse control, decision making, guiding behavioural outcomes, and even choosing sexual partners (study alert: females tend to choose the less risky, more stable partners).

Neuroscientists have long reported the increased prevalence of ADHD, impulsivity, violence and aggression occurring much more frequently in males than females.

This may be in part to the anatomically smaller anterior cingulate cortex in males, versus females.

Again, in the context of leadership, this is an advantage of the female brain.

In high pressure situations, appropriating impulsive thoughts and emotions, while still being able to think about the best solutions is important.

Interestingly, the original function of the anterior cinguate cortex was thought to be in the protection of our young — to reduce risk so that we could ensure their survival.

What this often translates to in an adult women is conservative over risky behaviour.


4. The Way We Connect :The Corpus Callosum

“If your actions create a legacy that inspires others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, then, you are an excellent leader.” — Dolly Parton

Herein lies one of the more prominent differences between us.

The male brain has more neurons than the female, BUT less connections between those neurons.

This is what neuroscientists call an intrahemispheric brain.

In other words, he tends to be more single focused, task-oriented, and mechanistic.

He tends to stay more in his left brain.

The male is able to raise his own levels of dopamine, going about his business, with less of a reliance on his external environment.

Males are typically systematizers.

The female brain has less neurons overall than her male counterparts BUT has more connections between them.

She tends to stay more in her right brain, being able to empathize and connect with others and create community.

Females are typically empathizers.

Women have what neuroscientists call an interhemispheric brain.

Meaning, the female is more efficient with her neuronal connections, and uses more areas of her brain across the cortices.

She does this through connection of the superhighway in the brain called the corpus callosum. This allows her, with speed and accuracy, to engage more parts of her brain.


5. A Women’s Intuition Is An Actual Place In The Brain: The Insula

“To call woman the weaker sex is a libel; it is man’s injustice to woman. If by strength is meant brute strength, then, indeed, is woman less brute than man. If by strength is meant moral power, then woman is immeasurably man’s superior. Has she not greater intuition, is she not more self-sacrificing, has she not greater powers of endurance, has she not greater courage? Without her, man could not be. If nonviolence is the law of our being, the future is with woman. Who can make a more effective appeal to the heart than woman?” — Mahatma Gandhi

The insula is intimately involved in empathy, emotional awareness, and the interface where the interpretation of “gut feelings” take place.

Whenever you meet someone, or to use the expression — “go with your gut” — it is the insula where the signals from the microbiota, or “gut feelings”, are processed.

The insula is larger and more active in females.

Again, this is mainly because the female brain is under the strong influence of estrogen.

This allows the female, with stealth-like accuracy, to develop better facial recognition, better communication skills, and expression of emotion.

Coupled with a larger insula, she is better able to process her environment, the emotions and psychological states of others, and read between the lines.


6. The Elephant Memory: Hippocampus

“A good memory is one of the most precious assets of the spiritual living” — Max Anders

Ever been in an argument with a woman, let’s say about what was said in a past conversation, and she can recall every single detail of what was said, how it was said, what the temperature outside was, how many birds were chirping, what the color of her nails were, and what you were wearing?

That’s because her hippocampus, the area of the brain where memories are formed, is larger and more active than in the male.

What is cool about the hippocampus is it is estrogen sensitive (specifically estradiol), and as such, has regulatory effects on her learning and memory.

The hippocampus can also act by retrieving memories, and relays these memories to the auditory cortex, which will translate the memories into words.

Oh, I should also mention the auditory cortex, where learning, hearing and language centers are located, are 11% larger in females, too.


So Why Is The Future Female?

“Who Run The World? Girls.” — Beyoncé

In Dr. Daniel Amen’s book “Unleash the Power of the Female Brain”, he suggests women are neurologically wired for success.

Through his research Dr. Amen has identified five particular strengths of women that play a key role in leadership:

  • Empathy
  • Collaboration
  • Intuition
  • Self Control
  • Appropriate Worry

We do this through the unique ways we, as women, are different.

Through our prefrontal cortex, we easily and effortlessly plan ahead, strongly inhibit anger and aggression, learn new information, and develop executive communication styles.

Women will also use their strong language skills to develop consensus and collaboration among peers (particularly other females) more efficiently than men, and our language will lend to being able to navigate through sensitive negotiations.

We have more interconnectedness and communication across the Corpus Callosum, meaning we are more efficient and use more areas of our brain for tasks.

We have superior impulse control, and better inhibition of aggression centers in the brain, while still able to solve difficult problems.

We have a better sense of we and others feel, through our larger and more active insula, which is the area our gut feelings are processed.

Now all this to say, this is NOT to say men are not qualified to be in positions in leadership.

Of course they are.

It is quite different statement to say “men are not qualified” versus “females are uniquely qualified”.

The female brain, is uniquely gifted, given her gender dimorphism, to lead with empathy, intuition, instilling collaboration, and self-control.

This all lends to the suggestion that women are wired to be professionals, and hold positions of power.

It is a neurological explanation for why we need more women, with their unique neurological differences in positions of power.

 


 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day at 8am & 12pm EST.

 

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Sun Stories: Jill – Trish’s Replacement – Whoops!

It’s the Tuesday morning after the whole Saturday catastrophe. What was supposed to be Trish’s last day turned into me having to work her whole shift because she got locked up for cocaine possession.

