The concept of mental plasticity or Neuroplasticity fascinates me. In laymen’s terms neuroplasticity refers to the brain’s ability to adapt and optimize its function to best address the environment one finds themselves in. A great personal development resource that describes the mechanics of how this happens and also provides some great examples is a book titled – The Talent Code: Greatness Isn’t Born. It’s Grown. Here’s How.
If you can accept that this process exists, it has PROFOUND implications. “Why?”, you may ask. Have you ever wondered:
- Why can’t I stop smoking?
- How did Michael Jordan or any star athlete achieve their level of peak human performance?
- Why does she continue to find herself in destructive relationships?
- How can I learn to play the guitar like David Gilmour?
The answers to these and any other puzzling human behavior or ability come into focus with a deeper understanding of the ways these behaviors are formed and reinforced over time. Obviously there is more to it than this one biomechanical process. I have found that the following concepts also covered in the book play a major role:
- A clear vision for what you want
- Your circle of influence
- Focus & deep practice (You may have heard about the magical number of 10K hours to mastery)
Can you achieve what you desire with just one of these? Likely not. Can you achieve your vision with 2 of 3? Perhaps. You can cut down a tree with a hammer but it will take a lot longer and required a whole lot more effort, so why not find an axe. If you’re in a difficult situation or perhaps just feel like your life is similar to Bill Murray’s experience in Ground Hog Day just realize that you possess Mental Plasticity! Research this topic and you’re bound to find some ideas on how to move in your desired direction.
I’m on my own personal crusade of self development. It includes this BLOG for example. I’ll write more about how and why I found myself on this journey in future posts. Maybe one day my daughters won’t think of me as their crazy dad who always made them listen to personal development CDs, podcast, and quotes but as a model for their own success!
What are you thoughts on this topic?