During my commute, I heard a broadcast on the same subject as my most recent blog post. It was about that huge impulse to flee that sweeps over us and can make it nearly impossible to stay focused on our writing. That impulse can stem from our brain’s attempt to protect us from the lions and tigers of our evolutionary past.
What I heard on the radio was a discussion about how our so-called Lizard Brain also has inordinate power over our financial decisions. We don’t save for retirement, or so the idea goes, because our Lizard Brain tells us to take the money and run. We need that money now.
The Lizard Brain pushes us to make impulsive choices that are exactly in opposition with what would best serve us financially, socially, academically.
Terry Burnham, economist/biologist and author of “Mean Markets and Lizard Brains,” says that the Warren Buffetts of the world “have systems in place to not allow their lizard brain to bankrupt them.” The Warren Buffetts “use discipline, . . . team approaches, a whole range of tactics to constrain their instincts and their emotions.”
So the next time you feel the unrelenting urge to escape from a particularly challenging moment in your writing project, stop a minute and recognize the impulse for what it is. Decide whether the Lizard Brain is going to be in charge. Better yet, don’t wait for the Lizard Brain to wield its power, but be prepared like Warren.
Keep in place an array of strategies to choose from in order to waylay the mighty Lizard Brain.
Best to you,