How Stress Rewires Your Brain and What You Can Do About It

How Stress Rewires Your Brain and What You Can Do About It

We’ve all heard the phrase, “get your creative
juices flowing.” Weird as it sounds, there may be some truth
to the term, “creative juices…” which I will stop saying right now,
because it feels weird to say. Meet BDNF, also known as
Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor. BDNF isn’t a synthetic creativity juice you
can just grab at Costco. The role of BDNF is stimulating, maintaining,
and supporting neuronal growth in your nervous system, helping make
more connections in your brain. Those increased synaptic connections can help
you get out of that creative rut. And how is it released? Exercise! And I’m not talking Crossfit, Zumba, or
Milly rocking on every block. Lighter exercise like walking
can help you get some BDNF in your system. BDNF is integral to processes of learning
and memory, and if you need more proof that it’s important,
there’s significant evidence that Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and
Huntington’s Disease patients have less BDNF in their brains. So getting those levels up early in life could help
stave off those neurodegenerative diseases. Write a little, walk a little. If you get blocked, take a walk. If the juices ain’t flowing,
get up and get going. Honestly, what am I doing here? I should be writing science mixtapes
and selling them in Times Square. There’s so much scrutiny from so many people
into our lives, increased exponentially by social media, that it could be doing damage to our mental health,
increasing psychosocial stress. All of that in turn affects our depression
and anxiety. But, that damage isn’t irreparable. Changing small things about your mindset and
routine can affect you on a neurological level, a.k.a. “neuroplasticity.” Neuroplasticity is exactly what it sounds
like: neuro, “brain” and plasticity, “flexible.” In this case, it means that our brains have
the ability to change and adapt in response to our environment. We can help alleviate these symptoms of depression,
anxiety, and psychosocial stress by changing small things in our routine. It doesn’t have to be a reboot of your
entire life – #NewYearNewMe; it could be a small change that makes things better… #NewYearSameMeButILikeChangedSomeStuff…? That’s clunky, we gotta fix that in post. Hop off social media for a while.
Take a trip. Change your work environment. Cut that messy friend who talks all kinds
of trash out of your life, or stop being that friend. All of these things will not only positively
affect your physical health, like your heart and immune functions,
but also your psychological health. Finally, I cannot STRESS this enough: GO TO SLEEP. If you gotta cut this video off now and go
to sleep immediately, do it. I’ll be here when you wake up. Welcome back! I realize that there’s extenuating circumstances
to getting enough sleep: work and family stuff, being a college student trying to survive in a capitalist society, et cetera. But important things happen in your brain
when you’re asleep. First, cerebrospinal fluid is cleaning toxins
out of your brain while you sleep. The more time asleep, the more thorough that
cleaning can be. Second, it preserves and encodes our memories
in our hippocampus, in turn helping us keep track of our day,
the next day’s agenda, and who owes us money (Steve, I know you saw the Venmo charge, so text me back). Third, it solidifies new information
we’ve learned over the last day. This especially goes out to all my people still
in school – you’ve learned so much information in your last day of classes; just go to sleep
to help remember it, stop playing FIFA, Fortnite, and 2K all night
(yeah, I was you once, I know what you’re doing). These are small tips that have science to
back them up. Try all of these for a month and track your
progress. Did you finish a project? Did you write that supahotfiyah science mixtape
that went double platinum, no features? If so, keep at it, and let’s make #NewYearSameMeButALittleBitBetterThanBefore trend. One mechanism to deal with stress that I didn’t
mention is mindful meditation, which, if you which, if you have a friend who doesn’t shut up in line
at brunch, you’ve probably heard about. But is there ANY scientific truth to that? Check out this episode right here to find
out and while you’re at it, subscribe to Seeker for all new
stories about science, all the time. You know what you like. You know why you’re here. Thanks for watching.

100 comments on “How Stress Rewires Your Brain and What You Can Do About It

  1. Bader Alaraimi Post author


  2. Obedient Zombie Post author

    Pretty well made video. My only complain is when you fumble your words just do another cut.

  3. Mel Christensen Post author

    'Go to sleep'. … I'm taking care of an 8 day old kitten that needs to be fed every two hours. Proper sleep won't be happening for at least a few weeks. But I'm loving this vid. 🙂

  4. Kilgore Trout Post author

    MARMADUKE how you ben mang. komg time no see. you not wif mic no moe? dayum brova i taut you be wif dem foeva. dem wite bitches ova der be all bout it i taut. ohwell gud to see ya bruva you muh dawg maramaduke

  5. ADDAM HUSSEIN Post author

    Hey man, thank you for your hard work on this video. 🙂 you've earned this channel a subscription !

  6. Jason B Post author

    I didn't even remember that I was subscribe to the channel, I don't even see your videos in my feed or nothing

  7. EZ Wins Post author

    Trying to survive in a capitalist society??? what other society would i be watching this in? Communism ain't gonna give me this computer, or a good job, hell i'd probably be starving to death

  8. Vinny ! Post author

    STOP trying to be John Oliver, not everyone can be smart, funny and sarcastic at same time.
    You guys should stick to being smart only.

