Neuroplasticity of the brain: Reshape your thinking so you can deal with the stress of the pandemic.
Have you ever found yourself thinking repeatedly something dangerous like “I’m so finished with this stress, I wish I was dead” or “I’m so stressed about the pandemic, I should just go get the virus and get it over with! Dead or recovered at least the slow agony is over with”! Here’s what you need to know…
What you think about repeatedly is what you will get more of.
The type of language a persons uses and the things we think and do, have the potential to create neuron connections and pathways in the brain that support those same type of thinking patterns. The more you dwell on a thought or repeat an action or sensory memory, the more you will experience that thought.
Brain cells create more connections in the same area of the brain
When we think a thought, brain cells are activated in the brain, our DNA works to produce or extend further dendrites that are the connectors of the cell. Those dendrites connect with other ones to produce a network that spans the whole brain.
The example of a musician
That’s how musicians become great through practice, which wires the brain. Soon the connections are rapid because the network is complex and strong, as the musician perfects their talent.
Here’s another for instance. When we say we are stressed and we have a sudsy bath with a fragrant candle or bath salts, we have wired a sensory memory to that feeling of being stressed and relieving it. So later on, whenever we smell that candle when stressed, we are reminded of that relaxing bath, because a pathway has been established in the memory linking the stress to relief. This activity using the senses, we refer to them as neuro-fitness activities.
Habits hard to break
Do you ever notice when we say things to ourselves or think a certain way, that it becomes a habit or pattern? After awhile this pattern is so deeply entrenched in the memory network of the brain, that it’s hard to break it.
Neuroplasticity of the brain
There is a science called the neuroplasticity of the brain, which explains this mechanism. If we understand it, then we can use it to learn about the mental habits that keep us stuck and inhibit us from fully inhabiting our lives.
Our thoughts and the stories we tell ourselves have the power to shape our reality. If we have a strong belief that the world is out to get us, then we change the things we do in order to feel safe. And this affects our reality.
We can become depressed chemically. How so?
When we panic or say something stressful to ourselves, we use the primal part of the brain in a fight or flight response. Stress hormones are released from the body which affects organs like the stomach or adrenal cortex, pituitary etc.
The second brain
The stomach is called the second brain. We actually have neurons in the stomach responsible for 95% of the production of neurotransmitters needed by the cerebral brain to function. When the stomach to cerebral brain system is out of sorts, chemical imbalances can occur. This is a small example or explanation and it’s so much more complex than this.
Science calls it Neuroplasticity of the brain which is a fancy way of saying that the brain has the ability to change how it functions. If you do or think about things long enough, new connections are formed in different parts of the brain, memories are formed and patterns are reinforced.
That’s how you learn.
First, it becomes a value or belief… then your pattern… and then your reality.
Do you want to learn more about changing limited beliefs? Read on…
You can work with the science of neuroplasticity of the mind to reshape the brain and how it neurologically, physiologically and psychologically functions.
Beliefs affect our reality
As stated before, reality is affects by our thinking patterns, which begin with a belief. Beliefs accumulate over a life time of experiences.
Change only happens when we can confront and examine the mental habits and patterns that keep us locked in negativity. Starting to get to know oneself by examining our values, morals, principles, ethics, and beliefs is a good place to start. Challenging inner negative thoughts is a start.
The only way to begin to retrain the brain is to get to the beliefs and thoughts, to understand where they come from. Learn the whys and how’s that you got to the way you think now. If we confront and examine reality and our thoughts that keep us stuck, we grow to a place of self acceptance. We can observe what limiting beliefs we have and where they started from. We can learn how others have influenced us and get down to our beliefs and opinions, sorting them out from the projections and judgements of others.
We can do this using a thought audit technique. Ask me about this if you have read this far.
When we can understand that it isn’t a failure that we have habits because of thoughts over years of experiences, then we reach a place of acceptance and we stop blame, shame, guilt-beating ourselves.
After that, we can release the old energies that have been locked in the neuropathways of the brain with constant use. By the active confrontation and examination of our inner heart, and learning to change our point of view, then we have re-wired the brain and learned to respond to challenges rather than react through the primal part of the brain, the amygdalae. The more we use our smarts part of the brain, the dendrites shrink in the neuropathways supporting our negative thoughts.
Reticular Activation System
After release, we begin to enquire as to what we really want to think and experience in life. Once you know that, your brain has something called a reticular activating system that will filter what you think about because it will begin to search out the experiences and thoughts you want to experience more of. It’s called the RAS. Neuroplasticity of the mind is real and down to earth logical.
Invest in the science
It’s worth an investment to understand the science and the data behind it if you are an analytical type. Or the big picture if you are an innovator.
The science is real and practical. It will help you to achieve your visions and give you the peace of mind you are on a quest to reach.
It will change how you connect with other people in a heartfelt manner. But it will keep you from hijacking your own agenda to meet others social needs.
It will help you understand how you got into a loop of people pleasing and chasing the things not congruent with your code of beliefs and values, moral and ethics and principles.
The data behind this statement?
The brain actually creates connections, as dendrites of neurons extend to create more networks that support repeated thoughts. Getting out of the primitive brain and reestablishing logical thought patterns using the cerebral cortex will be what gets you out of panic. You will stop beating yourself up and believe in yourself and ability to thrive rather than just survive. You can arrest those damaging thought that put you into panic.
Worrying about Covid19
Yes it’s normal to be concerned about the pandemic. Dwelling on the news about it all day long can cause stress and when we are living in the primal part of the brain, everything else is affected too. Our reality is being shaped.
So get into a more creative part of your brain and focus on what you can do to enjoy life, rather than on what you are missing out on. You can decrease stress that keeps you locked in your primal brain, which reinforces worrying. So be open to considering reducing stress.
Get out of fight or flight thinking
Perhaps don’t listen to blaring music with negative thoughts, gossiping about others, watching horror movies or stuff that influences the primal part of the brain. Get out in the fresh air and revitalize your senses, which also Re-wires the brain. Take up hobbies. Be creative.
Relieve the tension and stress
This science can not only transform the brain but it can help get you through the stress of today’s pandemic.