The Power Of The Female Brain
I don’t know if you have ever seen the film – or read the book – The Female Brain? I recently saw the film, and it was funny, and some of it did ring true. The premise is that most things are hardwired into our brains – things like women being better ‘mind readers’ or men being more single-minded.
The book is supposed to be a scientific one (with little evidence of scientific process and much anecdotal evidence), whilst the film is a comedy – a bit like the Woody Allen film of the book – Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex* (*But Were Afraid to Ask).
The reason that the film resonates – is the same reason as situational/observational comedy is generally amusing. Because the observer has also experienced those things. The difficulty is, of course, that nothing is ever as simple as it seems.
We are all victims of subconscious bias and will look for evidence to support that bias.
The Gendered Brain
In a diametrically opposite viewpoint, cognitive neuroscientist Gina Rippon, has written a book called The Gendered Brain. This book “proves” that there is no difference at all between male and female brains, in the same way, that lungs, hearts or livers are no different.
And then again – from a group of scientists from China and California – there was some research published earlier this year which indicated gender-related differences likely exist in the whole-brain range.
“So what?”, you might be saying to yourself at this point.
Well, first – go watch the film – it’s hilarious. And here’s the thing. Like everything in life – what you believe will highly influence your behaviours and actions.
Is there a difference between the male or female brain?
So – whether there is a difference or not in the male and the female brain, is fairly irrelevant, in as much as you think it is. If you believe the “difference” between male and female brains puts you at an advantage/disadvantage in certain situations then that will be the truth for you. Should you believe there is no difference between the male and female brain then you will act accordingly.
Behaviours and actions are bred from beliefs and believes are rubber-stamped and made stronger by those actions and behaviours. It’s a vicious or a virtuous circle – whatever your take on it is.
There has been some evidence to suggest that men are better at solving, for example, a maze puzzle. Whether that is to do with the hard wiring of their brains or to do with what they are brought up to believe who can say? Whereas females are better at remembering all the landmarks on the maze puzzle.
So, what does that have to do with you and your journey as a speaker?
Well, hopefully, it will challenge your beliefs about yourself (if they are negative). There is no brain difference indicated in ANY study which says men should be better at public speaking – or vice versa!
What this IS all proof of is that life is pretty much how you make it, based on what you believe about it (life) and what you believe about yourself.
Is it easy to change your beliefs though?
Not necessarily, but it IS simple. Beliefs change when you want them to change more than you want them to stay the same. And when you have a lightbulb moment about that possibility.
Once you have made the decision, acquiring the skills, knowledge or experience all become possible, and straightforward (if not easy).
10 years ago I would never have believed I would be on stage speaking to thousands and teaching others how to change their lives and get their stories out in a way that changes other people’s lives. And then – I changed my belief. But that’s a story for another day!