Humans, like animals, think and act based on a mix of hormones, steroids, and other chemicals. Unfortunately, this means that a lot of our behavior isn’t “in our control” at least not if we act on our first thoughts. Also, parts of our brain are very primitive which makes the situation even worse, as our ancient brains tell us to act like…well…animals. Fortunately, humans have advanced parts of our brains that other animals don’t have, and this gives us much more control over these basic instincts and processes.
And our advanced brains are the problem and solution to human problems. Because of our advanced brains, humans have a large degree of awareness of our animalistic functions. We know that being in love can give us both great and horrible feelings within minutes of each other (such as before a break-up and after). We know that rejection hurts, as does any type of emotional hurt. Lower animals experience pain and suffering, but they likely don’t anticipate it, nor linger on it too long. They also can’t reflect on it and wallow in it like humans can. So yes, our advanced brains can give us awareness of our problems and limitations.
But in addition to awareness, our advanced brains also allow us to do something about our more basic desires. We can be aware of experiencing of them, identify them as either helpful or unhelpful, and possibly even reign them in if necessary. We can get out of situations that give us unhelpful feelings, or even seek out the help of others. We can talk ourselves down, or talk with others. We can even explore the wide range of pharmaceutical chemicals that counter-balance some of the feelings we have. In short, our advanced brains give us a large degree of free-will, which lesser animals could never have.
It isn’t always easy, but being in control is important to being attractive. It is important to being confident. It is important to being happy. We can never really prevent suffering or stop the swirl of chemicals that limits us at various times in our lives. We will always have to contend with fear chemicals, attraction chemicals, and even chemicals that depress us. However, our advanced brains give us perspective and control over the lower parts. Is it always easy? No. Is it possible? Yes.
It is beyond the scope of this article to explain how to control your instant desires and thoughts. However, as always I suggest our book Be Popular Now, as well as Jeffrey Schwartz’s excellent You are Not Your Brain.