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March 22, 2020 Public Report On Resilient Living (A Happy Brain)


Dr. Amit Sood

 

 

 

Living with angry brains

Dear friend,

The next few weeks will challenge your emotional and social skills. Many of you will be spending a lot of time with a few people. If you are at home with someone who gets on your nerves by his or her remarkable negativity, the perspective below might help.  
 
The response to getting a dent on the car could be many: meh, anger, even gratitude that it was just a dent, and nobody got hurt. For the untrained brain, the grateful response may feel unreal and perhaps premature. The question is – what determines whether the response is meh versus anger. 
 
Some of it relates to the choices we make. A large part, however, is dictated by our brain’s design. In the brain, the amygdala:hippocampus volume ratio (AH ratio) correlates with anger and negative memory bias; the higher the ratio, the greater the anger and more negative the thinking. (1) 
 
AH ratio depends on your genetic makeup, early childhood adversity, and a plethora of other factors, many outside of your control. (2)
 
So, perhaps for your own sake, recognize that people who are wonderful at finding that one eye roll amidst a hundred applauses likely have high AH ratio. They will be tough to please, will see agenda behind your compliments, and will have low frustration tolerance. This realization will get you out of the victim mode. 
 
Instead of anger and frustration, remind yourself that very likely an annoying person isn’t choosing to be that way. He or she is struggling with a high AH ratio. With this awareness, try your best to be calm and kind in that person’s presence. 
 
Connecting biology with behavior to validate others and the self can be very powerful. It helps you cultivate calm and authentic compassion, that are phenomenally helpful for your physical and emotional wellbeing as well as immunity – the recipe we need to overcome our present challenge.
 
1: Gerritsen L, Rijpkema M, van Oostrom I, Buitelaar J, Franke B, Fernández G, Tendolkar I. Amygdala to hippocampal volume ratio is associated with negative memory bias in healthy subjects. Psychol Med. 2012 Feb;42(2):335-43. doi:10.1017/S003329171100122X. Epub 2011 Jul 11. PubMed PMID: 21740626.
 
2: Gilliam M, Forbes EE, Gianaros PJ, Erickson KI, Brennan LM, Shaw DS. Maternal depression in childhood and aggression in young adulthood: evidence for mediation by offspring amygdala-hippocampal volume ratio. J Child Psychol Psychiatry. 2015 Oct;56(10):1083-91. doi: 10.1111/jcpp.12364. Epub 2014 Nov 26. PubMed PMID: 25424551; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC4444403.

Take care.

Amit

Amit Sood, MD MSc

www.resilientoption.com
www.resiliencetrainer.com

 


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March 22, 2020 Public Report On Resilient Living (A Happy Brain)

 


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DMC Impact(s): Health & Wellness

PlanScape(s): Aging ; Best Practice ; Chronic Illness ; Diversity and Inclusion ; Health ; Mental Health

Community Health Impact(s): Financial Stress/Homelessness ; Mental Health

Date: 2020/03/22

Last Modification Date: 2016-10-10T21:14:49-05:00

Last Modified by: support

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