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7 Words That Are Your Key To Brain Health

Dr Daniel Amen and Tana Amen BSN RN On The Brain Warrior's Way Podcast

In Dr. Daniel Amen’s new book, Feel Better Fast and Make It Last, he uses a powerful mnemonic to help you remember seven important concepts crucial to your brain health. In this episode of The Brain Warrior’s Way Podcast, Dr. Daniel Amen and Tana Amen teach you the details of how BRAIN XL can change your life for good.

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Dr Daniel Amen: Welcome to the Brain Warriors Way Podcast. I'm Doctor Daniel Amen.
Tana Amen: I'm Tana Amen. Here, we teach you how to win the fight for your brain, to defeat anxiety, depression, memory loss, ADHD, and addictions.
Dr Daniel Amen: The Brain Warriors Way Podcast is brought to you by Amen Clinics, where we've transformed lives for three decades, using brain SPECT imaging, to better target treatment and natural ways to heal the brain. For more information visit Amenclinics.com.
Tana Amen: The Brain Warriors Podcast is also brought to you by Brain MD, where we produce the highest quality nutraceutical products to support the health of your brain and body. For more information, visit brainmdhealth.com. Welcome to the Brain Warriors Way Podcast.
Dr Daniel Amen: Welcome back. Feel better fast. Make it last. We just have two more lessons on this and then we're done.
Tana Amen: How sad for you. You're always sad when you finish. Then you're on to the next one.
Dr Daniel Amen: I have you, so I will be able to deal with it. You are the treatment for my sadness.
Tana Amen: Okay. Let's see. This is from [Dawn Vincenti 00:01:24]. Really good coaching basics and the reason they work. This should be required learning for all. Thanks Amens. Simple, but I like that.
Dr Daniel Amen: This is required, so don't turn us off. We're gonna do a little summary of feel better fast and make it last. We're gonna do that in the context of seven tiny habits. When you think of the brain, the B in brain excel, what is the tiny habit that's the most important?
Tana Amen: To protect it.
Dr Daniel Amen: It's asking your question. Is this good for my brain or bad for it.
Tana Amen: Right.
Dr Daniel Amen: Do you remember when Chloe was little, and I would do this with her?
Tana Amen: Yep.
Dr Daniel Amen: That was so much fun.
Tana Amen: Yep.
Dr Daniel Amen: For me.
Tana Amen: That question's probably the most simple.
Dr Daniel Amen: She was intense and verbal.
Tana Amen: We ... You. Well as you like to say, we have effectively instilled an anxiety disorder in that child.
Dr Daniel Amen: To do the right thing.
Tana Amen: Yes.
Dr Daniel Amen: Right? People who have low levels of anxiety, die the earliest from accidents and preventable illnesses. They're not forward thinking. That's what your pre-frontal cortex does. That front third part of your brain, largest in humans and any other animal by far, 30% of the human brain, seven percent of [Aslan's 00:02:57] brain ...
Tana Amen: Right.
Dr Daniel Amen: Are white shepherd. Three percent of [inaudible 00:03:01] brain [crosstalk 00:03:02] are cat.
Tana Amen: We say that, you know, sort of flippantly. It's kind of, a joke. The reality is, teenagers don't sometimes have enough anxiety. With her, it's not like ... We joke about the anxiety disorder. She's anxious about the right things. She's anxious about getting good grades, she's anxious about getting in cars with certain people, she's anxious about hurting herself, she's anxious about doing things that will harm her. Drinking, smoking pot, all of those things. She knows ... She's always [crosstalk 00:03:37] thinking consequences.
Dr Daniel Amen: What happened when you took her to the Poison concert?
Tana Amen: Oh my God, it was so funny. I took her to a concert. This was an, 80s rock band, right? I thought we would just have this mother/daughter thing, cause it's like my music. The first thing she did, she was horrified. She looked around at all the mom's going crazy. She's like, "Is this what you do when you're not with me?" I'm like, "No. I don't do ..."
Dr Daniel Amen: Weren't they twerking?
Tana Amen: Yes. She goes, "If I ever see you twerk it, I will kill you myself." I almost died. I go, "I don't twerk. I promise you. I do not twerk." And then, all of a sudden ...
Dr Daniel Amen: I'd like to see that.
