Can Brain Science Really Make You Happier, Wealthier and More Successful?The last 12 years in the neuroscience field has been one of amazement and enlightenment as scientists discover many new amazing facts that are changing the way we think about ourselves, our abilities and our miraculous brain.
One of the greatest discoveries is that we are not “Hardwired” as once thought. Our brain is actually highly pliable and moldable making millions of new connections daily. These new connections become our references, beliefs and habits that drive our behaviors.
Many scientists refer to this as Neuroplasticity as the “Discovery of the Decade”.
It was once thought that once we grow up, our brains have a set number of neurons performing functions in a fixed way. According to the theory of neuroplasticity or brain plasticity, thinking, learning, and acting actually changes both the brain’s functional anatomy from top to bottom, and its physical anatomy.
A study in 2000 discovered that London taxi drivers have a larger hippocampus, a brain structure known to be heavily involved in learning routes and spatial representations, than London bus drivers. The study found that the size of the hippocampus correlated with the length of time being a taxi driver, suggesting that driving taxis may develop and change the hippocampus. The reason is believed to be that a taxi driver’s environment is constantly changing with more and more sensory input than fellow bus drivers, whose routes were for the most part mundane and routine.
Understanding of brain plasticity has its roots in animal brain research conducted in the 1950s, which was designed to investigate whether the environment had any effect on the structure and function of the animal brain. Researchers designed a study of rodents raised in two distinct environments: enriched and un-enriched. The animals raised in un-enriched environments were kept in isolation and had no running wheels or toys to play with. When the two groups of rodents were compared following autopsy, results yielded significant differences in their brains. The rodents raised in an enriched environment had a larger cortex, more cellular connections (synapses that lead to brain reserve), and the formation of new brain cells (neurogenesis) in the hippocampus (the structure critical to new learning and memory).
The Plasticity of the Human BrainAnother study recently showed that extensive learning of abstract information can also trigger changes in the brain. They took brain scan images of the brains of German medical students three months before their medical exam and right after the exam and compared them to brains of students who were not studying for an exam at this time. Medical students’ brains showed learning-induced changes in regions of the parietal cortex as well as in the posterior hippocampus. These regions of the brains are known to be involved in memory retrieval and learning.
Even basic thinking can change the brain! One experiment with Dr Richard Davidson involved a group of eight Buddhist monk adepts and ten volunteers who had been trained in meditation for one week. All the people tested were told to meditate on compassion and love. Two of the controls, and all of the monks, experienced an increase in the number of gamma waves in their brain during meditation. However, as soon as they stopped meditating, the volunteers’ gamma wave production returned to normal, while the monks, who had meditated on compassion for more than 10,000 hours in order to attain the rank of adept, did not experience a decrease to normal in the gamma wave production after they stopped meditating. The synchronized gamma wave area of the monks’ brains during meditation on love and compassion was found to be larger than that corresponding activation of the volunteers’ brains.
Use It or Lose ItInnercising or stimulating your brain daily is highly recommended as part of a brain-healthy plan of action especially if you want to ascertain new beliefs and habits around your health, happiness or earning more income or even growing a business.. Specific Brain enhancement Innercises has an impact on brain health and success thanks to the brain’s ability to change and be molded like clay.
When you stimulate your brain through new or unfamiliar activities, you can trigger changes in the brain, such as an increase of connections between neurons. The new neuron connections become your new ideas, thoughts and internal map of reality. When you change your familiar “internal” map, the outer world seems to magically change to match.
It now seems to be more true that ever that when you deliberately change your brain, you can actually transform your results and life.
The following techniques are just a few of the proven methodologies to retrain your brain:
Meditation, Visualization, Mindful Self Talk, Guided, Self-hypnosis, subliminal programming, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Cognitive Priming
Here is some good news and some challenging news:
The Challenging News:
- Your brain is designed to protect you from harm and doesn’t like change.
- Conscious and unconscious fears are responded to swiftly with a flight, freeze or fight response (this is both good and challenging depending on the reality of the circumstance )
- Unless challenged on an ongoing basis, your brain will do just what it is currently programmed to think and do and nothing more.
- If you don’t use it… you’ll lose it. Basically the lazier you are, the lazier it is.
The Good News:
- Your brain is able to grow new connections, beliefs, and habits while performing at higher levels.
- Your brain is your servant and requires your guidance in what you want it to do
- Your brain can and does perform the most complicated tasks at an unconscious level
- You can retrain your brain to keep you happier, healthier and wealthier.
- You are never too old to take control of your brain and make it more powerful.