Mental Health – The Cortex
This is a transcription of my youtube videos the cortex part 2 and part 3
So in previous video I talked about the difference between the cortex and the neo-cortex. Spoiler alert, the cortex is the old part of the brain and deals with impulse and instinct, the neo-cortex deals with logical thought.
The cortex, from what I’ve read, can be affected from before you were born, from the start of mankind, and as I said defies logic.
In the primitive brain, it’s all about survival and that is where you get a combination of your ancestors and your own life experience, it’s also involved in panic.
As an example, I’m going to read/write some words and think about your immediate response.
men in blue suits with brown brogues
Maths lessons at school
Incorrectly using commas
Farting in public
okay, that’s enough of that.
Your response to each of these words will be different and unique to you and is determined by your instincts and your upbringing.
Or as Freud called it, your ID, which is controlled by your cortex and your Super Ego controlled by the neo-cortex.
I think that what we can control is down to how desensitized we are to threats, again both from ourselves and our ancestors. For instance, I like spiders, English Spiders that is, probably not the deadly things they have in other parts of the world for example the funnel web spider in Australia, but I’m rather anxious around dogs. Now to me that seems sensible, spiders are little and tickle when they walk up your arm, but dogs have teeth and can rip your arm off, sensible logic as far as I’m concerned. Proper preservation, but I’ve met plenty of people who, as far as I’m concerned are freaks and oddballs, and they scream and run away at the sight of a spider but will let a dog lick their face, good god.
so the correct answers to the test, because that is what it was are as follows and if you deviated from me in any way shape of form you are wrong and your parents were bad parents and it’s there fault you have to watch a video about depression and anxiety.
Spiders – mild shrug
Dogs – instant death rip you limb from limb
Coffee – thirsty
Formulae 1 – boredom, oh god metal boxes going round and round, good god Football – over paid, lazy, arrogant, wow can kick a ball well, whoopee dooo
James Corden – punch somebody
Thunder- it’s a noise get real
men in blue suits with brown brogues – kill and maim
Maths lessons at school – horny, my maths teacher wore tight jeans, he was alright was Mr Philips, nice bum
Quorn – healthy but why do you cost more than fillet steak, you are a mushroom protein for goodness sake
Lightening – okay, we may die now as I’m standing outside under a tree
Kanye West – ultra violence,
Lions – mild, more dangerous than dogs but not in this country
Incorrectly using commas, die you smug bastards you are the killer of creativity and the reason it took me until I was forty five to realise I could be a writer
Wolves, mild fear but again not in this country
Farting in public – battle between Id and Super Ego, my id says mild relief my super ego says, so wrong
Bacon sandwiches – great smell but I’m veggy,
Me naked – anything other than a queasy feeling in your stomach is viewed as not right and depression is the least of your problems
So back to the learning stuff.
In all situations where the brain perceives threat adrenaline is produced to allow you to access the danger and make a sensible decision about the best course of action.
If the threat is small a small amount of adrenaline is produced and you send messages to the neo-cortex to think about solving the problem
Occasionally, for whatever reason best known to the cortex and your ancestors and probably a bit to do with your life experiences, your body, or more importantly your adrenal gland, just starts to produce adrenaline like it’s going out of fashion.
so when people mention Kanye West I feel extreme rage and want to smash something
I’m sure if you got a time machine and went back through your history and your parent’s history and your parents parents history etc. etc. etc. you’d possibly be able to identify one specific episode in the last billion years when one of your family, in between climbing down from the trees and the fine specimen I see before me now, where someone had the most almighty scare and an unhealthy trend started, and I don’t mean shoulder pads and rolled up jacket sleeves like in the 80’s.
However, there could also be instances in your own past where panic set in and now you have an unhealthy fear of something that can be considered harmless. I’ve know my mother try to get out of a speeding car at seventy miles an hour, that was at the sight of a wasp and not because of my driving.
This is mega panic where the fear of being stung by a wasp even outweighed the danger of jumping out of a moving car. I’ve no idea where the fear came from but it may be covered in my video “How parents can totally f**k their children mentally”.
As we saw before, the cortex determines, mild irritation, anxiety and panic.
So sometimes the cortex can keep you safe but sometimes it can really mess you up. Next I’ll talk about anxiety and depression and how mine interact to really mess with me good and proper.