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Title:How neuroplasticity helps us shape who we become | André Vermeulen | TEDxJohannesburg

NOTE FROM TED: This talk, which was filmed at an independent TEDx event, appears to fall outside TEDx’s content guidelines. The speaker’s claims around neuroscience and energy are not supported by credible scientific evidence. The guidelines we give our TEDx organizers are described in more detail here: Is it possible for us to rewire our brains? Yes, says neuroscientist André Vermeulen. Take his example of a woman in China who was admitted to hospital because of a neurological condition. Tests revealed that, astonishingly, her brain was missing a cerebellum – a part of the brain that gives us balance, coordinated movement, and controls certain aspects of our speech. The cerebellum is also home to fifty percent of the brain cells of humans, so it’s clearly not an insignificant part of our physiology. Amazingly, other than some persistent nausea and vertigo, the woman led a functionally normal life. So, how did her brain compensate? How was it possible that someone could have a relatively full life with half of their brain cells missing? Well, according to André, the brain has a remarkable ability to rewire itself, and it does so specifically so that we can survive and thrive in our worlds. All we need to do is put in the time and intensity that it takes to carve new neurological pathways, that will lead to our desired outcomes, and allow us to out-think our circumstances. This phenomenon, called neuroplasticity, means that it is possible for our brains to replace old negative behaviour patterns with new constructive alternatives, whatever they are. André drives the point home with a list of the three things we need to do to change our brains. By taking control of our thoughts, he says, we can shape who we become. Dr. André Vermeulen is founding member and CEO of Neuro-Link, a boutique consultancy utilizing applied neuroscience to develop talent, increase performance and maintain wellness. He is a global thought leader in how neuro-agility can improve performance. André has developed and patented cutting edge neuro-agility assessments and applied neuroscience learning solutions that are used by children in education, and adults in business and sports across the globe. He has published more than 43 leading articles on the development implications of the brain and mental health. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at


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