Thursday, March 25, 2010
From Zero To Panic
The prefrontal cortex (PFC) is in the front half of the brain. It is responsible for our focus, planning, impulse control, emotional control, empathy, judgment and insight. Healthy activity in the PFC leads to conscientiousness, thoughtfulness and a goal-oriented personality. If the PFC is low in activity, it can make a person disorganized, easily distracted and sometimes antisocial. On the other hand, if the PFC is overworked, it can cause anxiety, inflexibility and impulsiveness.
Interesting. Well, I am not inflexible or impulsive, but I do worry about the most idiotic things. Once, when I was about 13, I had a teeny, tiny freckle on my arm that I was convinced was something bad, and I tried to convince my parents that I needed my arm amputated -- now -- before the freckle spread. I couldn't understand why they laughed at me. And when I was about 10, our next-door neighbors belonged to a particular religious cult that believed the world was coming to an end very soon, and they kept telling me to be prepared. Oh, goodness, how many hours did I spend worrying about that? Don't even ask.
For the most part, my set point is fairly easy-going. I'm a creature of habit and and routine. I prefer peace and serenity, rather than chaos, and I want everyone in my life to be the same way. I would prefer folks to be healthy, happy, serene and content every day -- in other words, all of those things that are almost impossible in our modern world.
"Don't worry about the world coming to an end today. It is already tomorrow in Australia." ... Charles M. Schulz