    Traceeeee? Where are you? I miss watching videos that I actually learned something, instead of be wondering who told this host that they are funny. I was gonna say that I'm not hating, but who am I kidding lol

  9. Victor Tsang Post author

    Relax, slow down, your doing great, speak a bit slower you would have been perfect.

  10. Casper Post author

    do more animations and pictures i used to like that about this channel. less just facecam

  11. Dudeima dolphin Post author

    i like this dude but i thought the Mixtape thing was the writers screaming "HES BLACK!!!"

  12. Arjun Singh Post author

    This guy has a great personality and is doing a good job, but he really needs to slow down and speak more clearly.

  13. mrKreuzfeld Post author

    Lol. That was the first time in the 12 years ive had this account where I subscribed because they told me to 🙂

  14. ɮօʊռċɛ օʄʄ Post author

    What if its too late? 17 years late to be exact..
    How bad IS STRESS?

    Fucking Cunts.
    No one in this hopeless fucking comment section gives a shit.
    It's been 2 weeks! 'tis like i don't exist….which I WISH I DIDN'T

  15. Alex Larose Post author

    Don’t take out the jokes comletely (as they were entertaining), but please decrease the amount told. They were a tad bit distracting

  16. Ben Fluke Post author

    i loved the meta commentary in this vid, don't know why but this time when you referred to me i actually felt referred to.

  17. Oscar Lee Post author

    I don't like this guy. For a science channel, we need someone who can enunciate words better instead of stringing words together.

  18. Hung Ngo Post author

    Seeker must have gotten better with their hires of new writers and producers. Like the new style

  19. Keegs Post author

    I went through huge amounts of social stress when i was young. It slowly pulled apart my sleeping pattern and motivation now i have palinopsia which i believe is caused by it. I never do drugs so i know thats its not caused (generally its considered the only definitive cause of palinopsia but they know it happens outside of drug use).

    Palinopsia causes very weird distortions in you visual movement perception. For instance if the lighting is right and i wave my hand in front of my face at a brisk pace, i see about 5 trails of my hand following my hand. It gives you visual trails and believe me this is something you want to avoid at all costs.


    Im not saying that if you go the same path as me that it will lead to the same place, but all i know is its definitely bad and that is only one example of the seriousness of not giving yourself enough sleep. Don't stress people for your hurting yourself probably more than the situation that gave yourself the stress could have

  20. VAMBRIC Post author

    I keep getting distracted by the bad jokes, and then the video ended. Can someone just tell me the answer to the title?

  21. Abhiney Kumar Post author

    Hey 🙌can u explain why speed of light is same for all observers ?
    And what causes a particle with zero mass to travel at a speed==c?

  22. Striker 121S Post author

    Hey guys you were wrong about the origin of the asteroid belt , it been recently discovered that the asteroid belt was indeed created by a collision of planets.
    Please do a video on that and correct your older video.

  23. Aiddog10 Gaming Post author

    I’m fucking done with BDNF! I’ve heard this too many times in Living Environment (Biology) in school! You saying this word brings back memories of school during summer! stop it!

  24. Rin Post author

    I got called out for staying up late watching this in my phone by the guy I was watching. Lol. I wonder how many other people actually went to sleep when he told them to and woke up to finish the video

  25. Sahil Gupta Post author

    Hey seeker what do u think about Yoga… What will happen if anyone does yoga instead of meditation and all these stuffs to make brain healthier…. Also sleeping a lot makes everyone lazy as per I know ……😌😌.. what do u think… I want that u make a video on it… If anyone in support .. plz like…😬😬😬😬

  26. mtktm Post author

    About sleep – No mention of location. Where I live, this time of year, there is about 2~3 hours of "night" and by that, I mean, moderately dark. The street lights don't even turn on for like 3 months out of the year.

  27. WWZenaDo Post author

    @1:42 – How about "New Year Same Me with Improvements"? Or "New Year Same Me with Some Changes"?

  28. contown731 Post author

    Professional writer here, I swear to you that long walks are a godsend for coming up with ideas.

  29. rwl0323 Post author

    you had me till you stated "living in a capitalist society" as if that is something bad…..

  30. ME ME BRAINY BOI Post author

    He talks a bit fast. Sorry, but English is my second language & I'm struggling to keep up

  31. bamischijfje123 Post author

    Hahaha, I imagine how funny it would be to actually go to sleep when he said so, and wake up with a "welcome back". Well, it's 03:00 am now, I should really get some sleep. Nice video, I like this guy

  32. Lil Tweekerz Post author

    People up here complaining about the jokes, I'm up here like… I didn't get half of them.

  33. Kevin ellazar Post author

    Can we talk about how good of a narrator is this gentleman? Great blocking, facial impressions, and great enunciation.


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