Box 3 / the place – in your brain – to hang out

by Rod Smith

Move on to the Think Tank (Box 3) where you can get some useful work done.

Box 3 is your Neo-Cortex and it is larger than the stem and the limbic put together. This is the creative, distinctly human dimension of your brain. It governs  – or tries to govern –  the stem and the limbic. It is your “Think Tank.” It’s the Art Studio, the Creative Center. Here you’ll find Einstein posters, wild lists, Far Side cartoons, and drawings reminding you of all the possibilities you have seen for your life plastering the walls. It is from here you engage in creative discussions (“I think therefore I am”) about marvelous possibilities.

This is communication central, the clearinghouse of ideas large and small, this is the funny farm, the place you get your funniest thoughts and ideas. This is where humor, spirituality, appreciation of the finer things in life, and prayer, begin and thrive.

No matter how much you love your pet mammal he just cannot share your spiritual space with you. Like you pet snake, he doesn’t have the brains for it. The developed neo-cortex is reserved for humans only. Visit this, your “seize the day” room as much as possible and try to have all your “thoughts” about your reactions, feelings, and actions walk around this room for examination before you make a move.

Time spent in Box 3 is  – usually –  good for you. It’s your humor center, your envisioning center – it’s a platform of endless possibilities and the place from which you greatness will really emerge.

All three “brain boxes” can be “visited” in an instant. 

Let me illustrate: I enter a shop and search for an item. I cannot find what I need or anyone to help me and I am in a hurry. 

My Stem (the fuse box) wants me to “blow a fuse” and walk out never to return! 

Limbic, which feels abandoned, kicks in. I tell myself, “After all my loyalty. After shopping here for 20 years, you’d think someone would recognize me, and care.” 

Then Cortex pipes up and says: “Ah! You are a bright, resourceful person. As you can see, everyone is busy. You can find anything you need on your own. Seize this great opportunity!”

[I am deeply influenced by Rabbi Friedman, Peter Steinke, and Murray Bowen. All have written profoundly on these matters. Peter’s book “How Your Church Family Works” was my primary influence in revolutionizing how I see and understand my own thinking. I give Peter full credit for any resemblance you may see to his work. While it is neither copied nor “lifted”, one cannot read something and love something so much without it reverberating in one’s work.]

One Comment to “Box 3 / the place – in your brain – to hang out”

  1. Have so enjoyed these articles Rod. They have been so insightful! As are your many others that I have collected over the years. Bless you Pat

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