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Conflict: Is it all in your head?

From Stephanie West Allen’s blog on Neuroscience and conflict resolution .

Since neuroscience is one eye through which we look on this blog, and the brain is in the head, I am glad to be reminded of how important the rest of the body is to conflict resolution. The mind and the brain are important but so are the foot and the ankle and the shin . . .

The latest reminder was in an article from The New Mexican: "Mapping the mind." The reporter Jennifer Strand tells us the story behind the soon-to-be-published book The Body Has a Mind of Its Own: How Body Maps in Your Brain Help You Do (Almost) Everything Better written by science writers Sandra Blakeslee and her son Matthew Blakeslee, and gives an overview of the book . . .

The book explores the concept of “body maps” in the brain that trace their routes throughout the body and beyond. According to the book, your body is actually mapped onto your brain (homunculus). All these maps together create your sense of your body (body schema) and you create your own map with your attitude toward your body (body image).

“Research now shows that your brain is teeming with body maps — maps of your body’s surface, its musculature, its intentions, its potential for action, even a map that automatically tracks and emulates the actions and intentions of other people around you,” the Blakeslees write. “These body-centered maps are profoundly plastic — capable of significant reorganization in response to damage, experience, or practice.”

Practice. There’s self-directed neuroplasticity again. Be sure to take a look at the article then don’t miss the exercise near the end of that page.

An excerpt from the book was published in Scientific American in an article entitled  "Where Mind and Body Meet." In the article, the


Stephanie West Allen

Stephanie West Allen, JD, practiced law in California for several years, held offices in local bar associations, and wrote chapters for California Continuing Education of the Bar. While in CA, Stephanie completed several five-day mediation training programs with the Center for Mediation in Law, as well as a two-year intensive… MORE >

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