The Pre-Frontal Cortex is the executive part of the brain – the supervisor. It controls attention span, perseverance, impulse control, self-monitoring, critical thinking, learning from experience, organization, and it governs interaction with the limbic system, regulating emotions. Found underneath the forehead. Bryan continues to talk about Dr. Daniel Amen’s research on brain anatomy.
PFC guides directs and focus behavior. It helps us govern dogs of distraction, Bryan says, and is the watcher who filters sensory input from the outside world. It gives you the capacity to make goals, to plan, and to bring structure to your life. Critical thinking and organization are vital functions of the Pre-Frontal Cortex.
Emotional trauma and pain can stunt the development of this part of the brain. Bryan states that he had an over-active limbic system during adolescence, something that is typical in the developmental process, before the Pre-Frontal Cortex can begin to keep it in check. 7:38
The development of the Pre-Frontal lobes are integral according to the field of brain science. Bryan relates his experiences in the performing arts as having given him an outlet. He talks about multiple intelligence, meditation as a means to re-wire the brain, and illustrates examples of patterns of behavior found in people who do not learn from their mistakes.
You don’t have to continue to live with the brain you were born with or that was conditioned by social means. Bryan also talks about some examples of what happens when the Pre-Frontal Cortex is damaged or when someone has a stroke, for instance. The emotions felt in the Pre-Frontal cortex are more evolved than those that come from the Limbic system.
Animal and “dog-like” behavior such as reactivity, readiness to attack, acting from ingrained instincts or fears, and lack of domestication is typical of someone living out of an over-active Limbic System.
Short term-memory challenges, distractibility, attention span, hyper-activity, poor time management, procrastination, mis-perceptions, and disorganized patterns of behavior are prevalent in those who have stunted development in the Pre-Frontal Cortex.
Those with brain damage and severe trauma may never reach the capacities that someone with a healthy brain may have. Attention Deficit Disorder and Schizophrenia are examples of disorders related to poor regulatory functions that the Pre-Frontal Cortex is responsible for. Psychotic disorders are also typical for those who have troubles with this part of the brain.
The way dogs perceive and act are symbolic for those who don’t have a developed Pre-Frontal Cortex.