Red alert to look after those fragile frontal lobes

Today I am busy with the registration process for becoming an affiliate of one of my favourite self-help publishers, who have just approved this blog wooo!!. So meanwhile here’s an excellent guest blog post by Lindsay from over at

Red alert to look after those fragile frontal lobes

By Lindsay’s Lobes 

Today, many work at a frantic rate, and whilst a lot is known and adopted concerning the benefit of keeping fit physically to counter  stress, it’s a different matter when it comes to looking after the executive function of our brains. The frontal lobes are the most recent development of the brain and quite fragile, to be easily damaged by physical or mental trauma.

prefrontal cortex

The frontal lobes developed late in the evolutionary cycle and where we identify our “consciousness” to facilitate “executive decisions” on any number of complex and abstract matters. The downside is, when subject to extreme pressure, we risk losing control to the more primitive older areas of the brain. Initially the two may be in “conflict” until such time as the lower brain may take control. If that happens instinctive type reactions can have tragic consequences.

Hence a loss of control means you are reverting to the older more instinctive areas of the brain which lack the flexibility and higher level thinking available within the repository of the frontal lobes. This can happen a lot easier than we can imagine, if we deprive ourselves of sleep over a long period, or are subject to extreme periods of stress. Under those circumstances the risk is your overworked frontal lobes surrender to the more primitive areas of the brain.

Have you noticed how much evidence we see of this breakdown in everyday existence. Road rage for instance is a good example of the circumstance when a person “blows up” in a fit of rage, but it can occur anywhere when the frontal lobes mechanism breaks down under stress. The first task for any counsellor in such an event is to appeal for calmness. Once a degree of calmness is restored a person can then recover and revert to the executive mechanism of the frontal lobes to rationally deal with the situation to hand.

Fortunately avoiding the likelihood of breakdown is relatively straightforward. Look after those fragile frontal lobes with adequate sleep, a sensible diet and a regular exercise programme. Plan ahead and don’t become “fearful” of deadlines, for it is far better to negotiate a postponement, then to risk the “disaster” of a frontal lobe overload. Make sure you take short breaks at work and wherever possible, discuss matters, rather than e-mail.

When you are talking to someone, your brain begins to buzz, releasing pleasurable feelings similar to endorphins when you exercise. This will happen even when you are in a confrontation situation. Providing you don’t allow your emotions to “take over” you will feel better afterwards. Have you ever noticed, when making presentations to smaller groups, in an interactive mode, how you always feel better than addressing large groups of people when you are in “remote” mode.?

When giving successful presentations to small groups there is the likelihood we are receiving pleasurable stimuli, similar to endorphins, that made us feel appreciative afterwards.

So to all of you who may be  caught up in a frenetic work pattern I would like to hear how you plan to avoid a frontal lobe crash. In the meantime, can I send out a “Red Alert”? -Be kind to those fragile frontal lobes.

They depend on your tender, loving care much more than you imagine.


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