Change your Brain Maps

Gerald Edelman is an American Biologist Nobel Prize winner and has done much work around consciousness.


Edelman theorises that the mind and consciousness are biological processes that arise from complex cellular processes within the brain.


Edelman suggest that every memory, every piece of data, idea, habit, thought—is made up of a set of connections among neurons, like a map of connecting roadways in our brain. Each of these maps can involve up to 50,000 neurons.


We create maps for everything. This includes maps for sight, sound, language, face, ideas and memories that we remember, whether consciously or not. We sometimes form temporary maps. For example when driving a car, we do not hold in our mind ever building we drive past on our way to work. But after taking that journey even once, we will have formed a basic map of the route.


After driving this route many times, we will easily remember it; with enough repetitions, we will follow it even when we are not consciously attending to it. The map of the buildings becomes lost, while the map of the route becomes what we often refer to as “hardwired.” There are maps of maps and the map of maps, and so forth. This application of maps is why revision is so key to learning processes. The more familiar you are with something, the easier you will be able to recall it.


So maps are our internal representations of the way the external world works for us. These enable us to understand and interact with that world. The maps that convey information that is used the most get further hardwired into our brain and become more likely to be activated in the future.


Just take a moment to think of a young child.  How many very young children have phobias? Phobias and fears are developed over time. The more you get exposed to the stimulus the more hard-wired the problem becomes. We also are at risk of learning maps off other people. So a child can easily learn to map there parents problem maps. In fact they are walking map copying machines, so its important to be aware of how you can affect children in your environment.


You may wonder why this is so important and the relevance with hypnotherapy. In practical terms this theory supports so much of the work that is done in therapy with my clients.


My clients come to see me with a variety of problems that are their very own constructed maps. There are individual smoking maps, fear or phobia maps, maps of anxiety, maps of compulsive behaviours, maps of eating disorders, maps of binge drinking and so on.The longer the client has had the problem the more hard-wired the problem is in the brain. 

During the first minutes of meeting my clients, I map out my clients maps. A key process of therapy is to get my clients to de-construct their own maps, and write a new map in its place.

If you want to find out more and need help changing something in your life, such as quitting smoking, or tackling a fear or phobia, then please contact me using the contact form on the right.

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