I’m working at my desk when the phone rings. It’s Achilles. I’m thinking, what now?

He tells me he checked online about activity at the salon and there wasn’t any. It’s 11am. Normally he works during the day, but he asked Jill to take his shift this morning because he had some things he needed to do. He goes on to tell me that he called the salon and that there was no answer, and then he called Jill and asked her what was going on.

Her response was, “I’m looking for a place to live.”

Here we go again.

I spring into action and head to the salon. Looks like I’ll be working from whenever I can get the place open to closing today.

On the way there I’m thinking, if Trish had been able to contact Achilles or myself Saturday morning and said she couldn’t work we would have been fine with it. But she was in jail and probably didn’t have her phone on her. Don’t you get one phone call when you’re arrested? If she had gotten one call, that’s the one call she should have made. We wouldn’t have even cared if she had murdered somebody. Just let us know you can’t come in so we can cover your shift.

I wonder what happened with Jill? Couldn’t she have simply called or texted Achilles or myself that she wouldn’t be able to work today? We wouldn’t care if she was homeless, or even if she had murdered somebody. Just call or text Achilles or myself so we can cover your shift! This is the second incidence of this in the last three days!

I get to the salon and open the doors. There are several women sitting on the steps just like on Saturday. I tell them we’ve had some staffing challenges lately. I apologize for the late opening and tell them I’ll take care of them all and everybody gets to tan right now. Our clients for the most part are all really nice people.

I later find out from Achilles that Jill had gone out and gotten blackout drunk Monday night and was kicked out of the halfway house she was living in. So she’s relapsed with her alcoholism.

You are typically kicked out of a sober house when you relapse; but that doesn’t mean you can’t come back to the house or live in another one. If you’ve relapsed, then living in a halfway house is exactly what you need for your recovery right now. If you want to achieve sobriety, go to a halfway house and make a commitment there and don’t leave until you’ve finished it and are sober!

If you or a loved one are struggling with substance abuse or addiction, please call toll-free 1-800-951-6135.

Poor Jill. She was doing such a good job at the salon. I hope she gets the professional help she needs to be okay.

But… If you don’t show up for work, we have to fire you. So Jill has gone the way of Trish. Now we have to find someone else.

But the story isn’t over yet…

 

 

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Sun Stories: Jill – Trish’s Replacement – Hired

Trish lasted almost a year here at the salon. But she’s so unstable she can’t do the job anymore. I hope she gets the professional help she needs to deal with her mental psychosis.

We end up hiring Jill to work at the salon. At this point Achilles doesn’t know about the incident with Trish. Jill has industry experience and catches on quickly and is happy to have a job. She’s sweet to the customers and is up for any task in the salon. Being a former client, she’s happy to now enjoy the benefits of free tanning!

I really get to know her and she seems to have had a difficult life based on some bad decisions. I also discover that she’s had some real problems with alcohol. She’s currently living in a halfway house with some other women in recovery. I don’t know what she did to get there but at least she’s trying to get better.

Halfway Houses are transitional living places for those in recovery from drugs or alcohol. In some states, because of legal requirements, the term “sober living house” is used. Some people go to halfway houses from a treatment center, prison, or a homeless situation, while others go there to be in a sober and clean environment to begin the recovery process. Some residents are in halfway houses due to court orders.

Most halfway houses require residents to pass breathalyzer and drug screening tests as they aren’t equipped to deal with withdrawal symptoms from drugs or the DT’s (Delirium tremens, which are associated with severe alcohol withdrawal). If you can’t pass these tests, a treatment center might be your best option.

 

How a Halfway House is Managed

Many halfway houses are run by people who themselves were at one time a halfway house resident. The houses accommodate either men or women.

Most people who don’t seek recovery from alcohol or drugs will end up on “skid row,” in jail, an insane asylum, or dead. If you are concerned about a friend or family member, an intervention can be the best help for them if they’re not yet in recovery. The good news is that 85% of interventions that are properly carried out result in the person seeking some kind of help. Most interventions carried out without help from people well versed in addiction fail.

 

Determining the Primary Addiction

In seeking recovery from drugs or alcohol, it is important to identify which is the primary addiction — alcohol or drugs. Due to economics, halfway houses are set up to house both alcoholics and drug addicts. In order to obtain optimal results, the person in recovery should focus on either the program of Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous, depending on what the primary addiction is. A person who is addicted to alcohol will relate better to AA and the person addicted primarily to drugs will relate better to fellow drug addicts.

 

How to Choose a Halfway House

In choosing a Halfway House, ask around local AA or NA meetings about those with good reputations, or check with a respected treatment center. Also, choose one that is reasonably near the meetings you will be attending. Most halfway houses accommodate residents until 6 months to a year or two of continuous sobriety or clean time. Houses that have a range or recovery time for people currently residing at the house, such as someone with one month, 90 days, and 6 months are preferable to one with all residents with under 30 days in recovery. Also, those with a live-in manager are generally better choices. Some houses have a democratic process, in which the residents choose who will be coordinator or manager.

I hope everything works out with Jill on our team!

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish everyday at 8am  & 12pm EST.

Instagram: @phicklephilly        Facebook: phicklephilly   Twitter: @phicklephilly