Beautiful New Rules to Memory
As a psychotherapist, particularly one who specialises in clinical hypnosis, I have a keen interest in how the brain creates and stores memories. In a joint US and Japanese study it appears that the brain “doubles up” information by creating two memories of events. One memory for the here and now and the other for long term memory. In other words, rather than memory going from the now to the long term it is now clear that there are two distinct memories rather than one. Those involved with the study referred to the findings as beautiful and convincing.
Now the question for psychotherapists is how does this new view on how the brain stores information going to affect our clinical work. Specifically, how will this affect the way we look at client’s memory recall when we are psychotherapeutically intervening? I think the jury is out on that for now. I am personally interested in the implications of this new understanding of the brain when it comes to things like hypnotic regression.
I often tell my students that psychotherapeutic knowledge may not have changed much over the years, but the study of neuroscience and neuropsychology have and it is these changes that we must integrate into our respective practices in order for our work to remain current and relevant.