is the brain's ability to change its structure and function in response to mental experiences
Neuroplasticity is the property of rewiring the brain to change structure and function in response to mental experiencing. Neuroplasticity ranges from making new neuronal connections to growing new neurons — thereby increasing grey matter, the outer layer of the human brain.
Science Today, science knows that hypnotic trance, NLP and visualisations make profound positive changes to neural chemistry in our brains. This helps the brain reorganise itself, and to create new and healthy brain pathways.
Therapy: The point of therapy is to change one's belief and thinking — ergo, one's mind. By reframing one's negative beliefs, one brings about positive changes in the brain. Therapy is therefore a typical example of positive neuroplasticity.
- Focussed-attention (FA) meditation: This type of meditation calms and changes the brain allowing one to better resist distractions and become more efficient in goal directed concentration.
- Open-monitoring (OM) meditation: This involves moment-to-moment passive monitoring of the content of one's thoughts and experience. In other words, one becomes a non-judgemental observer of what is going on inside oneself. This brings tremendous insight about one's thought processes and how they can be negative or even self-destructive.
The Dalai Lama says that
East and West converge in the matters of the mind. Meditation is a form of neuroplasticity. In the west, we now find evidence that meditation is as profound at changing the brain as any other therapeutic method.
Is your mind is too active to meditate? Many clients complain that their minds are too busy and prevents them from meditating. Indeed so. One of the most effective ways to calm the mind is performing some simple breathing exercises, of which there are many. There is no right or wrong here. Calming the mind through breathing exercise is very often used to induce a trance-like, meditative state. We are left concluding that meditation is a beneficial tool that calms the mind and increases brain acuity. With regular practise, one quickly achieves this state. It is easy to learn. Yvonne is happy to teach you how to achieve this.
Addiction is an example of negative brain plasticity. It is an adaptation of brain in response to outside influence. Addiction causes a reduction of grey matter.
The National Institute of Drug Abuse in America, the world's largest research body on the science of addiction, defines addiction as follows,
[it] is a chronic, relapsing brain disease that is characterized by compulsive drug seeking and use, despite harmful consequences. This happens because the brain adapts functionally and structurally in the presence of toxic substances such as drugs of abuse or alcohol. However, it also changes as a result of over-stimulation due to repeated behaviour like chronic gambling and pornography.
Curious to know more about addiction? more