Good Grey Matter
I was thinking about what to pen this week, and then thinked about thinking itself.
I find the brain fascinating. A soft, resilient three-pound labyrinth of endless folds, curves, and microscopic cells working together in a symphony we can only identify as what makes us ourselves.
It’s remarkable that the thing that pulls together our jumble of organs and constructs our sense of self, we know very little about.
Puts it all in a little perspective.
I stumbled upon an article earlier this week about the effects of exploring our inner space. http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2016/02/18/contemplation-therapy/?_r=0
Skeptical of the trending claims, one neuroscientist took it upon herself to study people who had never meditated before. She divided the group and had half of them meditate every day for 8 weeks. Afterwards, she compared brain scans.
And guess what? The people in the group who meditated, well, their brains changed. In only 8 weeks, the grey matter thickened in multiple areas of their brain.
Grey matter is the stuff that's made up of neurons and that makes millions of connections every day throughout your life. Thanks to grey matter, you smell what you smell, you remember what you remember, you decide what you decide, and you are who you are.
The increase in grey matter for her subjects translated to higher learning, stronger memories & emotional regulation, broader perspective taking, empathy & compassion, and less anxiety, fear, and stress.
I guess it pays to be mindful. And the key is to remember that there's no ‘correct’ way to practice being mindful.
“The effort of coming to terms with things you do not understand makes them all the more valuable to you when you do grasp them.”
So bring on the unknown! Because apparently, it’s to our immense benefit.
Have a crazy, mindful, relaxing, adventurous weekend, and get ready to pack a punch with Sea Salt Crystal Butter.