Is your brain plastic? Yes, according to what Dr. Norman Doidge, M.D. reveals in his book The Brain That Changes Itself.
Psychiatrists and brain researchers have traditionally believed that human brain function is localized and permanently fixed — that specific parts of the brain are wired so that they can only handle one function. For example, one part of the brain can only process sight, another part can only process hearing, etc.
However, modern research is showing that this assumption isn’t true, but that different parts of the brain can be changed and can learn to process new functions. The changes are not just in the working of the brain, but also in the brain chemistry.
To quote Dr. Doidge: “Everything your mind imagines leaves material traces. Each thought alters the physical state of your brain synapses at a microscopic level.”
This means that our human potential for positive personal growth and development is more than we have imagined. It also means that negativity and self-destructive ideas don’t just influence us; they actually physically fetter us in our brain by building a brain structure that imprisons us.
What does having a plastic brain mean for you? It means that the things that you read, watch, and mentally partake of, mold you into their image. Therefore, you desperately need to guard your mind, to filter your thought, to train your thinking in such a way as to build a brain that believes that the best can be.
Just like with our body, we can build a brain with mental muscle or we can allow our brain to atrophy and surround us with misery. Shouldn’t we wisely choose what we allow to shape our brain?