The Courageous Podcast

The Courageous Podcast Episode #8: Brain Sherpa Dr. Nicholas Alp

Episode Summary

Dr. Nicholas Alp is the Brain Sherpa! With more than 65 peer-reviewed publications and books, and more than 25 years of clinical research experience, Nicholas has a keen understanding of what makes each of us tick. Nicholas — trained in medicine at London and Oxford Universities with a PhD in Immunology at Cambridge University — joined us from the UK and, in laymen terms, provided color on where our anxiety comes from. In these stressful Covid times, Nicholas thoughtfully shares why we often freeze (or flight) when we desperately wish we could muster up the means and courage to fight. If you ever wanted to know the inner workings of your wirings, this episode is for you.

Episode Notes

2:31 - Initial conversations about courage and evolution

4:30 - What's going on upstairs

5:06 - Nick's background

7:15 - Interest in mental health, human interaction, along with verbal and non-verbal communication

7:53 - Common human needs and desires that drive us

8:59 - To understand yourself you have to understand your mind

8:46 - apply a skill set to the goal set, but what about the mind set?

9:50 - Brains only do two things - receive and process information and then they make judgement's

10:57 - Is it good for me, is it going to harm me, do I like it?

12:03- within our brains is a history of life on earth

15:03 - Deep within our brains, we are nothing more than lizards

15:18 - We are survivors because we are able to recognize and respond to things that are dangerous to us

15:37 - recognize the creatures we are, what fear is for, and how valuable it's been...

15:57 - a lot of those innate fear responses are not always appropriate ...acute fear...turns into chronic anxiety

16:46 - short circuit reactions to get to a better place in our brains

18:08- we are not compelled or destine to respond to every internal stimulus we experience have ... create space between the sensation/ emotion...and our physical and mental response

18:48 - practice expanding "that" space

20:42 - bring your attention to something immediate and infinite your breath

21:39 - Cognitive biases - proximity, intensity, negativity, and confirmation

27:02 - we always have a choice...we must give ourselves space to make a mindful choice

28:09 - daily active practice

29:00 - states of mind and ways you can take action

29:07 - push our fear - understand it, name it, and face it head on

29:41 - find a way to love what you are doing

30:03 - To be grateful and to serve and give

33:17 - Need to belong and connect with other human beings

34:50 - who's on your team and who isn't

37:21 - neurogene's evolving

38:57 - freeze or flight

41:47 - standard operating procedure is nervousness

44:21 - Effective action = focus on the right thing to do, practice, and then persist

45:32 - Be kind to yourself

46:49 - Move your body and get your mind out of that static place

48:20 - Central courage system hack

50:13 - Kind, compassionate and curious

52:26 - Building brain fitness