Category Archives: News and Noteworty Articles

To Really Learn Something, Repeatedly Learn It

Neurofeedback practitioners know that brain training involves rewarding the brain for changing, then repeating that reward over and over again until the brain self-regulates into new patterns and ways of being.  It’s why you don’t come just once for training and expect it to stick, you train repeatedly over the course of a few months.  Fortunately, the process is pleasurable, and almost all trainees look forward to training.  This up-ends the notion that learning cannot be fun and that training the brain is somehow a heavy and serious, no-fun business.

I was struck by this article from the website Raptitude, which also emphasizes the notion that if something is worth learning, one needs to study it more than just once, regardless of what that “it” might be.  The author makes the idea of repeatedly learning something sound pleasurable, so I hope you’ll take a couple of minutes and check it out here.

The Mind and the Brain are not Synonyms

Dan Siegel is quoted in this article from Quartz about the mind in a lovely way, “”I realized if someone asked me to define the shoreline but insisted, is it the water or the sand, I would have to say the shore is both sand and sea,” says Siegel. “You can’t limit our understanding of the coastline to insist it’s one or the other. I started thinking, maybe the mind is like the coastline—some inner and inter process. Mental life for an anthropologist or sociologist is profoundly social. Your thoughts, feelings, memories, attention, what you experience in this subjective world is part of mind.””

I find this fascinating, because it is sometimes very difficult for my clients to realize that they’re training pools of neurons in the brain and are NOT training the mind.

A link to the article is here:  Scientists say your “mind” isn’t confined to your brain, or even your body

Scientists say your “mind” isn’t confined to your brain, or even your body

Exploring Glial Cells

As far as we know, neurofeedback trains pools of neurons in the brain.  Another type of cell, called glial cells, are far more plentiful in the brain, but glial cells remain largely a mystery to neuroscientists.  Over the next decade, I believe we will see an explosion of research into and knowledge about glial cells.  I share this article from Science Daily to point to exciting things on the horizon.  Check out “Uncovering the Power of Glial Cells” here.

Doubt, Faith, and Contemplation

I just spent an hour listening to Benedictine sister Joan Chittister speak about faith, doubt, contemplation, and social justice issues. I was especially struck by her story of a journalist who came to Chittister’s soup kitchen to speak with the children they service. The journalist spoke with an eight-year-old girl who said that she had no idea that people were supposed to eat three meals a day. She was EIGHT, in the United States, and never had enough food.

This story falls a bit outside of my usual concentration on neurofeedback and brain science, but to me, building compassion is part of building a healthy brain.

The interview is on a Sounds True podcast and can be reached here: https://www.soundstrue.com/store/weeklywisdom?page=single&category=IATE&episode=12895&utm_source=bronto&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=TS171210-Be-A-Blessing&utm_content=May+You+Be+a+Blessing! . It lasts about an hour and is well worth your time.

Teen Substance Abuse Affects Adult Outcomes

Science Daily recently reported that University of Connecticut Health has been conducting studies on how teens who were dependent upon alcohol or marijuana and found that they not only had developmental effects in their teen years, they fared less well as adults.  They wrote, “Overall, individuals who were dependent on either marijuana or alcohol during their teen years achieved lower levels of education, were less likely to be employed full time, were less likely to get married and had lower social economic potential.”  For more information about results so far and the ongoing study, check out the summary here:   https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/11/171105193046.htm

Changes Coming February 1st

In case you’re considering doing brain training with me, now is the time to get started.  At the end of January, I will be increasing my rates for all new clients.  Rates for existing clients will remain the same, so you can avoid the increased rate altogether by starting before January 31, 2018.

For all trainees old enough and/or able, training begins with an assessment of electrical patterns in the brain.  It’s non-invasive, harmless, and takes about an hour.

If you’re still not certain that training is right for you, call or email to set up a complimentary consultation.

The Divided Brain

Many of my clients have had some significant misunderstandings about the differences between the two hemispheres of the brain.  This short (under 12 mins) Ted talk from the brilliant psychiatrist Iain McGilchrist provides an easily understandable introduction to this confusing subject.  With cartoon illustrations, it’s also kind of fun to watch.

Check it out here:  https://www.ted.com/talks/iain_mcgilchrist_the_divided_brain