Explained in an interview on Cultural Brilliance Radio! The Neuroscience of Change with Dr. David Krueger

The concept of Mind Over Matter….

Claudette:           One of the concepts I was struck by in your presentation was the idea of mind over matter. Can you share more about that concept with us?

David:                   Well there’s so much of what we do on a day-by-day basis that has to do with how we both resist change and how we have challenges with change in a number of ways.


We stay in our comfort zone.

Fear of the “new”.

Why change is difficult, is in our minds and part of the answer is, it’s in our brains as well. A good example is: the hypnotherapist Milton Erickson told a story in which whenever it snowed he would be the first to get up and go to school so that he could create a fresh path in the snow. He intentionally created a really circuitous path, zigzags, indirect turns and he noticed that each person who followed him followed the same path until the end of the day the path was really well worn despite its really circuitous route and even though he did this a number of times and got even more diabolical in twists and turns not a single person created a new path that was more direct.

This is how neural pathways are laid down in the brain by early experiences then repeated until their edge more deeply even if they don’t work as well. So, to think creatively we have to create new neural pathways outside the cycle of experience and stimulation for a new insight.

Understanding how the mind in the brain works….

David:                   So many of the principles and the strategies that we apply for change are contrary to how the mind and the brain work so once there’s an alignment it can be dynamite in a good way.

To give you an example of that and incorporate what we had talked about just briefly about what we know from neuroscience now,

the majority 90 to 95 percent of our operating systems are unconscious,

what that means is that we may create a conscious logical surface story such as “I want to generate more income and create wealth.” But because of the algorithms that have been laid down from very early on about the meanings of money and various things, a shadow story that can be up to 90 or 95 percent contributory here can go in the opposite direction and not even be conscious for example.

The emotional part of our brains process information significantly faster than the conscious, logical, intellectual part of our brain.

emotional brain claudette rowley cultural brilliance

So, whenever any stimulus comes in immediately to the midbrain. It’s sorted by the Amygdala and then passed on to the hippocampus to assign meaning. This is the location of the unconscious whenever psychoanalysts talk about the unconscious this is where it is. It’s in the midbrain, the lower hippocampus that has lose creativity in memory it assigns meaning and then that stimulus is passed to the prefrontal cortex to make it logical and conscious and sensible. So you see how this takes a little bit of time it takes several seconds neuroscientist and especially neuro economists now know that we make decisions especially purchase decisions several seconds before we’re even consciously aware of them.

That’s why things that we do at a corporate level and heeding cultural experiences within an organization has to have an identity and it has to resonate with the individual identities of the people there or it really won’t be subscribed to.

Claudette:           Understanding the neuroscience of change can help us intentionally create organizational cultures that support people.

David:                   Because what we know now in neuroscience is that belief in someone transforms a state of mind in the recipient to more of a creative integrative state. In other words believing in somebody’s state changing for them and when somebody is in a state that is more synthetic and integrative and creative they’re able to do and be different things. They’re transported to places they never would have gone before.


To listen to the podcast and full interview with Claudette Rowley and Dr. David Krueger visit: Cultural Brilliance Radio on Transformation Talk Radio!