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The Power of Mind

Trishna Patnaik

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The Power of Mind

Image by Okan Caliskan from Pixabay

The evolution in the journey of Mind, from being a whole virtual entity driving the thoughts, feelings, emotions towards a more defined brain with its neurological system in place, there certainly a “mysterious something” or Mind, that actually does need to focus, in order to trigger stimulus towards the desired section of the brain.

Over the years since the foundation of Psychology in 1894, ‘Mind’ has significantly lost its space to Neuro Sciences which have been scientifically establishing the functions of the brain and its composed neurological systems to explain human capabilities leading towards processing, storing and recalling information; in order to see, hear and respond; by way of expressing emotions and communicating the usage of languages etc.

It is vital to note that the neuroscience research has made constant progress along a multilevel hierarchy right from behaviour and emotions leading towards molecular interactions and genetic expressions. In fact, various experiments have clearly established that the human brain has specific areas that are identified for each trigger like emotions, memory, intelligence, knowledge, senses etc. and the impulses to and from these earmarked spaces are carried by the intricate network of neurons, that do continue to grow up to a certain age.

There is an increase in activities of specific parts of the brain that are activated by each of these triggers. Whereas the question does remain as to how do we control such triggers? How do we go on to prioritise an impulse or an activity over the others? Our well-wishers have often advised us to stay focused. So, the focus is on what? How can we then focus? Despite the very evolution in the journey of Mind, from being a whole and sole virtual entity driving our thoughts, feelings, emotions to a being a more defined brain with its neurological system, there is a “mysterious something” or Mind, that always needs to focus, in order to trigger the stimulus to the desired section of the brain.

Please make a good note that human beings play different roles in their daily lives such as that of a spouse, a son or daughter, a parent, a student, a teacher, a boss, a subordinate, a team member etc. Each role has a defined framework within which it does operate. This ensures that none of these roles are uni-dimensional.

It is critical to note that the days we perform our roles effectively, paying an appropriate attention to their dimensions, it turns out to be the most productive days in our lives and then we do feel happy and content. In a way today’s world our roles have often multiplied and the very nuances of each role have become far more complex. While understanding each role is very important, executing them to their fullest potential depends on how well we have tuned our Minds to stay engaged to suit the roles we do perform.

A few examples may explain this better…

An extremely intelligent academic student does not pay attention in class and barely manages to clear his exams

A Piano student makes mistakes on the same musical piece in different places when (s)he plays it multiple times, without repeating the same mistakes

A well-prepared speaker suddenly loses his way while speaking on an intense topic

A multi-tasking corporate senior executive does not listen to an intended conversation with his colleagues, and then delivers a misinformed decision

A smart individual contributor is promoted to lead a complex team without any prior preparation

A busy boss does conduct a critical appraisal discussion with one of her key team members, interrupted with multiple calls, ending up in a constrained conflict

A student’s role demands him or her to listen and pay attention in class.

Allowing any thought, feeling or emotion which triggers a different stimulus, increasing the activities of other parts of the brain, not relevant, is bound to be very counter-productive. Not only for the growing children or the teenagers, but this is applicable for grown-tup adults in any facet of life that they struggle if they are unable to tune their Minds to play a role or its nuance effectively.

Let us analyse this further:

Playing roles in our daily lives are synonymous with acting, where actors characterize different personas. The process starts with understanding the character and it is personas in the context of a story as the character unfolds within that story. Studies are then conducted with actors portraying characters that they themselves are not, trying to establish a connection with the activities in the brain, which have remained totally inconclusive. For instance:

The Actor understands and conceives the character, maps the personas of the character onto his or her own Mind, which in turn triggers the required behaviours and expressions in the context of the environment or the situation, in which the character interacts with others.

How different is this process from the roles we play in our daily lives?

The success or failure of our roles depends on how well we understand them and how well we can stay engaged with them. Understanding the roles may be a direct outcome of the time we invest in each of them and the process we take on to adopt. More experiential the process is, the better will be the outcome. Staying engaged is an aspect which depends on how well the Mind can quickly put the guard rails and channelise all energy to stimulate the right parts of the brain to continuously support the very engagement.

This aspect of Mind is still a hypothesis and science which has not yet been able to pin it down and connect it to any physical matter of our body. There are various practices which do promise to discipline this aspect of our Mind, by way of including meditation, breathing exercises etc. Many of those who do practice them have reported improvements in the health of their Mind and Body over a period of time.

Now, how does it all happen remains a mystery.

If Mind is the guiding force of the stimulus or the energy to trigger the correct section of the brain or its network of neurons to function, keeping Mind in check, becomes an imperative for mankind to attain desired levels of effectiveness. It is believed and has even been demonstrated that meditational practices help Mind to focus and not to wander. This would mean that the mysterious Mind can possibly be trained over a time curve.

The Mind flutters and wanders about, the slightest disturbance throws us off, and unwelcome thoughts pester us annoyingly. Over a period of time the Mind settles into the right rhythms and focuses more.

The Power of Mind is unexplored to a large extent. We have departed from the core fundamentals to train our Minds as our life became faster and more complex. The importance of understanding our roles and truly staying engaged with them cannot be duly undermined. Most often we would jump into the roles without understanding the required emotional construct for it. This can be seen further when students will be given tasks to handle without preparing their Minds to engage with them. Employees will take up the roles which would be half understood or hardly ever explained. It is almost like taking a plunge into a deep-water body with no training on swimming. Yes, one may learn to actually stay afloat and even then, swim but it would be at a risk of getting possibly being drowned.

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Trishna Patnaik, a BSc (in Life Sciences) and MBA (in Marketing) by qualification but an artist by choice. A self-taught artist based in Mumbai, Trishna has been practising art for over 14 years. After she had a professional stint in various reputed corporates, she realised that she wanted to do something more meaningful. She found her true calling in her passion that is painting. Trishna is now a full-time professional painter pursuing her passion to create and explore to the fullest. She says, “It’s a road less travelled but a journey that I look forward to everyday.” Trishna also conducts painting workshops across Mumbai and other metropolitan cities of India. Trishna is an art therapist and healer. She works with clients on a one on one basis in Mumbai. Trishna fancies the art of creative writing and is dappling her hands in that too, to soak in the experience and have an engagement with readers, wanderers and thinkers.

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