Parenting Your Brain

How to Stop Doing What You’re Doing If It’s Doing No Good!

We have all done and things that we know are not in our best interest. “I just couldn’t help myself,” is a worn plea I frequently hear from new clients.  They come to me with stories of regret, stories or frustration, stories of stories gone badly, and stories of behavior that brought them pain.  Broken relationships, lost jobs, panic attacks, slides back into the addiction  – and so these circles of life seem to eternally repeat for those who have not learned the skills necessary to be the master of their choices.

For those people the decision to finally sit face-to-face with a therapist or coach is a brave last and desperate attempt to make changes, to choose better decisions, and experience a happier successful life.  And finally, in a pro-active therapeutic relationship, they are given the chance to learn a fundamental key to success.

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My clients learn how to care for and parent the one organ in their body that is amazingly complex and equally simple  – their brain.  Every organ in your body has a job, your heart pumps blood, your stomach digests food, and your brain’s job is to create thoughts to protect you.

The thoughts your brain creates to protect you are based on the information that has been input since your birth.  Much like a software program that has been built on a set of rules and fixed strings of code, so too your brain will run it’s programs based on the information it has accumulated throughout your history.   Would you expect a computer program built in the 70s or 80s to effectively run on your computer today? For best results you would install updates or the latest version.  So too we must update and re-program the software in our brain to give us satisfactory results in today’s world.

Relatively recent research in the area of neuroplasticity has shown us we can re-program our brains.  Like most skills it can be learned, and a talented therapist can teach you these skills. It’s almost like parenting your brain.

Imagining and clearly articulating the kind of choices you wish to be able to make on a regular basis, and giving some serious thought to the kind of person you would like others to see you as, is an excellent start.  At the same time start considering your brain as a well-meaning, but stubborn child, who may not always know best.  It is trying to protect you, based on its old programing, so be thankful, and don’t beat yourself up any more then you would beat a child for unknowingly misbehaving.  If you want to effect change, it is easier of the two of you are getting along!

Armed with this knowledge seek out a therapist who understands neuroplasticity and who you consider a wise and compassionate teacher.  Good therapy is journey of learning to be a better and happier person.  Learning how to lovingly parent your brain is a fundamental skill you need to create the life of your choosing.

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