Understanding how our brains function is crucial to improving our behaviour and our relationships at work. Scientists have made huge breakthroughs recently and we can now harness this new knowledge to maximise productivity and make work a better place to be.
The amygdala may only be a tiny part of the brain, but it controls and monitors emotional response. When the amygdala is triggered, it releases chemicals that flood the part of the brain used for logical and reasoned thinking. It does this in order to shut it down.
This enables us to react to danger instinctively rather than intellectually, which is great when you are face-to-face with an emergency, but not so good when you are about to respond to an email.
The influence of the amygdala depends on other factors too – our stress levels and emotional state for example – but the effect is the same. We are not thinking clearly. We just think we are as our emotional response seems reasonable at the time.
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