Ways To Rewire Your Brain For Meaningful Life Changes
5 Ways To Rewire Your Brain For Meaningful Life Changes 5 Ways To Rewire Your Brain For Meaningful Life Changes
Neuroscientists have discovered the strategy for rewiring the brain. Contrary to popular approaches, this strategy involves more than just positive thinking or working hard.
In fact, there are five pathways that must be activated in order to create new neural networks in the brain. Lets explore a few principles from brain science in order to better understand how to successfully activate these pathways.
First, the act of thinking sets into motion a chemical reaction in the brain that can be likened to plugging in a string of lights. As you think about somethingbe it positive or stressfulyou turn on a string of lights related to that topic.
Second, the more you think, feel and act the same way, the faster the lights turn on and the brighter they glow. Thus, the string of lights related to driving a car at 45 years old is much brighter and faster than the string you had at 16 years old.
1. Identify the beliefs that support your intention.
Seeing is not required for believing. In fact, you have to first believe it is possible if you expect to truly see it manifest in your life.
Solution: Examine your current beliefs about a desired goal. Identify those beliefs that align with the possibility of achieving your intention.
2. Embrace your positive emotions.
4. Take actions that support your intention.
5. Repeat, repeat, repeat.
Recommended Books On Neuroplasticity
If youre interested in learning more and you have more than 20 minutes or so to dedicate to it, you might enjoy one of these books on the subject:
- The Brains Way of Healing: Remarkable Discoveries and Recoveries from the Frontiers of Neuroplasticity by Norman Doidge
- Neuroplasticity by Moheb Costandi
- Switch on Your Brain: The Key to Peak Happiness, Thinking, and Health by Dr. Caroline Leaf
- The Power of Neuroplasticity by Shad Helmstetter
- The Stress-Proof Brain: Master Your Emotional Response to Stress Using Mindfulness & Neuroplasticity by Melanie Greenberg
- The Brain That Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science by Norman Doidge
- My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientists Personal Journey by Jill Bolte Taylor
- The Mind and the Brain: Neuroplasticity and the Power of Mental Force by Jeffrey M. Schwartz and Sharon Begley
- Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself: How to Lose Your Mind and Create a New One by Dr. Joe Dispenza
Before you go, check out these 9 interesting, engaging, and sometimes entertaining quotes about neuroplasticity.
Among other things, neuroplasticity means that emotions such as happiness and compassion can be cultivated in much the same way that a person can learn through repetition to play golf and basketball or master a musical instrument, and that such practice changes the activity and physical aspects of specific brain areas.
Santiago Ramón y Cajal
Studies Reveal You Can Rewire Your Brain With Neuroplasticity For Anxiety
When youre diagnosed with a mental illness, its easy to think that this is it, that this is how youre going to live for the rest of your life. However, new studies have revealed that you can rewire your brain to delete certain connections in the brain to ultimately, change the way your brain works. This is done through a process called neuroplasticity for anxiety.
Also Check: Stroke Bleeding In The Brain Prognosis
How To Rewire Your Brain With Neuroplasticity
First, lets get an idea of some of the ways that neuroplasticity can be applied.
A few of the methods that have been shown to enhance or boost neuroplasticity include:
- Intermittent fasting : increases synaptic adaptation, promotes neuron growth, improve overall cognitive function, and decreases the risk of neurodegenerative disease
- Traveling: exposes your brain to novel stimuli and new environments, opening up new pathways and activity in the brain
- Using mnemonic devices: memory training can enhance connectivity in the prefrontal parietal network and prevent some age-related memory loss
- Learning a musical instrument: may increase connectivity between brain regions and help form new neural networks
- Non-dominant hand exercises: can form new neural pathways and strengthen the connectivity between neurons
- Reading fiction: increases and enhances connectivity in the brain
- Expanding your vocabulary: activates the visual and auditory processes as well as memory processing
- Creating artwork: enhances the connectivity of the brain at rest , which can boost introspection, memory, empathy, attention, and focus
- Dancing: reduces the risk of Alzheimers and increases neural connectivity
- Sleeping: encourages learning retention through the growth of the dendritic spines that act as connections between neurons and help transfer information across cells .
For references on each of these methods, see Thai Nguyens work.
Internal Locus Of Control
It may seem like this would be the easy part. I mean, if you can control a situation, you can shape it in your best interest to create the desired outcome.
Unfortunately, its rarely that simple.
We all know whats good for us
That we should eat healthier, drink less, exercise harder and call our mothers more.
So whys it so hard?
Because our minds are locked in a perpetual battle of competing emotions. In other words, were our own worst enemies.
