Neuroplasticity, or the ability of the brain to change itself in response to what it experiences, will be the subject of the second talk to be given by Corinthia Hotel London’s neuroscientist in residence Dr Tara Swart, on February 7 at the hotel.
During the talk, Dr Swart will bring to life the science behind adult learning and habit creation, explaining how we can alter the physical structure of the brain to set ourselves up for sustainable behavior change and stick to our New Year’s resolutions.
Perhaps the best example of neuroplasticity is the change in the brains of London cab drivers who undertake “the knowledge”. By repeatedly memorizing the streets of London, the navigation and memory parts of their brains (in the Hippocampus), physically grow in size and creates more inter-connections.
“By harnessing the power of neuroplasticity you can over-write unwanted behaviors and train your brain to create new neural pathways that correlate to desired behaviors,” said Dr Swart. In the longer term, this leads to a happier, healthier and more rewarding life. “Neurons that fire together, wire together,” said Dr Swart. “Our brain is a ‘use it or lose it’ type of organ.”
Learning a new language or a musical instrument in adulthood can give huge benefits to the brain including enhancing the ability to deal with change or adversity. The brain’s ability to change includes altering our behaviors, as well as our skills, as practice will reinforce new pathways in the brain and weaken old ones.
During the talk, Dr Swart will also touch on epigenetics, the environment’s effect on our genes and lifestyle, which impacts the way our brain works through heritable changes in gene expression. “In other words, we are a product of everything our parents and even grandparents did during their lifetime before they conceived us,” said Dr Swart. “This can mean an increased or decreased resilience to stress, weight gain and can impact our success professionally or personally.”
As the only top-tier leadership coach with both a PhD in neuroscience and medical career as a psychiatrist, Dr Swart works with some of the most successful companies around the world to help their executives to achieve marginal gains in their performance through brain training.
The talk, Can a leopard change its spots?, will be held on Tuesday, February 7, 2017, from 8.30-10:00 am UK Time in the Massimo Restaurant and Bar at the Corinthia Hotel in London.
About Dr Tara Swart
A neuroscientist, leadership coach, award-winning author and medical doctor, Dr Tara Swart works with leaders of some of the world’s most successful companies to help them achieve mental resilience and peak brain performance. Just as athletes train their bodies to be able to perform at an elite level, so leaders can get a competitive edge by understanding and improving the physical condition of their brains. Dr Tara Swart helps them do this. She is the only top-tier leadership coach with both a PhD in neuroscience and medical career as a psychiatrist. Her role as senior lecturer at MIT ensures that she remains at the forefront of the latest developments in her sector. It is Tara’s ambition is to use her knowledge and experience in the field of neuroscience and leadership to help as many others as possible better understand and get the best out of their brains.