This post is in honor of Brain Awareness Week
Celebrated March 16-22.
Why is the Brain important?
The Brain is the grand conductor of the Symphony of Our Selves! That’s right. The Brain leads mind and body, and the Brain heeds mind and body. The Brain plays a role in every thought, feeling, and body sensation we experience. That includes every twitch, every blink, every strum of a guitar, every orgasm. That also includes every dream, passion, fear, joy, and deepest desire.
The Brain is the big boss and on top of that, it has a lot of nerve too!
Seriously speaking, the brain and the spinal cord make up the Nervous System, composed of billions of nerve cells (i.e. neurons) that speak back and forth between the brain and body. What’s the convo like? Well, the Nervous System is at least bilingual, and speaks both electrically and chemically. The latter refers to neurotransmission of substances like norepinephrine, dopamine and serotonin, which we know play a huge role in our mood functioning, among a lot of other things.
The neuro-nutshell is really just THIS: Miraculous.
Every memory you consolidated last night while you slept, each micro-movement used to brush your teeth this morning, every smoothie you tasted, step you took, daydream you pondered, daydream you snapped out of, work you intently focused upon, yawn you took, anxiety you felt, drop in blood sugar you experienced was a manifestation of lots of talking. A plethora of dialogue went on inside of you today, and you need to know it!
Why is it so important to know how much chatter the brain is doing?
To be mindful of the orchestration of our internal states (some in reaction to the external, some not) is to be mindful of the essentiality of nourishing our brains.
How do we nourish the Brain?
The latest scientific research shows: Neuroplasticity, the idea that new neurons can be created, makes it very possible for lifestyle to play a big role, no matter your age, in maintaining and improving brain function. Of course, as always, nature and nurture dance an exquisite but complex dance, and so there is never one solution or one cause and effect paradigm when it comes to your wellness.
Yet, there is something each of us can do to help our Brains stay vital:
- Reduce your stress levels (and SO much else) by practicing Mindful Meditation
- Get the blood a pumpin’ around up there via Exercise
- Use it, so you don’t Lose it, by engaging in Mental Stimulation
- Literally nourish your brain with Balanced Nutrition
- Stay positively connected to yourself and others by Socializing
Remember. When your Brain Thrives, YOU Thrive.