On the one hand, we have our lizard brain, a primitive part of our cognitive makeup thats primarily satisfied with our survival and meeting basic human needs.
When those conditions are satisfied, our lizard brains content. No more need to struggle.
On the other hand, a more recent addition to our mind apparatus is our pre-frontal cortex, responsible for planning and awareness.
And this is where problems emerge between two parts of our mind with competing agendas.
Our lizard brain, content with short-term thinking and immediate gratification, is balanced by our pre-frontal cortex, which implores us to consider our future selves before scoffing another Mars Bar.
And this is where so many of us struggle. We over-identify with our lizard brain and never consider the future cost we trade for short-term gratification.
At the back of our minds, we know that eating boxes of doughnuts have consequences, but when theyre right in front of us theyre just too sweet and juicy to resist.
So how do we tip the scales in our favour?
Also Check: Fluoride Classified As Neurotoxin
Neuroplasticity Therapy For Adhd Ocd And Autism
The methods of using neuroplasticity to treat ADHD, OCD, and autism largely mirror the methods we have already covered. There are games, activities, and programs designed around the principles of neuroplasticity to help people and children with a wide range of issues and impairments.
However, they all come down to the same general themes: learning new things, being open to new experiences and new activities, consciously adapting and modifying your thought patterns, and using science-backed techniques to challenge yourself.
To learn more about how neuroplasticity can benefit children with ADHD, click here for a description of the Atentiv System.
To get specific information on how neuroplasticity therapy can be applied to OCD, click here.
How To Rewire Your Brain For Positivity The Easy Way
Your brain is your own to rewire however you see fit. So how do you want to rewire your brain and change your thoughts?
Whatever change in thinking you want to make, the easy way to reprogram your brain for positivity is to use the Positive Thinking Tool. It has all the information you just learned baked into it, to ensure that the brain rewiring process is fast, simple, and easy for you.
This means that you dont have to be tormented by negative thoughts that contribute to stress, anxiety, depression, low self confidence, and so on.
Instead, you can rewire your mind to enjoy greater peace of mind, confidence, and happiness in less than five minutes.
With the Positive Thinking Tool:
- You enter a negative thought and rewire your mind to stop thinking it
- You enter a positive thought and rewire your mind to start thinking it
So try the Positive Thinking Tool right now, and rewire your brain to think more positively in 5 minutes or less.
Its how to rewire your brain for positivity the easy way.
Recommended Reading: How To Shrink Brain Tumors Naturally
Rewiring The Brain To Overcome Psychiatric Disorders
From depression to obsessive-compulsive disorder , psychiatric disorders can result from abnormal brain structure, chemistry, and function. These causes can be the result of maladaptive neuroplasticity, so researchers are looking to reverse the effects of this while encouraging adaptive neuroplasticity, both of which can reduce the severity of symptoms. Stimulating this positive plasticity can be a lot of fun and might involve activities such as traveling to new and interesting places, learning a new skill , making art, and even reading fiction.
Deep brain stimulation can also encourage neuroplasticity. The more we understand this circuitry , the more we can fine tune how to harness that capability within an individual and the better well be able to treat patients with mood disorders, said Dr. Sameer Sheth, associate professor of neurosurgery at Baylor College of Medicine and neurosurgeon at Baylor St. Lukes Medical Center.
Our team has extensive experience treating the full spectrum of neurological disorders. Schedule an appointment with a St. Lukes Health neurologist to begin your healthcare journey with Houstons leaders in neuroscience.
How To Reframe A Situation
While this may seem difficult, you have to remember that youre probably changing a lifetime of reactionary impulses to external stimuli.
Were rarely taught the benefits of practical, stoic philosophy in our formative years when we really need it. That means we often have to dispense with an accumulation of bad psychological habits.
Think of it like a mental colonoscopy flushing out our reactionary habits sounds easy, but unlike its messier counterpart, it takes practice to locate our psychological release valve.
But what about when you can control the situation? Like when youre making an important life decision, such as what to eat for breakfast or where to go for your Friday night beverage
Also Check: Eeg Showed Slowing
What Is The Meaning Of Neuroplasticity
Neuroplasticity refers to the brains ability to adapt. Or, as Dr. Campbell puts it:
It refers to the physiological changes in the brain that happen as the result of our interactions with our environment. From the time the brain begins to develop in utero until the day we die, the connections among the cells in our brains reorganize in response to our changing needs. This dynamic process allows us to learn from and adapt to different experiences
Celeste Campbell .
