Intent

I wanted to rejoin our latest theme of neuroplasticity this morning by introducing another basic physiologic principle with huge ramifications. It is called the SAID Principle, and if you have read any of our books or attended any of our professional certification programs, you will have heard a lot about this concept.

In human physiology, the SAID Principle is the overriding law. SAID is an acronym for Specific Adaptation to Imposed Demand. Put simply, this means that the body always gets better at exactly what it practices. We all know this to some extent, but we often fail to consider the extensive ramifications of this principle being true!

From a neurophysiologic perspective, as we learn and develop skill sets, we mold and shape the structure and function of our brain and nervous system via our repetitive, habitual practices. As someone once said, "Neurons that fire together, wire together." In the context of the SAID Principle, what this means is that whatever Demand that we Impose creates a Specific Adaptation that induces both functional and anatomical changes in our brains.

This can be either a blessing or a curse. We must realize that there is one other word in the Z-Health definition of the SAID Principle that applies... Always. In other words, because we are neuroplastic and wired to change and adapt we cannot shut off our adaptations, nor can we choose to only adapt to our better choices. We are always adapting, which means that we must pay close attention to the things that we truly want to excel at.

In our S-Phase Certification we introduce what is known as the deliberate practice model to explain the vital steps in becoming more focused on creating maximal results. If you are interested you can read a great deal about this concept in the excellent book Talent Is Overrated, by Geoff Colvin.

For now, I will conclude by simplifying the deliberate practice process down to one word - Intent. This is a concept that was hammered into me by a famous soldier and world-class martial artist that I trained with for seven years. He constantly reminded me, "It's all about intent." Ultimately, what he was trying to say via intuition and experience was that only practice with a laser-specific intent of improving a certain aspect of a skill would result in world-class results.

As we learn more and more about the brain and the laws that govern our physiology, the more clearly he is proven correct.

Keep moving.

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