Welcome to Brain Mind Specialist
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines health as “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”.
Therefore a complete sense of well being involves the journey of nurturing our physical, mental ( thoughts and emotion ) and spiritual health.
Total mental health involves not only management of emotional issues but discovering and developing the strengths, abilities and talents which is inherent in every individual.
Brain Mind Specialist is committed to ensure that you attain holistic health which includes physical, emotional,social and spiritual.
“Life is difficult. This is the great truth, one of the greatest truths – it is a great truth because once we see this truth, we transcend it.”
Dr. M. Scott Peck
Dr. Vincent Wong
1) 03-79609021 ( Petaling Jaya Clinic )
2) 03-20312120 ( Kuala Lumpur Clinic )
Courtesy of mural by Ernest Zacharevic
We might not have a money tree, but we can have a happiness tree. Dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin and endorphins are the quartet responsible for our happiness. Many events can trigger these neurotransmitters, but rather than being in the passenger seat, there are ways we can intentionally cause them to flow.
Being in a positive state has significant impact on our motivation, productivity, and wellbeing. No sane person would be opposed to having higher levels in those areas.
Here are some simple ways to hack into our positive neurochemicals:
Dopamine motivates us to take action toward goals, desires, and needs, and gives a surge of reinforcing pleasure when achieving them. Procrastination, self-doubt, and lack of enthusiasm are linked with low levels of dopamine. Studies on rats showed those with low levels of dopamine always opted for an easy option and less food; those with higher levels exerted the effort needed to receive twice the amount of food.
Break big goals down into little pieces — rather than only allowing our brains to celebrate when we’ve hit the finish line, we can create a series of little finish lines which releases dopamine. And it’s crucial to actually celebrate — buy a bottle of wine, or head to your favorite restaurant whenever you meet a small goal.
Instead of being left with a dopamine hangover, create new goals before achieving your current one. That ensures a continual flow for experiencing dopamine. As an employer and leader, recognizing the accomplishments of your team, e.g. sending them an email, or giving a bonus, will allow them to have a dopamine hit and increase future motivation and productivity.
Serotonin flows when you feel significant or important. Loneliness and depression appears when serotonin is absent. It’s perhaps one reason why people fall into gang and criminal activity — the culture brings experiences that facilitate serotonin release. Unhealthy attention-seeking behavior can also be a cry for what serotonin brings. Princeton neuroscientist Barry Jacobs explains that most antidepressants focus on the production of serotonin.
Reflecting on past significant achievements allows the brain to re-live the experience. Our brain has trouble telling the difference between what’s real and imagined, so it produces serotonin in both cases. It’s another reason why gratitude practices are popular. They remind us that we are valued and have much to value in life. If you need a serotonin boost during a stressful day, take a few moments to reflect on a past achievements and victories.
Have lunch or coffee outside and expose yourself to the sun for 20 minutes; our skin absorbs UV rays, which promotes vitamin D and serotonin production. Although too much ultraviolet light isn’t good, some daily exposure is healthy to boost serotonin levels.
Oxytocin creates intimacy, trust, and builds healthy relationships. It’s released by men and women during orgasm, and by mothers during childbirth and breastfeeding. Animals will reject their offspring when the release of oxytocin is blocked. Oxytocin increases fidelity; men in monogamous relationships who were given a boost of oxytocin interacted with single women at a greater physical distance then men who weren’t given any oxytocin. The cultivation of oxytocin is essential for creating strong bonds and improved social interactions.
Often referred to as the cuddle hormone, a simple way to keep oxytocin flowing is to give someone a hug. Dr. Paul Zak explains that inter-personal touch not only only raises oxytocin, but reduces cardiovascular stress and improves the immune system; rather than just a hand shake, go in for the hug. Dr. Zak recommends eight hugs each day.
When someone receives a gift, their oxytocin levels can rise. You can strengthen work and personal relationships through a simple birthday or anniversary gift.
Endorphins are released in response to pain and stress and help to alleviate anxiety and depression. The surging “second wind” and euphoric “runners high” during and after a vigorous run are a result of endorphins. Similar to morphine, it acts as an analgesic and sedative, diminishing our perception of pain.
Along with regular exercise, laughter is one of the easiest ways to induce endorphin release. Even the anticipation and expectation of laugher, e.g., attending a comedy show, increases levels of endorphins. Taking your sense of humor to work, forwarding that funny email, and finding several things to laugh at during the day is a great way to keep the doctor away.
Aromatherapies: The smell of vanilla and lavender has been linked with the production of endorphins. Studies have shown that dark chocolate and spicy foods can lead the brain to release endorphins. Keep some scented oils and some dark chocolate at your desk for a quick endorphin boost.
A version of this article first appeared on The Utopian Life. Courtesy of author Thai Nguyen.
Thai is a perpetual student and teacher. He is currently working on two Masters degrees — one in Mental Health, and the other in Theology. He enjoys sharing everything he learns on The Utopian Life. You can also connect with him on Facebookand Twitter
If you want to plant some tomatos, what do you need? Tomato seeds, of course.
You sow the tomato seeds on a good fertile soil. Provide adequate water and sunshine. You may need periodical dose of fertilizer to further nourish the plant. Wait until it bears fruits. Thus it requires patience. Oh yes! pull out the weeds or unwanted greens which fights for the nourishment in the soil!
So , it is crystal clear that if we provide all the right stuff for the tomato plants, we will have a good chance of a good harvest.
The similarly principle applies to human being. What does a child needs?
According to Abraham Maslow, the physical needs include shelter, protection from physical harm, food and drinks. How about emotional or psychological needs?
From my experience, after interviewing and counselled many individuals, I am absolutely certain and convinced that we need unconditional love and security, unconditional acceptance and personal significance/recognition. In summary, all of us need S.A.S. : S ( security ).A ( Acceptance).S (Significance )
When we feel insecure or lacking of unconditional love, unconditional acceptance or personal significance, we may suffer from anxiety, fears, depression, despair, low self esteem or feelings of inferiority , excessive anger or blame , guilt , bitterness or suicidal tendencies.
The next questions is how do we experience S.A.S. ? or how do we fill up our emotional tank?
For those who are fortunate, they could rely on their family members to care for these vital needs. Some find them in meaningful relationships such as friendships, marriage life or family life. Some may find the need to express compassion to others according to their spiritual belief. Some may find comfort in God’s love. And many more.
It is a personal journey that we need to undertake on our own. That is the reason why the late Dr. M. Scott Peck called the personal journey “the road less travelled”
Bullying : Killing the Human Spirit
The effects of bullying on a young child could be potentially devastating to the emotional self.
I have seen terrible effects of bullying on many of my patients which persisted up to their adulthood. Hence, I firmly believe that young children need to be allowed to express their feelings of being bullied and be guided on how to assert themselves against the bully and be empowered to protect their self esteem and dignity.
Child bully must be taken seriously!
Children who were bullied often suffers from a condition called Learn Helplessness. This term was coin by famous psychologist called Martin Seligman. The child would feel trapped in a cycle of being bullied and feeling powerless and subsequently suffers further bullying by the assailant. Sometimes the child would become a bully themselves as a defence mechanism.
The first step is to allow the child to have a safe place to express his/her experiences of being bullied or abused. Do not be judgmental . Try to empathize.
The child need to be educated about his/her rights for self protection and dignity. Skills such as assertive and communication skills are of great importance. Help the child to speak up. If the bully is resistant to warning, then higher authorities need to be alerted. If necessary, police may need to be involved if there are elements of criminal intimidation or assault.
The child need to be taught and empowered to be a SURVIVOR and NOT a victim.