You Are Not Your Brain Summary – Break Bad Habits

Author: Jeffrey M. Schwartz

You Are Not Your Brain (2011) teaches us that we can control our lives and change our bad behaviors. The author has guided the readers on how to get rid of bad habits through behavioral therapy. Moreover, the book has described the ways we can change our bad habits.
you are not your brain

Detailed Summary

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit. —ARISTOTLE”
― Jeffrey M. Schwartz,

The book You are not your Brain is written by Jeffrey M. Schwartz, an American Psychiatrist, and researcher in neuroplasticity. In his famous book, You are not your Brain; he has guided readers to change their bad habits.

He has explained how neuroplasticity can help us to change our bad behaviors. Besides this, it can also help us to think positively. The book has explained the steps that need to be followed in order to change your bad habits.

You Are Not Your Brain Summary Key Points

Have you canceled your plans because of the shitty people’s questions? Or do you avoid speaking in front of people or an audience because it makes you stressed? You are not alone in this. We all have some kind of anxiety problem that makes life miserable.

But how to overcome this fear?

This self-help book educates how to stop yourself from listening to your false brain messages every time. Moreover, it will demonstrate 4 steps that help break the connection with the brain to live a happy life.

Change your behavior through neuroplasticity

First of all, the author is a neuroplasticity researcher who has explained how we can change our bad behaviors through self-directed neuroplasticity.

Just as neuroplasticity changes the pathways in our brain, we can also use it and change our bad habits. We also have the ability to alter the circuits in our own brains, and we can do so on our own.

This indicates that even if you’re currently trapped with a few unhealthy behaviors, you can break them. The fact that your brain is wired in a certain manner does not mean that it defines you. By accepting that you are not your brain, you may alter the physical structure within it so that it works in your favor rather than against you.

This happens when you read stories like Christopher Reeve’s, the famed Superman actor, who altered his thinking after becoming paralyzed and finally could walk again.

Use Hebb’s law and the Quantum Zeno effect

The more you use one of your brain’s neuronal pathways, the stronger it becomes. Let’s imagine you’ve started a new job and need to take the bus every morning at 8 a.m. to get to work on time. The first week goes smoothly, but on Tuesday of week two, you arrive at 8:01 a.m. and miss the bus.

Because you’ll be late and maybe yelled at, this causes you stress and anxiety. You smoke a cigarette to relieve stress while waiting for the next bus, and it works. Nicotine and movement provide a sensation of relief and help to relax you.

The quantum Zeno effect is the second concept. This significant quantum physics concept is based on ancient Greek philosopher Zeno’s arrow conundrum, which states that if a system is continuously observed, it can be frozen in its state.

 So, it means that if you are aware of your negative behavior and observe it frequently enough, Hebb’s law will be stopped in its tracks, giving you ample time to combat it. You may then rewire your brain with a better habit by intentionally changing your ideas and actions.

Step to Break a Bad Habit

“The more often you act in these unhealthy ways, the more you teach your brain that what is simply a habit (a learned behavior) is essential to your survival.”
― Jeffrey M. Schwartz

The author has explained 4 steps through which we can break a bad habit. They are aware, relabel, refocus, and revalue.

The first step is to become conscious of your negative thoughts as they arise. This necessitates mindfulness, which can be learned, for example, through meditation.

The second step is to rename those negative thoughts. You just alienate them to put a line between you and your brain.

The third step is to concentrate your attention on a pleasant activity, such as writing, conversing, or contacting a friend, to demonstrate that you can go about your business as usual even when negative thoughts arise

and the fourth step is to revalue your position from a loving and caring standpoint in order to change your self-perception.

You can also read the book The Path Made Clear Summary.

Who would I recommend You Are Not Your Brain Summary to?

The book You are not your Brain is highly recommended to all those who overthink a lot and negativity controls their brain and life. The book will help them get rid of it.

You Are Not Your Brain Summary - February 2022

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