How the Brain Learns

Learning means new connections in the brain.

Your brain works like an electrical circuit. Every time you learn something new, connections form between neurons in your brain. Just as an electrical current travels through a circuit, signals are transmitted from one group of neurons to another. The stronger the electrical signal, the stronger the connection between the neurons.

If you have a daily ritual, you’ve felt the effects of a strong connection. Hopping in your car, turning the key in the ignition, and backing out of your driveway can all happen without you even thinking about it. This feeling of automaticity is a result of brain circuitry that’s been strengthened through repetition.

Just as the strength of neural connections plays a role in learning, it also makes it more difficult to “unlearn” negative thought patterns or change habits. An isolated good experience or New Year’s Resolution can be tough to maintain, but the brain can change itself, a phenomenon known as neuroplasticity. Hypnosis can make this easier by encouraging the formation of new neural pathways, and relating new information and new thoughts to other networks of information in your brain.

We really don’t know what the brain is capable of, so why not put it to the test and try?

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