By EWA HARTMAN - PhD, Certified Points of You® Trainer, Certified HeartMath trainer, lecturer. Director of the Neuro-Leadership post-graduate program at Łazarski University
Points of You® and neuro-science, or, why it works
Ever since I became a certified trainer of Points of You® I’ve been working with the cards. The more often I work with them the more I appreciate and admire the creators of these tools and the entire process of working with them – Efrat Shani and Yaron Golan. I mostly work in corporations and despite the fact that corporate clients are considered to be difficult the tools of Points of You® have actually worked extremely well in the corporate environment. Workshop participants create new ideas, discover a deep satisfaction with their work, and start to speak with one another. And these are just some of the benefits...
Even since I was a child, I’ve always wanted to be a scientist; someone who creates, experiments and discovers. Someone who reaches places that others have not reached yet…. but I haven't had enough courage to leave everything behind and leave for the jungle or to hole up somewhere in the inaccessible Taiga. However the tools of Points of You® have recompensed me for my unrealized dreams. These tools discover what makes us tick, they reach places that are inaccessible to us and broaden the perspective with new experiences and reflections.
The soul of a scientist that wants to investigate is still in me, so I am investigating … Those who have worked with the POY cards know that the cards yield results…unexpected albeit precise…so I asked, why?... What happens when a picture, a word, or a question appears on the table … Certain responses are brought by neuro-science, for example, what makes a pause so important and what new points of view can give us.
The pause – from a neuro-scientific point of view, certain thought processes can only complete when we compose ourselves. Our brain can buckle under excess of information and be unable to put together what comes to it. That is why, the fact that in the POY style workshops we begin with a Pause, has enormous significance.
Disconnecting ourselves from out brainstorm and falling deeply into music we can lower our cortisol levels, which is a stress hormone, and allow our minds to organize itself. Arrange things, collocate, write out in cards…. Cleaning up creates space for new information that comes along with the first card. Without having cleared our minds out attention remains scattered, and our mind itself won’t know where to start. Elevated cortisol levels disturb creative thinking, making it harder to think outside of the box. Without pauses, the perception of what comes with the cards would be superficial and fleeting, and not very satisfactory for the participants of the process. If you care about a deeper insight, or if the goal of your workshop is innovation, don’t overlook this element, because its significance for the advanced cognitive processes is fundamental.
And then a card…a picture, a word, a question… stimulation in the context of the examined topic. Our mind arranges everything, places it on shelves and works in a pattern known only to itself for so long until it receives new, interesting content which changes the arrangements in its catalog. Without new perspectives we are chasing out own tail. We want different results but we end up repeating the same actions that we always take. When thanks to the cards we discover a new perspective, we create a fresh neural pathway, then another, and another. Widening perspectives literally strengthens our mind and staves off the aging process. The more perspectives, meaning here neural pathways in the head, the easier it is to notice possibilities, the better we handle changes, the better we communicate and dismantle convictions that don’t serve us well. We notice that the world is not as flat as it sometimes seems, and this is what the process of training is all about.
Working with the cards optimizes our intuitive thinking. According to neuro-science, our intuition is a repository of our up-to-date experiences coupled with emotions. Intuition sets off when we have to make some sort of decision and starts working immediately independent of our will. Concentrating on the cards not only allows us to quieten down it also allows us to listen to the signals coming from our intuition.
It looks like this…Our mind evaluates what is going on now through the prism of what has come before and tosses us a tip. These tips are actually symbolic and often manifest themselves like a bodily sensation. In a rush its easy to lose track of them. The act of calming down can be compared to a quiet, smooth surface of a lake – even when a blade of grass falls on it, it creates rings on its surface. What’s more, through a picture or a word, we are supplied with new stimuli that steer our attention to different places. Thanks to that, instead of hearing the same thing we always hear from our intuition in similar situations, we can hear something new for a change.
Working with the cards allows us to communicate. When we communicate through pictures, we share information the other way around using photographs, reflection cards or process cards, we go around the mind’s defense mechanisms which accompany speaking directly. Even the best received feedback could be taken as confrontation, the receivers want to defend themselves against potential unpleasantness that comes about and turns on the mode of fight, flight or surrender.
This state weakens absorbing communication, disrupts memory and makes it difficult to draw conclusions, we can then forget about mutual understanding. That's why we work with Points of You® and strengthen the neuroplasticity of our brains. Let’s give ourselves and others the best gift possible – room to grow.