OWL Magazine Korea

Park I-cheol: “It’s Not You, It’s Your Brain”

I had the chance to encounter the author Park I-cheol, who always writes the phrase “Happiness is always a choice.” I received his book as a gift. Park I-cheol is known for writing about positive psychology, such as “The Little Prince Who Became a Janitor,” and he also delivers lectures at places like Gangnam-gu Office based on these themes.

“It’s Not You, It’s Your Brain.”

At first glance, the title might give the impression that the book delves into neuroscience, but in reality, the content leans more towards positive psychology than the profound aspects of “brain science.”

In essence, the book summarizes the idea that our thoughts, emotions, and attitudes towards life can change through our minds. By shifting from negative to positive emotions, we can ultimately lead our lives in a better direction.

The author categorizes people’s relationship with their brains into five stages. While everyone starts at stage 1, moving towards stage 4 or 5 can lead to a more comfortable state:

  1. Those who have a brain
  2. Those who study the brain
  3. Those who use the brain
  4. Those who design the brain
  5. Those who teach how to design the brain

The consistent theme throughout the book is that our brain is more like a “control room” than the master of humans. Therefore, understanding how to handle and control the brain is crucial.

The author provides a step-by-step explanation of why we get angry, presenting a calm breakdown:

  1. You expected yourself to be a good person.
  2. The other person ignored you.
  3. You felt strange.
  4. And you got angry.
  5. You expressed your anger.
  6. Both parties became unhappy together.

The point made here is that if you didn’t expect yourself to be a good person in the first place, even if you are ignored, you wouldn’t get angry. If you stop at step 3, you neither get angry nor create an unhappy situation. The implication is that our brain controls itself, and understanding this allows us to avoid unnecessary discomfort and unhappiness.

“Controlling the Brain with Grateful Questions.”

The brain can be influenced by questions, and asking “grateful questions” has a significant impact. The author refers to an experiment conducted in a documentary aired on KBS titled “Gratitude Changes the Brain.” Asking questions like “Can you tell me a happy moment with your parents?” leads to positive energy in communication between students and their parents.

“In the End, Attitude and Happiness are in the Realm of Choice.”

In conclusion, going back to the author’s consistent phrase, “Happiness is always a choice,” it becomes apparent that if we don’t control our minds, we might be dominated by our environment. However, if we remember that we are the masters of our minds amidst the hustle and bustle, we can face life without being dominated and explore our own path.

Perhaps what matters most is our attitude toward life. The difference between seeing a glass half full or half empty is significant. Regardless of the perspective, there are pros and cons, but ultimately, our choices determine our attitude, pointing the way to the direction of our lives.

Book Information:

  • Author: Park I-cheol
  • Release Date: December 8, 2021
  • ISBN13: 9791189521097
  • Yes24: Link