Tana Amen: Shut up. Okay. Erase, cut, edit. No. Just kidding. Anyway, the guy next to us, all of a sudden he lights up a joint and starts smoking pot. She had never been to a concert where anyone smoked pot. She always, been to these concerts where it's just like, kids mostly. This was her first kind of hardcore rock concert. She freaked. I've never seen my daughter jump that high. She literally jumped over the seats, jumped over the seats, grabbed her nose and took off running down the aisle. She's like ... She goes, "I'm calling Danielle. I'm calling Danielle." I go, "Why are you calling Danielle?" She goes, "Because I'm gonna tell him. If my brain scan turns out bad, it's not my fault. It's your fault."
Dr Daniel Amen: She has it. Is it good for my brain or bad for it.
Tana Amen: Yep.
Dr Daniel Amen: The R in Brain Excel is rational mind. It's managing the hoard of ant [crosstalk 00:05:14] infestations that drive unhappiness ...
Tana Amen: Yep.
Dr Daniel Amen: and anxiety and fear and strife and marital trouble. The tiny habit for this, is whenever you feel sad, or mad, or nervous or out of control, write down what you're thinking. Write it down, because when you write it down, you get it out of your head. When was the last time you felt really irritated?
Tana Amen: Oh, just two days ago. Really irritated.
Dr Daniel Amen: What was the thought?
Tana Amen: Oh no. Yeah. I don't wanna say it out loud.
Dr Daniel Amen: What is the PG-13 version of the thought?
Tana Amen: No. I was frustrated with my mom. I was really frustrated with my mom. I felt like my moth ... I was angry at my mom for not taking care of herself, for putting other people before her family, for not taking care of herself.
Dr Daniel Amen: What was the thought? She doesn't take care of herself?
Tana Amen: That she puts everyone else before she puts her family. I could all the way back in my life and I kept coming up with lots of evidence.
Dr Daniel Amen: Okay.
Tana Amen: Yeah. Other people are more important than her family.
Dr Daniel Amen: In the book I actually teach a process that you know, really well, about when you're angry you don't wanna do it, cause you're stubborn.
Tana Amen: I was pissed. I was really pissed off.
Dr Daniel Amen: If you want to feel better ... There's a choice. You always have a choice. You can feel pissed off. If that's your choice, have at it.
Tana Amen: Right.
Dr Daniel Amen: Enjoy it ...
Tana Amen: I had lots of evidence. She makes herself sick.
Dr Daniel Amen: or, you can question it.
Tana Amen: Right.
Dr Daniel Amen: This is very important. Some people want to hold on to the unhappiness because it's what they're used to.
Tana Amen: Right.
Dr Daniel Amen: They-
Tana Amen: I don't.
Dr Daniel Amen: They carry a flag around their house, with the, I am unhappy, I'm going to hold onto this thought. When they question it, when they really go, "Is that true? Is it 100% true?" They realize that these negative thoughts drive headaches. They drive [crosstalk 00:07:30] tiredness. They drive unhappiness.
Tana Amen: I felt terrible.
Dr Daniel Amen: You just don't have to have them.
Tana Amen: Right.
Dr Daniel Amen: You need a method. Feel Better Fast, I have the method. We've talked about it here on the podcast. The A is attachment. The little tiny habit is, does my behavior serve my goals? Does it fit? First thing you have to do ... I had a teenager in my office yesterday, who was not being nice to her mother. I said, "So, what's your goal with your mom? What kind of relationship do you wanna have?" She's like, "What kind of question is that?" It's like a really good question.
What kind of goal do you wanna have? It stopped her. She backed up. She said, "I wanna have a good relationship with my mom." I said, "Is your behavior getting you what you want?" See, the father and grandfather in me, wanted to chew her out. She was being rude. That doesn't work, right? The only thing that would do is separate her from me. It's better, always to go, "What do you want?"
Tana Amen: How do you get it?
Dr Daniel Amen: I'm very clear, what I want with you. Kind, caring, loving, supportive, passionate.
Tana Amen: See, now the responsible part of me is, did you ask the mom the same thing?
Dr Daniel Amen: Of course.
Tana Amen: Okay. Parents sometimes just do stupid stuff.
Dr Daniel Amen: I knew. I have your voice in my head ...
Tana Amen: Yeah no. Parents do stupid things.
