A highly curious and self-educated person, 66-year- old Mike Baxted heard about neuroplasticity, and wanted to learn more. His curiosity eventually led him to online videos of Posit Science’s founder, Dr. Michael Merzenich, and his lectures on the potential of the adult brain.
“I like to say that the news that the brain is plastic is the best news since Jesus Christ!” Mike says. That’s because he had been taught that he wasn’t smart; he had dropped out of high school after a childhood of abuse. He assumed his brain was fixed. Learning it could change was a “great revelation” for him.
Once he learned about plasticity and Dr. Merzenich’s work, he signed up for BrainHQ and spent quite a bit of time training his brain—about an hour a day, every day, for a few months. “My memory is so much better,” he says. “It used to be you could say your name, and ten seconds later I wouldn’t know it. That has changed.” He also notices a distinct improvement in his focus and attention.
What might be even more important, though, is that BrainHQ has enhanced Mike’s performance in other practices that are part of a great process of self-improvement. “I believe that if the brain is enhanced, the body will follow. And that’s what I’ve seen.” He believes BrainHQ strengthened his focus and awareness in ways that improved his ability to meditate, which in turn helped him break unhealthy habits and improved his physical health. When describing his goal, he says: “I’m learning to write my future to my highest and noblest aspirations.”
A cab driver in Anchorage, Alaska, Mike says his job has even gotten better. “I am exponentially more alert, attentive, present, and thankful, which results in a safer and better experience for my customers and myself,” he says. “It’s amazing to see what the brain can do.”
Right now, Mike is slowing down on his BrainHQ training for a few months while he masters the art of juggling—another brain-building activity Dr. Merzenich suggests. He’s up to about 20 seconds, and wants to build up from there. Then he intends to get back to BrainHQ and take his performance up a notch.
Here at BrainHQ, we think he’s pretty inspiring.