You can’t teach an old dog new tricks. Past the ripe age of 25, we are fully cooked; calcified in our ways. So dispense with the idea of learning a new language, skill, or thought pattern—it’s just not happening.
But what if that idea is simply false?
What if I told you that you actually have the power to change your brain and reprogram your perception, irrespective of age?
This is the life’s work of today’s guest, Andrew Huberman, Ph.D.
A neuroscientist and tenured professor in the Department of Neurobiology at Stanford University School of Medicine, Andrew specializes in neuroplasticity--the brain's ability to reorganize and repair itself by forming new neural connections throughout life. In addition, his work in the Huberman Lab at Stanford has been featured on the pages of Science, Discover, Scientific American, Time, and the New York Times, not to mention countless peer-reviewed journals.
First and foremost, this is a conversation about what it really takes to shift our thought patterns.
A master class on all things neuroplasticity, Dr. Huberman walks us through the brain's inherent ability to modify itself based on experience and how we can advantageously leverage this process--through focus, mindfulness and restorative sleep--to not only learn new skills but also improve all essential aspects of well-being.
We cover his research in self-motivation, and how we can hijack our dopamine systems and optimize stress to move forward in difficult situations.
We discuss the inner workings of our nervous systems and how we can use our physical bodies—our diaphragms and visual systems—to access and optimize certain states of mind.
And we also explore Dr. Huberman’s personal transformation. How he transcended family dysfunction and his days as a punk rock skater truant. And the most unlikely path he blazed to becoming the celebrated scientist he is today.
Andrew teaches us that to shift the way that you function, changing your behavior is the first step.
I just see it as the science backing my favorite mantra -- mood follows action.
The visually inclined can watch it all go down on YouTube. And as always, the audio version streams wild and free on Apple Podcasts and Spotify.
The Appetizer: People seemed to enjoy my previous brief check-in segments with Mishka Shubaly and Nadia Bolz-Weber so I thought I’d do it again. Today’s main course warm-up comes courtesy of my friend Utkarsh Ambudkar, the linguistically dexterous musician, actor and rapper longtime listeners will recall from RRP #373. The occasion is the release of We Are Freestyle Love Supreme--a must see documentary that chronicles a tribe of über-talented artists--including UTK and one Lin-Manuel Miranda--from humble beginnings to Broadway superstardom. I love this film. Check it immediately on Hulu (and no, this is not a sponsored thing).
I am super impressed by Andrew, his story and the crucial work he is doing. And grateful for the practical tools graciously shared today.
May this exchange serve to expand your perception, capabilities, and worldview.
Peace + Plants,