Books on Neuroscience
Anything by Daniel Siegal is great.
From a pioneer in the field of mental health comes a groundbreaking book on the healing power of "mindsight," the potent skill that is the basis for both emotional and social intelligence. Mindsight allows you to make positive changes in your brain-and in your life.
- Is there a memory that torments you, or an irrational fear you can't shake?
- Do you sometimes become unreasonably angry or upset and find it hard to calm down?
- Do you ever wonder why you can't stop behaving the way you do, no matter how hard you try?
- Are you and your child (or parent, partner, or boss) locked in a seemingly inevitable pattern of conflict?
What if you could escape traps like these and live a fuller, richer, happier life? This isn't mere speculation but the result of twenty-five years of careful hands-on clinical work by Daniel J. Siegel, M.D. A Harvard-trained physician, Dr. Siegel is one of the revolutionary global innovators in the integration of brain science into the practice of psychotherapy. Using case histories from his practice, he shows how, by following the proper steps, nearly everyone can learn how to focus their attention on the internal world of the mind in a way that will literally change the wiring and architecture of their brain.
Through his synthesis of a broad range of scientific research with applications to everyday life, Dr. Siegel has developed novel approaches that have helped hundreds of patients heal themselves from painful events in the past and liberate themselves from obstacles blocking their happiness in the present. And now he has written the first book that will help all of us understand the potential we have to create our own lives. Showing us mindsight in action, Dr. Siegel describes
- a sixteen-year-old boy with bipolar disorder who uses meditation and other techniques instead of drugs to calm the emotional storms that made him suicidal
- a woman paralyzed by anxiety, who uses mindsight to discover, in an unconscious memory of a childhood accident, the source of her dread
- a physician-the author himself-who pays attention to his intuition, which he experiences as a "vague, uneasy feeling in my belly, a gnawing restlessness in my heart and my gut," and tracks down a patient who could have gone deaf because of an inaccurately written prescription for an ear infection
- a twelve-year-old girl with OCD who learns a meditation that is "like watching myself from outside myself" and, using a form of internal dialogue, is able to stop the compulsive behaviors that have been tormenting her
These and many other extraordinary stories illustrate how mindsight can help us master our emotions, heal our relationships, and reach our fullest potential.
A book as inspiring as it is informative, as practical as it is profound, Mindsight offers exciting new proof that we aren't hardwired to behave in certain ways, but instead have the ability to harness the power of our minds to resculpt the neural pathways of our brains in ways that will be life-transforming
Neuropsychologist Rick Hanson explores how we can use our mind (through meditation) to change our brain. Which in turn, changes the mind for the better. This is a great book to help you understand some of the effects on the central nervous system - which I find is a great motivator for a daily practice. It’s also full of good exercises to try and the science behind why they are effective. He manages to blend science and spirituality which I always appreciate as it’s hard to do. A great read and very useable.
Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers
When you are feeling down, try watching a lecture by this guy - Robert Sapolsky, he's hilarious. This book will help you understand the human stress response, chronic stress and the problems it can cause. It illustates what we can do to ourselves with our too clever minds. A great meditation motivator.
Now in a third edition, Robert M. Sapolsky's acclaimed Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers features new chapters on how stress affects sleep and addiction, as well as new insights into anxiety and personality disorder and the impact of spirituality on managing stress.
As Sapolsky explains, most of us do not lie awake at night worrying about whether we have leprosy or malaria. Instead, the diseases we fear-and the ones that plague us now-are illnesses brought on by the slow accumulation of damage, such as heart disease and cancer. When we worry or experience stress, our body turns on the same physiological responses that an animal's does, but we do not resolve conflict in the same way-through fighting or fleeing. Over time, this activation of a stress response makes us literally sick.
Combining cutting-edge research with a healthy dose of good humor and practical advice, Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers explains how prolonged stress causes or intensifies a range of physical and mental afflictions, including depression, ulcers, colitis, heart disease, and more. It also provides essential guidance to controlling our stress responses. This new edition promises to be the most comprehensive and engaging one yet.