Brainstorm: The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain

Brainstorm: The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain

by Daniel J. Siegel MD


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In this New York Times–bestselling book, Dr. Daniel Siegel shows parents how to turn one of the most challenging developmental periods in their children’s lives into one of the most rewarding.

Between the ages of twelve and twenty-four, the brain changes in important and, at times, challenging ways. In Brainstorm, Dr. Daniel Siegel busts a number of commonly held myths about adolescence—for example, that it is merely a stage of “immaturity” filled with often “crazy” behavior. According to Siegel, during adolescence we learn vital skills, such as how to leave home and enter the larger world, connect deeply with others, and safely experiment and take risks.

Drawing on important new research in the field of interpersonal neurobiology, Siegel explores exciting ways in which understanding how the brain functions can improve the lives of adolescents, making their relationships more fulfilling and less lonely and distressing on both sides of the generational divide.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780399168833
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 08/04/2015
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 40,968
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Daniel J. Siegel, M.D., is clinical professor of psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine, founding codirector of the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center, and executive director of the Mindsight Institute. He is also coauthor of Parenting from the Inside Out and The Whole-Brain Child, and the proud father of two children in their twenties.

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The Benefits and Challenges of Adolescence

Excerpted from "Brainstorm"
by .
Copyright © 2015 Daniel J. Siegel.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Part I The Essence of Adolescence 1

The Benefits and Challenges of Adolescence 6

Maintaining the Power and Purpose of the Adolescent Mind into Adulthood 9

Adolescence from the Inside Out 13

Risk and Reward 18

Pushing Away 23

The Timing of Puberty, Sexuality, and Adolescence 25

The Stress and Distress of Our Extended Adolescence 27

Adolescent Transitions and the Centrality of Our Relationships 30

Mindsight Tools #1 Seeing and Shaping the Sea Inside 39

Three Basic Kinds of Mindsight Maps 42

Seeing Inside the Sea Inside 44

Mindsight Practice A Insight and SIFTing the Mind 47

Physical Sight of the Material World Versus Mindsight of the Inner World 48

Mindsight Practice B Mindsight Illuminated 51

Empathy 52

Mindsight Practice C Empathy 54

Integration 54

Mindsight Practice D Sensing the Harmony of Integration 58

When Integration Is Not Present: Chaos or Rigidity 59

Mindsight Practice E Name It to Tame It 60

Mindsight Practice F Detecting Chaos or Rigidity and Balancing the Mind 61

Mindsight Strengthens the Mind, the Brain, and Our Relationships 63

Part II Your Brain 65

Dopamine, Decisions, and the Drive for Reward 67

Family, Friends, and Fooling Around 72

The Purpose of Adolescence 74

Making Decisions 77

"Don't Do It" Doesn't Do It: The Power of Promoting the Positive 80

Integrating Your Brain 81

A Handy Model of the Brain 85

Adolescence as the Gateway to Creative Exploration 89

Creating Collaboration Across the Generations 95

Vulnerability and Opportunity 97

The Remodeling Brain and Flipping Our Lids 101

Adolescence Builds Integration in the Brain 105

The Emotional Lower Brain 106

Hardwired for Adventure and Connection 108

Mindsight Tools #2 Time-In 111

Time-In, Mindsight, and Mindful Awareness 112

Being Present for What Is Happening as It Is Happening 117

Mindsight Practice A Breath Awareness 119

Building Mindsight's Lens 126

Integrating Consciousness with the Wheel of Awareness 128

Mindsight Practice B The Wheel of Awareness 131

Reflecting on the Wheel 136

Part III Your Attachments 139

Safe Harbor and Launching Pad 144

The Ways We Attach 149

The Secure Model 150

The Avoidant Model 151

The Ambivalent Model 153

The Disorganized Model 154

Reactive Attachment 155

Earning Secure Attachment and Integrating the Brain 156

Reflecting on Your Attachments and Making Sense of Your Life 161

Questions for Reflection on Attachment 163 Our Attachment Narratives and the Two Sides of the Brain 168

Avoidance, Emotional Distance, and the Left Side of the Brain 177

Ambivalence, Emotional Confusion, and the Right Side of the Brain 184

Disorganized Attachment and a Dissociating Brain 190

Creating a Safe Harbor and Launching Pad for Adolescents 191

Mindsight Tools #3 Time-Between and Reflective Conversation 201

Making Sense of How Our Models Shape Our Present 203

Mindsight Practice A Reflecting on How Your Attachment Models Shape Your Reflective Conversations 206

