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Can Your Brain Change?

Yesterday, like many times before, I was experiencing a computer glitch.' Was it a virus? Some weird malware? I don't know, but it was messing with my treasured photos, important documents, data spreadsheets, and appointment calendar. It would mean hours of work to replace, rewrite, and a grieved heart for those priceless pics of my beautiful family memories. As the sweat ran down my face and the clock struck 3 A.M., I tried, to no avail, to fix my computer. Finally, exhausted, I fell asleep. In my dreams, "I woke up in the morning and went straight to my computer to continue trying to fix it. To my amazement, I turned it on, and the computer was working perfectly. The computer repaired itself through the night! Then I woke up. What a dream!

Now that may not happen in the world of malfunctioning computers, but our human hardware, our brain, does repair itself. It is fascinating, to say the least! The brain is formed by connecting neurons, creating different pathways with different functions. The human brain is a fantastic computer that performs numerous functions, like storing data, sending messages, and reacting to stimuli. It also has the capacity to regenerate, forming new pathways All on its own. This regeneration is called "neuroplasticity." Neuroplasticity is the brain's capacity to change, remodel and reorganize for the purpose of better ability to adapt to new situations and expand functionality. It is one of the most important processes in Neuroscience today. It is essential to know that the formation of new neurons — neurogenesis, continues throughout our lifetime. Of course, we can do things to promote this process, such as running, learning, and even participating in healthy relationships with others. It is crucial to be intentional and proactive in promoting the formation of these new neurons. We can also do things to thwart their growth and lead to the destruction of neurons, such as alcohol consumption, drugs, and sustaining a head injury, among others.

So get out your running shoes, read a good book and sharpen your relational skills. Your brain will thank you…

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