Think of something that you know you shouldn’t do, but you just keep doing it. Having the same fight with your partner. Overspending every time you go to Lowes. Lecturing your daughter when all she wants is for you to listen.
Or think of someone else you know who is really smart and capable and lovely, but just keeps doing something stupid that’s really perplexing. Dating an idiot who cheats on her. Over-promising and under-delivering at work. Lying when it would be easier to tell the truth.
Thanks to more and more research in the field of neuroscience, we are beginning to unravel the reasons smart people don’t change, and finding effective ways to deal with it.
Here is what it boils down to: intelligence does not reside only in your head. It’s also distributed throughout your body via your peripheral nervous system.
In fact, you have a HEART BRAIN which has its own intrinsic nervous system. The heart assesses safety and danger. It assesses the level of connection with others. It even forms and stores memories. Consider this: Heart transplant recipients don’t just receive a new blood pump…the heart brain and its “personality” and memories go with it. Recipients have experienced wild new desires (like riding motorcycles, or hunting), that their donors enjoyed, and they can have vivid recurring dreams and memories that aren’t theirs but that come from their heart donors’ intense experiences.
We all listen to our hearts when we “think” about love. Your heart brain is actually sending information to the brain in your head. When you are struck speechless by someone’s beauty or courage, it’s your brain fumbling the ball. Your neocortex can’t find the words to express what the heart knows.
Likewise, and even more importantly, you have a GUT BRAIN. It is the complexity and is the equivalent size of a cat’s brain.
The gut has its own nervous system that acts largely independently of the brain; the gut “thinks for itself.” No other part of the nervous system can do this.
The gut influences the brain in the head far more than vice versa. It can learn, form memories, take on new behaviors and grow new neurons. So when your stomach starts to churn in the face of danger, or it flutters when you’re excited, those sensations are indications of its intelligence.
Think of the times when you just had a gut reaction, or followed your gut instincts…Long before neuroscientists could study the gut brain, we all knew it existed.
CONCLUSION OF ALL OF THIS:
Two-thirds of your triune brain (the limbic system and brain stem), the right hemisphere, and the whole peripheral nervous system are devoted to non-verbal, non-rational, non-analytical body-based processes. Your body has its own intelligence, and it has nothing to do with the functions of the brain in your head.
So if something is keeping you stuck, and traditional “understanding of the problem” isn’t changing anything, then the best way out is through your body.
I’m offering a workshop on January 19, that will provide you the means for making that shift at the level of your neural pathways. That’s why it has the tongue-in-cheek title of "Total Transformation in Three Hours."
Register here, or click here for more information. I hope to see you there!