Viewpoint: Turn off the automatic

Learn how to strengthen your mind by boosting your Positive Intelligence

Last month I talked about how learning about mental fitness helped me to gain a new perspective on how the brain develops and this month I’m going to share some of the exercises and practices that I believe have helped me become less stressed, more open, make better decisions and be more understanding.

Whether others feel the same is for them to judge, but I hope that learning more about myself and how I operate, has had a positive impact on my relationships with friends and work colleagues.

I should start with a caveat; I am not a neuroscientist, nor a trained counsellor or psychotherapist. I am someone who has learned some of the practical ways in which mental fitness has worked for me. If this is of interest, I will gladly share some of the books and articles I have read on the subject.

One of the easiest analogies for how mental fitness works is to imagine that neural pathways are like the ruts you see in the countryside made by tractors repeatedly going along the same track. As the tractor runs over the same ground, the ruts get deeper and more embedded until no other vehicles can drive along that path. The pathway becomes ingrained and eventually the ruts are so deep that the tractor will run along the path without needing to be steered.

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