Use Your Mind to Change Your Brain and Your Life: Interview with Rick Hanson, PhD

This week is part two of my interview with Rick Hanson, PhD, neuropsychologist, and we talk about how to use your mind to change your brain so that you can live a happy life.  Rick is author of Just One Thing and Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Love, Happiness and Wisdom. 

Rick is one of my favorite people to talk with about the mind/brain and how we’re wired.   He is a practicing Buddhist and served on the Board of Spirit Rock Meditation Center for nine terms.  Rick is a graduate of the Community Dharma Leader training program, and leads weekly meditation groups in San Rafael, California. For more information about Rick or his teachings, visit

What I love most about this interview is the discussion about women and how women are wired.  Hanson said the great psychologist Carl Jung (I’m a closet Jungian and love this form of psychology) lived through two world wars.  Carl Jung was asked what was wrong with the world.

“To Jung what was most wrong – the root issue – was the denial of the feminine or suppression of the feminine.”

Hanson said,”Women as a class rarely wage war.”

“Women tend to take a longer view, they’re more focused on nurturance, infrastructure and tend to be less caught up in symbolic causes that lead to war.  The importance of taking care of mothers in the long-term is one of the most highly leveraged investments this planet could make.”

Hanson’s newest book is Just One Thing: Developing a Buddha Brain One Simple Practice at a Time.

In Just One Thing, he gives 52 powerful and down-to-earth ways (practices) to build up a “buddha brain” for more peace of mind in stressful times, greater inner strength and confidence, and an unshakeable sense of contentment and worth.

Rick’s practices are grounded in modern neuroscience, positive psychology, his background in the real world of business and raising a family.  You can use your mind to gradually change your brain and therefore your mind and your life for the better.  Little things add up.  It means taking on a little practice each day to make your mind better.

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Related Posts:

How to Boost Happiness + How We Are Wired for Fear

How to Face Your Worst Fears

Facing Fear is a Victory for Your Soul

  1. Hi Sherold! I’ll have to check out Rick’s new book. Thanks for sharing this! I too find the topic of neuroscience and neuropsychology interesting and would love to see more interviews and postings on how to use your mind to change your brain!

    1. Angela – thank you for letting me know this. I am going to survey my list and ask those of you who want to tell me more about what you want more of. Thank you for letting me know you would love to see more. It’s on my list for more interviews. I appreciate your feedback.

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