Are we anxious because we unintentionally develop the anxiety muscle in our brains? My recent reading has led me to consider the possibility.
Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home and School by John Medina offers fascinating insight into the molecular processes that occur in our brains.
Although Medina is a developmental molecular biologist and research consultant chapters like “stressed brains don’t learn the same way” and “we are powerful and natural explorers” capture and entertain those of us with a more elementary knowledge of neural science.
In the chapter on “Wiring–Every brain is wired differently”, Medina tells us our brain is like a muscle: the more you do the same activity, the bigger and more complex that part of the brain that is utilized can become.
For us Aspies. this poses an interesting possibility. Can it be true then, that the more we experience anxiety, the larger and more prominent our anxiety receptors become?
Temple Grandin, in her book The Autistic Brain,states that neuro-imaging shwoed her brain had a larger anxiety receptor than “normal”.
And does Medina’s conclusion explain why forcing ourselves to think positive, to build and maintain positive images of ourselves in social situations, can result in having a better day?
Is it because we are strengthening that part of the brain that builds confidence, feeds positive feelings and reduces our levels of anxiety?
If so, let’s go, Aspies! Let’s exercise the positive neurons, or as Willie Nelson once sang: accentuate the positive and eliminate the negative!
Let us build our brains in a direction in which we are all longing to grow!