Do you know that you have more than one brain? While we typically distinguish our brain between the right and the left, there’s actually a far more significant between the back and the front of the brain.
Let’s call one the warrior and the other, the ambassador.
The warrior brain, powered by the amygdala:
- Reacts very quickly (fight, flight or freeze)
- Operates without permission
- Tilts away from people, clarity and opportunities
- Emotional contagion is of stress/anxiety/anger
Then we have the ambassador brain, powered by the frontal cortex, which:
- Verifies if danger is real before responding
- Weighs options and plans for the future
- Tilts towards clarity, people and opportunities
- Emotional contagion is of calm/compassion/inclusion
During moments of perceived threat, the warrior brain can kick in, allowing panic and fear to become the focus.
Let’s take the the coronavirus for example. In this case, fear and panic are spreading faster than the virus itself.
For leaders and decision makers, this a crucial time to activate the ambassador brain. It allows for
calm, rational thinking
the ability to respond, not react
a resilient and flexible approach to developments
a clear focus on what’s important and what to prioritize
access to creative problem solving skills
deliberate, thoughtful decisions
But how do we keep this part of the brain activated when there’s chaos and fear around us?
In times like these, we need a means of connecting to and calming the fight-or-flight reflex. It has to be powerful enough to disarm that inner alarm reflex even when it is in full force. We need to be able to soothe our own and others’ distressed emotional states.
The answer as you may have guessed, is meditation.
Even a 10-minute meditation can flex the ambassador parts of the brain. Check out this image below with the difference in brain activity before and after meditation:
If you’d like to check this out yourself, I invite you to join me for a Tibetan Healing Meditation tomorrow at Timucua Arts Foundation at 730pm
You can find more information and register here.
This is a donation based event and no one will be turned away…
As you return to your calm center, you’ll start a ripple effect that will bring others to the same place as well.