Reflection, Integration, and the Origins of Empathy 207

Mindsight Practice B Reflective Conversations 210

The PART We Play in Creating Ourselves in Relationships 212

Mindsight Practice C Repairing Ruptures 213

Part IV Staying Present Through Changes and Challenges 217

Honoring the Person an Adolescent Is Becoming 219

Leaving Home 221

Puberty, Sexuality, and Identity 228

Hooking Up 233

Romance and First Love 235

First Be Present 242

Changes and Challenges to Integration 245

Acceptance, Letting Go of Expectations, and Sexual Orientation 247

Drug Use or Abuse? 261

Returning Home: Reflection, Realignment, and Repairing Ruptures 273

Mindsight Tools #4 The Mindsight Simple Seven 281

Mindsight Practice A Time-In 282

Mindsight Practice B Sleep Time 284

Mindsight Practice C Focus Time 287

Mindsight Practice D Downtime 290

Mindsight Practice E Playtime 291

Mindsight Practice F Physical Time 294

Mindsight Practice G Connecting Time 295

Conclusion: MWe and the Integration of Identity 299

Acknowledgments 308

Index 310

What People are Saying About This

Deepak Chopra

Brainstorm is a must read book for every parent if they want to avoid emotional turbulence in their own lives as their children go through adolescence. It's lifesaving for the whole family. --DEEPAK CHOPRA, MD

Goldie Hawn

Brainstorm is a necessary look at why adolescents do what they do... The information that Dr. Dan Siegel shares is not only invaluable for understanding your growing child's brain, but helps build more compassion and patience. --Goldie Hawn

From the Publisher

"Brainstorm is a must read book for every parent if they want to avoid emotional turbulence in their own lives as their children go through adolescence. It's lifesaving for the whole family."
—Deepak Chopra, MD

Brainstorm is eye-opening and inspiring, a great gift to us all—teens, parents of teens, and anyone who wants a full and rich life on this planet. Daniel Siegel shows how the supposed downsides of the teen years all have upsides, and that the lessons for living that await teens are ones any of us, at any age, can learn from.”
Daniel Goleman, author of Emotional Intelligence
"Siegel emerges as a bighearted writer, fully convinced that we all possess the fundamental virtues to navigate the choppy waters of adolescence, and he is eager for us to set them loose, working with adolescents to cultivate the positive aspects—and he is hugely convincing of the intense engagement and creativity that often accompany this time period in a person’s life. Smart advice...on providing the most supportive and brain-healthy environment during the tumultuous years of adolescence."

“This book is chock-full of cutting-edge knowledge as well as a deep compassion for teenagers, the adults they will become, and the teenagers in all of us.”
Alanis Morisette

Brainstorm is a necessary look at why adolescents do what they do that can put parents in an emotional frenzy. The information that Dr. Dan Siegel shares is not only invaluable for understanding your growing child's brain, but helps build more compassion and patience. A gift for us all.”
—Goldie Hawn
"By the end of this book, the teenager has been transformed from a monstrous force into a thinking, feeling, and entirely approachable human being."

“I strongly recommend Brainstorm to teens and those who care for them.”
—Mary Pipher, author of Reviving Ophelia

“‘You just don’t get me’ is a common refrain from teenagers to their parents and teachers. Adolescents who read this book will discover that Daniel Siegel gets them . . . This respectfulness is why the book works so well as a manual for adolescents, as well as for their parents and mentors.”
Lawrence Cohen, author of The Opposite of Worry

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Brainstorm: The Power and Purpose of the Teenage Brain 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A must read for all. Even if you are not a parent, this book will give you some useful ways to better interact with this population.
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MomsChoiceAwards More than 1 year ago
A recipient of the Mom's Choice Awards! The Mom's Choice Awards® (MCA) evaluates products and services created for parents and educators and is globally recognized for establishing the benchmark of excellence in family-friendly media, products and services. Using a rigorous evaluation process, entries are scored on a number of elements including production quality, design, educational value, entertainment value, originality, appeal and cost. Around the world, parents, educators, retailers and members of the media trust the MCA Honoring Excellence seal when selecting quality products and services for families and children.