A new study reported by the Huffington Post, among others, is reporting that cocaine begins rewiring the brain even after a single usage. This is old news to those of us who deal with addictions or have ever taken a class on neurochemistry. Drug and Alcohol Counselors have known for years that the opiates, though seemingly innocuous when taken at prescription strength (T3’s, Percocets, Emtec, Morphine, Oxys, Heroine, etc) have a profound and physical effect on a neurological level. Unfortunately for many of us, so does porn. Actually on some level any response mechanism, coping techniques, cognitive distortion or belief has not only a physical but also a neurochemical effect on your brain. There are fantastic and crackpot websites a plenty to explain this all over the internet. Some are informative, some are… less informative.
It’s important to understand that the brain is not a static device, set in stone as they say. It is actually possible to change the way the brain spits out those little chemicals and where those little dudes land. If you don’t believe me just start or stop a habit. Creating a habit is nothing more, on a chemical level, than rewiring where your dudes land. You can change the way you act, the way you think, what you believe, who you are. This is powerful information if you know how to manipulate it. You are not a victim of your circumstances, at least on a neurological level. You can convince yourself of virtually anything, given enough time and effort. It’s a fascinating study that has pragmatic consequences. If you don’t believe me google neuroplasticity, or synapses, or dendrites, axons or neurons and you’ll soon have a ton of new material to throw around at parties to impress your friends.
Psychology has come a long way since we liked to drill people’s heads, and information is power. Once you realize that quitting smoking, or stopping catastophizing, dealing with your poor self-esteem, or stopping using cocaine is a matter of rewiring your brain it is possible to hope that change can come.
You can do it. It’s a scientific fact.
7 thoughts on “Rewiring Your Brain”
The “don’t believe everything you think” in this context has given me food for thought. I would normally only have associated it with cognitive biases.
Oh my…..I believe this too, but this is written in a way that sounds just a bit too simplistic. It’s incredibly difficult to change ANY behavior. And it isn’t just chemicals (as you know) where an addiction can be formed. When it comes to abuse, it’s even more difficult to do if behaviors have been lifetime habits. It’s been hell to change my behaviors. HELL…but it can be done, with a little bit of patience and TIME 🙂
All very true – I’ve overcome some difficult challenges over time by using tools like meditation, logic, and EFT to help rewire my brain. It did require discipline and effort, but the results are well worth it, and now sometimes I can help other people too. It’s all good! 🙂
The key words in your post, Scott – “given enough time and effort”. From my own research into the myriad causes of obesity, I know it takes at least 18 months completely free of high fat/sugar foods before the cravings stop. I’ve been told by former smokers that the craving never goes away.
It’s a dedication of effort and time that many people are not willing to give, but then they wouldn’t be reading your blog. 😉
As far as quality information out there, I’d like to recommend the site Your Brain on Porn (yourbrainonpron.com) . I learned a lot about my own addictions and bipolar type II over there.
awesome, thanks for the information. Change takes time, as you say so well. Guess that’s why people don’t do it!
SOME of us do it, but it seems to be a particular character flaw.