When Spock Met Kirk: Why Neural Integration Helps Relationships

Just for a minute, imagine your brain as two characters from Star Trek. There’s Captain Kirk who is very emotional, the other is Spock who is very analytical.

Now combine them (for you Star Trek fans, this may be difficult, but try).

Marsha Lucas, PhD, author of Rewire Your Brain for Love, and a neuropsychologist with a special interest in interpersonal neurobiology, uses this Star Trek example to talk about the importance of brain integration for improving relationships.

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Brain integration is important for relationships but it can be tricky, especially because our society has a tendency to focus on left-brain analytical functions while downplaying the right-brain, emotional side.

We’ll get into a whole lot more about that as well as many other topics in our interview with Marsha.

You can watch the entire interview Wednesday night as part of the New Brain Science 2012 series, when we’ll also discuss:

  • Why rewiring the brain can help improve sex and regulate the body
  • The neurobiology of love
  • What happens in the brain when we’re afraid
  • How your vagus nerve can help you project peace and safety to the people around you
  • One simple practice that can rewire the brain for serenity instead of fear and over-reactivity

You can listen for free at the time of broadcast, you just have to sign up.

How have you approached brain integration in your work? Please leave a comment below.


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20 Comments

  1. Jeanne Frances says:

    I am 72 and I’ve thought of asking for Aeracept because of my memory loss. I hope to avoid this by practiciing brain exercises. In school I was a memorizer and later in life I became a thinker. Need hellp in both areas now. Jeanne

  2. going to school and learning about brain chemistry

  3. colin r garden says:

    ahatic yoga

  4. Andrew says:

    Many years ago, Dr. Marsha Linehan began work on this very same topic. Her book “Cognitive Behavioral Treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder” states that a synthesis of emotional mind, and rational mind is wise mind. Please see her book for further information. I am convinced that it holds valuable truths for many disorders beyond Borderline Personality Disorder.

  5. linda schauer says:

    More love comes with understanding and knowledge.
    Integration is love at its finest!

  6. jamie says:

    Thank you for this information.I look forward to that broadcast and thank you for working with
    the public…jamie…

  7. Connie says:

    J

  8. Ralph Lewis says:

    If you are interested in affordable OUTCOMES rather than just another expensive, confusing PROCESS method, I highly recommend looking into Robert Smith’s “tapping” work at http://www.FasterEFT.com
    There are over 500 FREE and PRACTICAL “How To” videos on the Internet.
    It’s a true treasure trove.

  9. Richard Kurylski says:

    It may be true, it may be not. Many a time in the relationships the opposites attract. So no neural integration is necessary to “neutralize” those relationships. I suppose that such relationships last longer (don’t quote me on that, it is my feeling) as long as there is some important part in common that keeps the partners together, because both of them feel a sort of completeness in such a situations. Neural integration may only pay disservice to their relationship.

    On the other hand, partners having too much in common usually fail in the long run, because they run out of steam, especially if they are not creative, because there is no Hegelian thesis – anti-thesis – synthesis in their evolution.

    Even specialists in the area of human relationships say that there is no recipe for a good functioning of the couple. The same measures taken may help one couple and be harmful to others simply because we are individual human beings and there are so many variables that even those involved have no knowledge of (subconscious mind or even conscious that escape taking them into account).

    Although since António Damásio (late 1980s) we know for sure that there are no only rational or only emotional people i.e. in other words only with the brain and only with the heart, let’s leave issues of love to the HEART, because after all the human heart is not just a mechanical pump. Brain does not dominate a human being. Neuroplasticity shows that the “heart” can change the brain (Richard Davidson).

  10. Elaine Dolan says:

    My interests are in this topic(insula function in personal/diplomatic interactions), in self-compassion, in attachment (bonding) disorders, in trauma release therapies minus the retraumatization examining the rebuilding of neural networks with timeline therapy, reality therapy, peer to peer counseling (deep listening skills).

  11. kathy says:

    although my company stresses progression of skills/ confidence. Most of my work–over 90 per cent, deals with changing the mindset of the individuals I teach.

  12. The way I heard the Star Trek characters categorized was in terms of 4 Myers-Briggs traits: Spock = Thinking (That would not be logical, Captain)….. Dr. “Bones” McCoy = Feeling (He’s Dead, Jim! He’s DEAD!!!) ……. Scotty = Sensing (She can’t take any more, Captain….Weve got to have more dilithium crystals!) ……Kirk = Intuition (I’ve got a hunch ….What if… they’re … NOT Romulans?!)

    P.S. Good work, Marsha!
    —-Your friend, Sandra “Bones” Hutton

  13. How do you help the highly emotional person to calm down and the intellectual person to feel empathy and access his or her own emotions?

  14. Paula says:

    A minor point of clarification in the Star Trek analysis is that it was Bones (the doctor) who was the right-brained emotional character, and Captain Kirk represented the integration of right and left hemispheres, playing the mediator between Spock and Bones.

  15. Joni Polehna says:

    I am a Licensed Brain Gym(R) Consultant/Educator, and the underlying principle of Brain Gym(R) is that we shut down to using only our “lead” brain when we are feeling threatened, uncomfortable or stressed. That is, we use only 1 side…left is detail, analytical; right is big picture and emotional. This comes from caveman biology, and we still have that program today. Brain Gym(R) uses PACE, 4 little movements to calm us down and open both sides of the brain to relax into our “natural state”. Caveman went into fight or flight to survive–and he ran or fought–and then calmed down to his natural state again. We don’t fight or run in response to stress, we suck it up and bury it in our system, so don’t calm down, and stay stressed for long periods…this wears out the body and doesn’t allow us to function at our best and using our potential. GOOD STUFF!!!

  16. I am interested in this topic.

  17. I am very interested in this topic.

  18. Mable says:

    Its truly eye opening. Would like to know more on this issue.

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