Our brains are truly extraordinary unlike computers, which are built to certain specifications and receive software updates periodically, our brains can actually receive hardware updates in addition to software updates. Different pathways form and fall dormant, are created and are discarded, according to our experiences.
When we learn something new, we create new connections between our neurons. We rewire our brains to adapt to new circumstances. This happens on a daily basis, but its also something that we can encourage and stimulate.
Step : Everyone Is A Work In Progress
Simply become aware that we all become caught in these self-destructive loops or cycles of harmful thoughts or behaviours at different times throughout our lives. Nobody is perfect.And, this is how all of our brains work.
The truth is, whether these harmful patterns relate to eating a bar of chocolate everyday or swigging another whiskey or constantly criticising ourselves. None of us are saints.
We all have patterns of behaviour or indulgences we need to limit or transform.
So whatever it is for you, dont beat yourself up about it. The key is to simply be aware that whatever we do on a constant basis becomes second nature, whether thats in the physical, mental, emotional or spiritual realms of life, it does not matter.
Practice makes us a master of it.
Being aware of this is the very first step in being able to break-free from any self-defeating cycle or self-destructive behaviours.
Its only through this knowledge and understanding of our brain that allows us to use these very natural brain processes to our advantage and transform any area of our lives.
Also Check: Is There Blood In The Brain
How Your Habits Become Wired Into Your Brain
Neuroplasticity Rehabilitation For Stroke Recovery
Neuroplasticity has been observed quite often in those recovering from strokes. Strokes often leave patients with brain damage, ranging from moderate to severe however, we have also seen amazing recovery from stroke patients.
According to the experts at stroke-rehab.com, the best way to encourage neuroplasticity in stroke recovery is to use two key methods:
In other words, learning a new skill or activity through specific, regular practice can result in significant changes in the brain. You may not be able to learn anything with repetition and specific practice, but you can certainly learn a lotand improvements in one area can often spill over into improvements in other abilities and skills.
Say Your Goal Out Loud
Positive affirmations may have a woo-woo reputation, but saying your goals out loud to yourself does actually make you more likely to do them, and it may help increase your sense of self-worth too, according to research .
Dr. Tom Kannon is a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner. He says that when people have undergone brain scans while saying positive affirmations, the brain lights up like a Christmas tree.
Your brain truly wants to believe everything youre saying, he says.
Others Can Keep You Motivated
Weve talked about the importance of commitment over motivation, but youll likely need a little bit of encouragement, at least if you want to keep things going. An accountability buddy will hype you when you need them to and call you out when you start slacking. The friendly competition may help, too!
You May Like: Why Do Brain Freezes Happen
Healing The Brain With Neuroplasticity After Trauma
Research on neuroplasticity has gained in leaps and bounds from observing changes in the brains of those who suffered serious trauma.
Scientists noticed that some patients with severe damage to the brain were able to recover to an amazing degree, given the extent of the damage, and wondered how this was possible as we now know, neuroplasticity is what allows this recovery to happen.
According to researchers Su, Veeravagu, and Grant , there are three phases of neuroplasticity after trauma:
There are many pharmacological treatments currently in development and testing that aim to help recovery through encouraging neuroplasticity, in addition to therapies involving stem cells, modifying gene expression and cellular proliferation, regulating inflammatory reactions, and recruiting immune cells to stop the damage .
How To Work With Subconscious Mind To Develop Positive Habits And Thought Patterns
Now that you know how neuroplasticity works, you know that to rewire your brain, your neurons need to be stimulated via repetition and activity. Generally, this is a slow process, but it can be accelerated by reprogramming your mind.
How does reprogramming your mind help increase neuroplasticity?
Let’s say you want to rewire your brain to make yourself a fitter, healthier person. Changing your brains internal wiring would require you to mimic the thought and habit patterns of a fit, healthy person until it became your second nature.
The problem arises when you arent consistent.
Say that after coming home from the gym, your subconscious decides to reward your workout with a treat, like your favorite ice cream. In your subconscious, this is neither good nor badit is simply trying to ease your pain with pleasure.
By reprogramming your mind, however, a therapist could suggest to your subconscious that working out is an act of self-love and is, therefore, a pleasure and a reward. Eating ice cream, on the other hand, is harmful and counterproductive. After your therapy session, you may discover that you enjoy working out more. You may also notice that you enjoy eating ice cream less .
Once you reprogram your mind, it becomes a lot easier for you to stay consistent with your health and fitness goals.
With discipline and practice, the synapses which encourage positive behavior become stronger. Exercising and eating healthy almost immediately becomes second nature for you.
Don’t Miss: Orli Etingin Married