“In both adolescent and young adult brains, the prefrontal cortex —the processing center of our frontal lobe —is the last part to fully develop, and it is responsibile for complex functions such as planning and organizing, problem solving, memory, attention and inhibition.” —Rich Karlgaard, author of Late Bloomers: The Power of Patience ina World Obsessed with Early Achievement
Gradually with time and thoughtful attention, things begin to fall into place.
Having read the article that was excertped from Rich Karlgaard’s new book (see above image), I am looking forward to reading the book itself as it will be arriving soon, but simply reading the article reminded me that for many of us, our twenties is a transitional period. A period to feel extremely awkward, by which to say, to feel entirely normal considering all that is developing in our minds, let alone trying to figure out how to navigate in the world.
Speaking only from my own experience, upon stepping out of my twenties, my thirties were a time when I discovered what truly excited me and energerized me. It was when I found my voice, not only via the blog, but in relationships and at work as well.
There are many reasons why life for many of us feels as though it falls into place more clearly in our thirties and beyond. Ironically, it is not the targeted age for advertisers in America, because we do become more savvy and knowledgeable not only about the strategies utilized to entice us to buy/act/etc. but most importantly, by what we truly need and want in our lives, and most certainly what is of true value.
Upon having a fully matured mind, we have the opportunity to “connect actions to possible consequences, to see the probabilities of risk and reward” and “our creative yield increases with age” enabling our minds to “evaluate novel perceptions from the right side by comparing them to stored images and patterns on our left side”. Such a capability is not something children or youth are as hardwired to do until their minds have fully matured.
And when you can begin to connect the dots, when you become capable of rationalizing potential, your life experience becomes richer, and your desired goals and outcomes more in alignment with your sincere values and priorities. Thus you begin to see more potential materialize as you know what will energize you as you pursue it and what will drain you.
I was recently given an opportunity to seize that if I had been younger, I may have not seen it for the full potential that it was offering. As well, if such an opportunity had come along in my younger days, I would not have been confident or clear about how it aligned with my priorities, because I wasn’t clear about my priorities.
This is the gem we receive regarding what decisions are best for us: clarity. The clarity that a mature and fully developed mind, when exercised, can contribute to our overall improved quality of life. The choices we may be given, to an outsider, may appear difficult and extremely convoluted, but the decisions actually become easier because we know which ones will involve a potential elevation in our quality of life, and which ones shouldn’t even be considered based on the life we live and wish to continue to build.
Granted, if we’re making decisions with others or for others, it is helpful if they too are of sound and mature mind, but we can only know and control ourselves. But, even our relationships benefit from the gem of a mind that has working soundly.
Ultimately, understanding our minds, how they function, how long the developmental process is and then continuing to exercise it and becoming a master of the amazing machine we have within our skulls is to elevate our lives and yes, achieve our dreams.
We may not know for sure that saying “yes” to a particular invitation or opportunity will lead us to our goal, but we know it is in alignment with making our goal potentially more likely. That is the part of decision-making that our minds help us with – seeing the potential – the good and the bad outcomes, and understanding if we want to take that step.
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~How to Be the Master of Your Mind, episode #20