Go forth and multiply

3 December 2017

Musings on today’s mountain bike trail

This is one of those posts that occurred totally spontaneously. It was conceived during a particularly technical mountain bike ride today when I became acutely aware of the amount of rapid decisions that I had to make every few minutes - Do I go right or left of the water, or in fact right through it! True to validated neurophysiology, I was aware that the path that I'd ultimately follow was decided a split second before I consciously made the decision. Once made, I was committed to seeing it through come hell or high water (literally!). Which brings me to the subject of my musings, the 'thing'!

The ‘thing’ doesn’t just appear. It’s not brought by a stork, it has to be conceived and birthed. The ‘thing’ is a system, program (including a music composition), theory/model or a physical entity. Join me on a short journey as I illustrate the variables which go into the conception and birthing of the ‘thing’.

Firstly, I need to summarize two previous articles and fuse them together to create the foundation. The ‘thing’ appears in our pre-frontal cortex (PFC) as a result of a prompt originating in one of the sensory portals or from our cortical memory data, or both. This primordial thing is dripping in our subjectivity. Now in all right handed individuals and 85% of ‘lefties’, the dominant hemisphere is left sided. This hemisphere is the rational, quantifying and linear space which dominates the right hemisphere. It is the place of drive and ambition (as well as fear of failure!). The right hemisphere is the warm-fuzzy space of emotion, big picture sensitivity and ‘out the box’, intuitive perception.

So once the ‘thing’ is conceived in the right hemisphere, it calls on the left PFC to question it (working memory) and through rational reasoning and drive, the left sided PFC creates the workable entity, the hardcopy. And indeed, one single individual, if endowed with the required heritage-determined hardware and software, can complete the entire process. Let’s flesh out what is required: The lively, unfettered imagination of the right hemisphere; well developed pathways crossing from left to right and right to left – manifest by a healthy respect for the intuitive, fuzzy hunches of the right, but also a healthy respect for the reasoning, quantifying left PFC; purposeful, focused engagement and drive of the left hemisphere to bring the thing into reality; the courage of commitment.

Intrinsic to our neuropsychological heritage is the need to be part of the group, the collective (the connective, to be precise!). And so invariably we bring our hemispheral dynamics into the group – we network our respective functions so that the group incorporates a connectivity of right and left hemispheres, cross-over connections and reasoning PFC’s. In fact the group connective is more than the sum of its parts as regards right hemisphere intuitive hunches and warm fuzzies as well as the left hemisphere quantification and integration. This dynamic in fact creates the phenomenon which we recognize as collaboration. The entire process is driven by chemistry – dopamine from the engagement and from the gratification of contributing a meaningful byte; oxytocin from being a member of the group and becoming imbibed in the warm fuzzy sensitivities of the right hemisphere. An extra dose of dopamine and oxytocin gratification of course, for those orchestrating the collaboration banter. In fact there are those whose needs are fully met by merely owning the banter! But ..... this dynamic does not birth the ‘thing’! One element alone births the ‘thing’ – purposeful, focused engagement and drive which is fueled by taking ownership and bringing the ‘thing’ into its definitive form.

The warm fuzziness, sensitivities and group connectivity are great for expanding the substrate after conception. But when it occurs in the warmth of a comfort zone, devoid of angst and necessity, it generally remains just that – warm collaboration with a burgeoning integration, but no definitive birthing. In evolutionary terms it results only in small incremental changes, fettered by the need to stay comfortable without perturbation. Staying with the evolutionary concept, it’s when there’s great drive, necessity or great environmental change, that real innovative birthing happens. And it’s those individuals who have the courage to take ownership of the birthing and maintain focused and single-minded engagement, that become the instruments that bring the ‘thing’ into existence. And for them, an extra dose of dopamine from the sense of achievement!

The driven will invariably tread upon sensitivities, but their overall value contribution and the resulting upliftment of the group and beyond, will more than compensate for the pained and bruised sentiments. And so I say, join the group, collaborate with respect and sensitivity and contribute to the expanding substrate. But then grab your bit of appropriate integration, as an individual or as a group of committed individuals, own it and with single minded commitment, take it the critical extra mile and make it real!

Archive

9 December 2017
Reflections in a cemetery

15 November 2017
Reflections of a mirror

29 October 2017
Dumbing down

26 October 2017
Avoid the brain drain

4 September 2017
An authentic lead

30 August 2017
Pop

23 August 2017
Respect begins at home

16 July 2017
An awe-full story

3 July 2017
Mushroom soup

2 June 2017
Relativity, relatives and other relationships

29 May 2017
Inflamed and smoked

25 May 2017
An Ode to my Mentor

10 May 2017
Counter-evolutionary

27 April 2017
Inspire

16 April 2017
Lost in an expert fog

12 April 2017
Don't be short-changed

30 March 2017
A brAIve New World

15 March 2017
The problem with Gus

12 March 2017
United in Energy

5 March 2017
Transcending emotions

25 February 2017
In the blink of an eye

25 February 2017
The real story about emotions

27 January 2017
Meditation Re-visited

21 January 2017
As a light to a flame

31 December 2016
Drowning in snake oil

24 December 2016
In the glow of an aura

19 December 2016
Mindfully yours

14 December 2016
Time to transcend the Flat Earth Society

4 December 2016
Prejudice and other violations

20 November 2016
Lighting up the Abyss

12 November 2016
Embrace the Zeitgeist and Transcend

9 November 2016
A Curious Life

8 October 2016
Perhaps we ought to read the stars?

3 October 2016
The Lethal Cocktail of Fear with an Existential Crisis

22 September 2016
The truth about truth

27 August 2016
Conscious Integration

21 August 2016
The Toxicity of the Social Media

3 August 2016
Time to Integrate

24 July 2016
I Believe ...

16 June 2016
Crime, punishment and the brain

4 June 2016
The Essence of Effective Leadership

22 May 2016
Engage with the Eloquence of Neuromodulation

15 May 2016
Peer Reviewed Publications: A Trust Issue

28 April 2016
A Cathartic Therapeutic Moment

11 March 2016
Gateway to Consciousness

16 December 2015
Profile of Hatred and Cruelty

9 November 2015
Drivers of Success and Effective Leadership

2 November 2015
A Two-Point Solution

20 October 2015
All Black Rugby: The Eloquence of Applied Neuroscience

8 October 2015
In Mitigation of Limiting Deprivation Determinants

20 September 2015
Lamenting our intellectual malaise

13 August 2015
Respectful Intervention

25 July 2015
The Creative Leadership Zone

16 May 2015
Coaching to Pleasure

6 May 2015
Glowing the Void - Thoughts under a May Full Moon

1 April 2015
Context and Integration

7 February 2015
Add some Awe and become Awesome

11 January 2015
Effective Intervention

3 January 2015
The re-emergence of the right hemisphere

26 November 2014
Where is consciousness?

11 May 2014
A Strong Determinism

15 February 2014
The Physiology of Mindfulness

16 August 2013
The Triple Wheel Combination Model of Value-based Leadership

1 June 2013
Authenticity and Leadership

13 January 2013
The Neurobiology of Empathy

29 November 2012
Neuroplasticity

8 June 2012
The brain as a deterministic blueprint

21 April 2012
That 'Aha' Moment

17 April 2011
Rewarding Value

28 December 2010
The Dangers of Cyber-space

27 November 2010
Enhancing Gratification

23 June 2010
Systemic Degeneration

14 June 2010
Meaning and Purpose

3 June 2010
Medical Challenges