Healing Arts Report

Practices for an Evolving Life

They Don't Tell You How

“You need to love yourself more.” “You shouldn’t feel that way.” “Always put other people first. Don’t be selfish.” The one thing that is missing from all this good advice is telling you HOW to do it. We introduce you to practical tools using your own character traits to support you in creating practical answers to those questions. Read more here.

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Two memoirs tell about times of extreme personal growth in the author’s life. Sunny Side Up is a window into the early 70s when certain young adults were searching for a way to head off society’s path bent on materialism. The Transparent Feather tells of a dying author passing the torch of writing to her new friend cum student.

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You can love yourself and other people as well. At Healing Arts Report we explore fulfilling personal development that at the same time serves to create the shift to a peaceful new world paradigm.

“The privilege of a lifetime is to become who you truly are.” ―C.G. Jung

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Retraining The Brain

Despite decades of research, what I heard as a child is still a popular notion–that once a person has matured the brain can no longer replace cells or change.

That idea first came into serious question when it was observed that many individuals who lost the functioning of large parts of their brain due to stroke or accident were able to regain abilities thought to be controlled only by the destroyed part.

Doctors, therapists, and determined patients observed that although the brain did designate certain areas to specific functions, with immediate therapy the brain could “rewire” itself and allow other areas to learn lost functions and grow new neurons.

Scientists are able to track brain activity and confirm the change. Parts of the brain that aren’t used regularly grow smaller while learning causes the brain to create new connections between neurons.

What a hopeful and important bit of information this is! By consistently putting attention on learning something new, different behaviors are learned and unused routines become weaker, taking up less brain real estate.

I usually limit videos included in the blog to less than 4 minutes but this topic is so important and this video so educational that I’m posting it despite its length. It’s almost 18 minutes and well worth the time invested, especially if you are discouraged about making personal change.

I also want to mention several other scientists whose teachings are accessible to those of us not familiar with scientific language. These individuals have authored a variety of popular books about the brain, have websites, and conduct classes or workshops.

Dr. Dan Siegel, founder of the Mindsight Institute, describes the work of the institute as devoted to nurturing a kinder society. He coined the term interpersonal neurobiology to describe an interdisciplinary field focusing on the way the brain develops and is shaped by interpersonal relationships. “Inspire to rewire” is his motto.

In this link, Norman Doidge, M.D., speaks in two interviews which are also reproduced in transcriptions. He discusses the discovery of brain plasticity and why we didn’t see it sooner. He also speaks of brain’s plasticity being both a detriment and benefit to recovery–harmful by repeating the old story, thereby renewing it, and advantageous by re-examining the trauma and re-wiring new behaviors and attitudes. In his book The Brain That Changes Itself, he shares exemplary stories of personal triumph.

John J. Medina is a developmental molecular biologist and author of Brain Rules. What he refers to as principles include functions of the brain such as sleep or memory and factors that affect the brain such as stress and exercise. He looks at how what we know about the brain could transform our lives, the way we work, and how we teach our children. His book includes practical ways to work with the principles he describes.

PRACTICE. Have you discovered a practical technique that helped you learn a new skill or change a habit? Please tell us your story.

Contact. If you’ve been struggling with changing a habit, consider contacting me to teach you Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT). EFT is a powerful way to discover the emotional underpinnings for habits, and once you learn the technique you can apply it to anything that comes up in the future.