B is for Jill Bolte Taylor: Her Stroke Of Insight

In the well-known video above Jill describes her experience of having a stroke. Here is the description of her talk from the TED web site.

Neuroanatomist Jill Bolte Taylor had an opportunity few brain scientists would wish for: One morning, she realized she was having a massive stroke.

As it happened — as she felt her brain functions slip away one by one, speech, movement, understanding — she studied and remembered every moment.

This is a powerful story about how our brains define us and connect us to the world and to one another.

Following on from the TED talk and a best-selling book, Jill set up the site called My Stroke of Insight. This invites people to describe their experiences of strokes. Here is an extract from the site.


Welcome to the My Stroke of Insight website, an interactive place to read inspiring stories and share techniques on how to create deep inner peace.

These stories of insight are based on Dr. Jill’s interactions with the thousands of people who have shared their anecdotes from insights learned through her book.

Do you practice the 90-Second Rule? How do you take responsibility for the energy you bring into a room? What time of day have you set aside for your whine time? Share your experiences here!


Here is Jill’s introduction to the 90-second rule.

When a person has a reaction to something in their environment, there’s a 90 second chemical process that happens in the body; after that, any remaining emotional response is just the person choosing to stay in that emotional loop.

Something happens in the external world and chemicals are flushed through your body which puts it on full alert. For those chemicals to totally flush out of the body it takes less than 90 seconds.

This means that for 90 seconds you can watch the process happening, you can feel it happening, and then you can watch it go away.

After that, if you continue to feel fear, anger, and so on, you need to look at the thoughts that you’re thinking that are re-stimulating the circuitry that is resulting in you having this physiological response over and over again.

Here is the web site that describes her professional work.


Jill has also spoken at the TEDxYouth@Indianapolis conference. Her topic was The Neuroanatomical Transformation of the Teenage Brain. Here is the description from the TED site.

Our brain is made up of cells and every ability we have is the product of those cells.

What is going on during our teenage years that accounts for the way teenagers feel, think and behave?

This presentation will focus on the neurological transformation of the brain that occurs during the teenage years.

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