Learning for life

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Until we have a need to access professionals who can ‘fix’ us, healthcare’s all a bit fuzzy and indistinct in our minds. We’re built to not spend time on things that aren’t immediately concerning to our continued existence. We imagine if at all, everything will be working in our favour. Caregivers at all levels from consultants to care assistants are there primarily for our benefit. This article from the American Academy of Neurology explains why that may not always be the case.

It’s heartening to see this acknowledgement from a trusted player in the field. Some of the ground troops of various chronic conditions have had questions along these lines for a good few years.

One of our foundations in life is no longer the reliable anchor we once assumed it was. We have spent perhaps decades taking our health for granted. We are now calling on the skills of others to help us however they see fit.

We can choose to take a passive role in our functioning day-to-day but we are now given the opportunity to think differently by learning lots of new stuff. A lot of stuff we assumed was safe as houses we have now learnt, isn’t. Post 2008, is not the time or place to question that particular truism.

Here is one TED talk that highlights the vested interests involved in developed nations’ unquestionable truths about human nutrition.

Reading for ourselves is different now we’re not at school (honestly). For a start, we don’t have to do any of it if we don’t want to. We don’t have to hand our books in to be marked. No one is asking us to do it, we are doing it for the benefit of ourselves.

Doing this sort of activity luckily, is very good for our brains. In this 11 minute talk, Sandra Chapman PhD highlights how our brains relish and thrive on feeling challenged. When given something to get its teeth into our brain will do its best to rise to that challenge and become smarter and more effective which ultimately ends up benefitting us (Sudoku it seems isn’t the answer).

Here is another TED talk giving a refreshing, scientifically backed up way to look at how to change behaviour. It’s not suggested we rely on willpower rather, research has been undertaken to look into methods which allow us to be more aware of ourselves. In it Zoe Chance, a tutor at Yale University in the US lists the 5 qualities an activity needs to possess to have a chance at becoming habit forming. We are all works in progress so if we want to change something about ourselves, we can.

TED talks are great for taking (usually) less than half an hour of our life to tell us stuff we didn’t know and may well help make life a little better. I have a link to this particular TED talk somewhere else on this site. It’s such an important and relatively easily addressed area of our lives. Getting better sleep to reap a better experience of life is within most of our grasps. It all depends on how much we want it.

 

Author: deezll

I have spent half my life with a chronic disease and have spent a fair amount of that time addressing some of the common symptoms that a long term condition can bring. Living well is a smart choice and we all know it makes sense.

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