Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Tools, Teachers and A Peanut Sized Story Teller

Many people are not aware that I am developing a love for a subject I hated in school: science. Particularly the study of the human brain and all of its magnificent capabilities. When it becomes a commonly accepted view that our brains have an amazing quality called plasticity, I believe our entire educational system will have to be abandoned. The problem lies in a little ceremony called "graduation". Graduation tells us in an unintended way, that one has earned the right to take a break from class. Foolishly, I thought having my degree made me somehow knowlegeable, articulate, skilled...blah blah blah. Then I tried blogging! There are enormous gaps between what I know and what I think I know. And this is where brain science is useful: According to Jill Bolte Taylor in My Stroke of Insight, "One of the most prominent characteristics of our left brain is its ability to weave stories. This storyteller portion of our left mind's language center is specifically designed to make sense of the world outstide of us, based upon minimal amounts of information. It functions by taking whatever details it has to work with, and then weaves them together in the form of a story. Most impressively, our left brain is brilliant in its ability to make stuff up, and fill in the blanks when there are gaps in factual data. In addition, during its process of generating a story line, our left mind is quite the genius in its ability to manufacture alternative scenarios. And if it's a subject you really feel passionate about, either good or awful, it's particularly effective at hooking into those circuits of emotion and exhausting all the "what if" possibilities." The result: DRAMA and TRAUMA. On top of this, these little scenarios can become chemical loops of thought patterns rundunantly running over and over. Loops of thought that run rampant, until our imagination develops devastaing possibilites.

So, now that I am beginning to understand how I end up curled in a fetal position with a blanket over my head at the end of a long, frustrating day...maybe there's hope. Ironically, the story teller part of our brains is only the size of a PEANUT! How in the world does this little peanut have so much control over my happiness in life!

I have decided to recognize this lying little story telling peanut and not accept it when it tells me that I'm not savvy enough for business, interesting enough for blogging, loving enough to my children...

Sometimes one just needs the right tools and the right teachers, and the unfailing belief that an growing older doggie can learn new tricks. Today I LEARNED how to make a button thanks to a wonderful teacher at oikology101. Thank you for showing me how to do something that three months ago my storyteller said I could never do.

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