Dr Daniel Amen: judging me. I have your voice in my head judging me. The little tiny habit is, does it fit? Does my behavior fit the goals I have for my life? You have to know what your goals are, right? That's why the one page miracle, where you ask yourself, "What do you want in your relationships for your work, for your money, for your physical, emotional, spiritual health. What do you want?" When your behavior doesn't fit, then you have to go, "Well, how do I act in ways that get me what I want?" It's not selfish. Too many people think, that's selfish.
Tana Amen: No.
Dr Daniel Amen: It's effective. That's what I want for you.
Tana Amen: Yeah. See, that's what I was frustrated with my mom for. That's what I was frustrated about. I, before I could even get to the point of asking, "Is it true ..." I had to pray and meditate for about an hour, and then I could do the whole, "Is it true," thing. And then, I found the right way to talk to her about it, in a way she could hear it.
Dr Daniel Amen: You actually had a beautiful conversation.
Tana Amen: I did. She just listened. I'm like, "Wow." That was big. She was sad.
Dr Daniel Amen: Did you feel how powerful you were?
Tana Amen: Yeah. I felt how much she wanted to be part of the family, she wanted to be ... She doesn't do it because she ... She thinks she's doing the right thing always. Right? She doesn't do it because she thinks she's a bad person. She does it because she's being a good person. She just doesn't see it from the way other people are seeing it.
Dr Daniel Amen: Right. Communicating with her in a way she could hear it ...
Tana Amen: Right.
Dr Daniel Amen: rather than attacking her.
Tana Amen: Right.
Dr Daniel Amen: It's just a bit more effective.
Tana Amen: Significantly.
Dr Daniel Amen: Under inspiration, does this feeling or action have eternal value?
Tana Amen: Right. That's my favorite question on the planet, on the planet. Immediately, for me it diffuses what I ... You know, if I break my computer, crash a car, it doesn't matter, as long as the people in my life are not hurt, I'm able to immediately diffuse the anger that I feel for the most part.
Dr Daniel Amen: Under nourishment, the N in Brain Excel, do I love food that loves me back? What's your relationship like with food?
Tana Amen: Yep. Absolutely. I would add to nourishment. I mean, we've already been talking about it. All of this is nourishment for your brain. What thoughts are you putting in your head too? How are you nourishing your soul and your body, and everything.
Dr Daniel Amen: That happens more than just with medications or supplements or food.
Tana Amen: Absolutely.
Dr Daniel Amen: It happens with the [crosstalk 00:11:53] people, the people.
Tana Amen: Like when I had that splitting headache, driving back in the farming community. I just wondered how people live.
Dr Daniel Amen: It's a cause of mental illness.
Tana Amen: How do people live in those communities safely?
Dr Daniel Amen: There's a higher incidents of emotional learning behavior problem.
Tana Amen: So sad.
Dr Daniel Amen: The X factor. Well, we learn from imaging. The question is, if I looked at my brain, would it be healthy or not. If not, well, what am I going to do about it? In Feel Better Fast, we give you the whole bright minds approach to do that. My favorite part about the new book, is the last chapter, which is actually fairly short, it's about love. Does my behavior show that I love myself and others? Doing the right thing is never about you, should do the right thing. It's about you do the right thing, because you love your life, you love your wife, you love your mission, you love your purpose. Quite frankly, I love you. I wanna extend this.
Tana Amen: You know, it's so interesting to me, that the bible ... The repeatedly talks about the most important commandment being love. I mean, most religions talk about love.
Dr Daniel Amen: Most religions, it's [crosstalk 00:13:10] love God with your heart, mind and soul.
Tana Amen: Love is more important than anything.
Dr Daniel Amen: Love your neighbor as yourself.
Tana Amen: We're not good at that naturally. We have to work at it.
Dr Daniel Amen: If you're not, loving your neighbor, you're really not loving yourself.
Tana Amen: We're not naturally good at this. We need to work at it. It's just ... I think that's why it's a commandment. Right?
Dr Daniel Amen: If you said it, I believe it. Stay with us. Thank you for listening to the Brain Warriors Way Podcast. Go to iTunes and leave a review. You'll automatically entered, into a drawing to get a free signed copy of the Brain Warriors Way and the Brain Warriors Way Cookbook, we give away every month.