This series of articles covers evidence based practices that support your mental health and ability to be at your best when it matters most.
In this first article we will introduce the Brain and Behaviour Model.
This series of articles was originally published in our Be At Your Best Community in January 2018. They have been updated and republished here.
Articles in this series
Key Factors Addressed
In these articles we cover:
- How you can maintain balance to focus your attention and be present.
- Practices that enable you to advance from being aware of the importance of doing something, to actually doing it automatically when it is needed.
- How you can strike the right balance between stress and recovery by forming habits on practices such as appreciation; gaining more quality time with family and friends; having more fun; meditation; exercise and healthy eating.
- How you can limit the amount of time you experience restlessness, lack of focus, irritability, acting unreasonably, inappropriately or out of self-preservation.
Using an evidence based approach we will be exploring, sharing and discussing topics such as:
- A simple model for understanding how our brain works and influences our behaviour
- How our physiology (physical energy and capacity) impacts our brain’s functioning
- The impact of feeling safe in your work environment
- How a sense of belonging, recognition, respect and factors such as self-esteem/self-worth impact our brain in social settings such as work
- The impact of having a sense of meaning and purpose in what you do
- Practical tips and tools for optimising brain performance when you need to be at your best
Brain & Behaviour Model
We will get started by introducing the brain and behaviour model. This model represents the key factors in building healthy brain functioning and effective behaviour. We will use this model throughout this series of articles.
By detecting and determining your effective and ineffective behaviours, you can minimise what is ineffective and develop and embed what is effective.
With practice, you develop a sustainable change in habits, whilst developing the required competencies; achieving meaningful growth and the desired results.
You can more about our approach to habits here (requires sign-up to our free community).
Our brain drives our behaviour. By building awareness on how your brain functions and influences your behaviour; you better understand what drains and gains your mental resources. Hence you can develop habits that improve your management of your mental resources and your brain’s capabilities.
The brain is an immensely complex organ, but it is not a machine that can work optimally at high speeds for long periods of time. Our executive brain’s functioning requires a lot of energy and it tires easily. Sleep, rest, movement and achieving an optimal stress and recovery balance, helps us to maintain an optimal amount of available resources.
We naturally seek social settings and environments in which we feel safe. We also want to feel accepted for who we are, to be recognised and feel a sense of belonging. It is important to sense, that we are able to influence our own future and to make decisions for ourselves. Meeting these social needs helps to create motivation and engagement. We can measure how much time we spend collaborating: in email and in meetings. Using this information we can determine whether we are spending enough time with the right people.
Having a sense of purpose is related to having the intention to accomplish something that is meaningful to you and makes a positive difference for others. Having a sense of purpose not only increases our brain performance, it also helps us to channel and focus our brain’s capabilities, with full motivation, no matter the challenges we face. We are also better able to keep our mind open, to be creative and to better explore our options.
In the next article we explore the basics of how our brain functions and influences how we think, feel, behave and perform.
If you are looking for more information and practical tools to understand your brain, change your behaviour or form habits; we address these topics in our FOCUSWRX Habits digital course.