Brain Talk - A New Book by Dr. David Schnarch

How Mind Mapping Brain Science Can Change Your Life And Everyone In It

Table of Contents

Brain Talk offers what you need to know about mind mapping and the emerging brain science of interpersonal neurobiology (how interacting with other people affects your brain). Brain Talk is written for the general public in an easy-to-read style and establishes a personal relationship with you. It creates vivid pictures in your mind with attention-grabbing examples, and walks you into powerful new understandings of yourself and the people who populate your life. Reading Brain Talk can be a life-changing experience!

  • Part One explains mind mapping and increases your ability to “read” people and map their minds (and your own). It helps you know what they want, what they are feeling and thinking, and what they are likely to do. Part One also covers mind masking (shielding your mind from being mapped), lying and deception. Brain Talk revolutionizes your understandings of yourself, your spouse or romantic partner, and the other important people in your life.
  • Part Two explores the darker aspects of mind mapping, like traumatic mind mapping and antisocial empathy. Traumatic mind mapping occurs when mapping some else’s mind leaves your mind traumatized. Did you grow up in a troubled home with bad experiences that produced vivid “flashbulb memories” that linger in your mind? Do you have recurring thoughts about someone you’re dealing with who does disturbing things? Part Two helps you understand subtle interpersonal trauma. Brain Talk reveals the short- and long-term negative brain impacts of traumatic mind mapping.
  • Part Three shows you how to repair the negative impacts of traumatic mind mapping and deal effectively with the difficult people in your life. It also shows you how to use mind mapping to create positive healthy interactions with those you love, and ends on an uplifting note.

Table of Contents




Part One: Understanding Mind Mapping31 

Chapter 1: What Is Mind Mapping?32 

The Driving Wheel of Relationships33 

We’re Native-Born Psychologists34 

If You Want Great Sex… 35 

Everywhere, Everyone, All The Time38 

Chapter 2: The Brain Science Behind Mind Mapping39 

Theory of Mind39 

Mind Mapping Is a Survival Skill41 

The Nuts and Bolts of Mind Mapping44 

Mind Mapping Shapes Your Life Story48 

Mind Mapping Impacts Your Brain51 

Chapter 3: Mind Mapping in Children53 

Implicit Mind Mapping53 

Explicit Mind Mapping54 

Enjoy Your Brief Moment of Omniscience56 

Four-Year-Olds: Budding Lie Detectors57 

Little Lie, Big Moment58 

End of Your Privacy59 

See The World Through Your Children’s Eyes61 

Chapter 4: Does Everyone Have Mind Mapping Ability? 64 

Dogs Have Mind-Mapping Ability64 

If children and dogs have mind mapping ability, does everyone?67 

Parents’ Impact On Children’s Mind-Mapping Abilities68 

What if your mother wasn’t mind-minded? 70 

What if you come from a troubled home? 76 

Where do schizophrenia, autism, and Asperger’s syndrome fit in?79 

Mind mapping in children with autism82 

Wait! My Husband Has Mind-Mapping Ability?!83 

Chapter 5: Mind Mapping in Adult Life86 

Mind Mapping in Marriage86 

Mind Mapping and Sexual Desire89 

Mind Mapping and Sexual Dysfunctions92 

Mind Mapping in Affairs94 

Singles and Mind Mapping96 

There’s a Whole Lot More Going On Than You Thought97 

Chapter 6: Mind Masking: Defeating Mind Mapping99 

Second Level of Mind-Mapping Ability: Mind Masking99 

Why do people mask their minds?100 

People from bad homes develop terrific mind–masking ability103 

What does it take to mask your mind? 104 

Mind masking in adult love relationships105 

Third Level of Mind-Mapping Ability: Implanting False Beliefs106 

Good therapists need to be good liars107 

Fourth Level of Mind-Mapping Ability: Mind Twisting108 

Chapter 7: Do You Know Your Own Mind?111 

Our Selves Are Connected111 

Sources of self-knowledge112 

Reflected sense of self113 

Perceived Specialness of Introspection115 

Fallibility of Introspection116 

Distortions in mapping your own mind118 

Ways of fooling yourself118 

Other People Know You Better Than You Know Yourself120 

You Can Be Right About Your Partner But Wrong About Yourself121 

Did you marry a complete lunatic? 122 

Part Two: Problems of Mind Mapping125 

Chapter 8: Traumatic Mind Mapping126 

Antisocial Applications of Mind Mapping126 

Traumatic Mind Mapping129 

Traumatic Mind Mapping Impairs Your Response to Stress132 

The closer the relationship, the bigger the impact 139 

Traumatic Mind Mapping in Troubled Homes139 

Sexual abuse most often occurs through traumatic mind mapping142 

PTSD From Traumatic Mind Mapping144 

Mind mapping distortions from traumatic mind mapping146 

Examples of holes in mind mapping radar149 

Anticipatory Traumatic Mind Mapping150 

Chapter 9: Antisocial Empathy152 

Wrong Notions About Empathy153 

What is Antisocial Empathy?155 

Schadenfreude: Harm-joy157 

Examples of antisocial empathy158 

Mirror neurons and embodied knowledge161 

How You Can Tell Someone Has Antisocial Empathy163 

Studying Who Fails In Therapy166 

Disgusting Parenting170 

Therapists, teachers and doctors overlook disgusting parenting173 

Chapter 10: Impacts of Traumatic Mind Mapping176 

Short-Term Impacts of Traumatic Mind Mapping176 

Cognitive impairments177 

Mind mapping shuts down178 

Repeatedly triggered primary emotions180 

Impaired emotional functioning181 

Mind mapping fails to collapse183 

Long-Term Impacts of Repeated Traumatic Mind Mapping184 

Steady state regressions186 

Impaired disgust reaction187 

Cruel mental “voice”191 

Hard-wired thought patterns193 

Holes in your mind mapping radar194 

Autobiographical memory gaps and distortions196 

Antisocial empathy199 

Being taken hostage200 

The Benefits of Seeing Dark Things202 

Recovering From “Trump Trauma”203 

Diagnosing the country205 

Recovering from the presidential election206 

Crucible Neurobiological Therapy207 

Part Three: Mind Mapping Solutions209 

Chapter 11: Detecting Mind Mapping In Others210 

Identify Other People’s Mind-Mapping Abilities210 

Detecting Mind-Masking Ability214 

Discovering deception and lying217 

Improving deception detection220 

Spotting Someone Playing Three Moves Ahead221 

Rule out mind blindness223 

Hearing is a large part of mind mapping225 

Mind Mapping Isn’t Perfect226 

When mind-mapping ability is revealed229 

Chapter 12: Reversing Traumatic Mind Mapping232 

Visualization and Targeted Mind Mapping235 

See the setting237 

Watch the movie unfold238 

Use a first-person view243 

Eye contact isn’t always necessary245 

Solutions for Resistant Problems248 

Shift to a third-person view249 

Envision your child in your position252 

Bang Your Head Against the Wall Until the Wall Moves252 

Use Your Left Brain to Corner Your Right Brain254 

Chapter 13: Repairing Your Autobiographical Memory260 

Keep a Person’s Mind-Mapping Abilities in Mind261 

Autobiographical memory gaps make this difficult262 

Detecting Holes in Your Mind Mapping Radar266 

Repair Autobiographical Gaps Through Revisualization268 

Mealtime memories are rich resources272 

Cross-Reference Memories of Traumatic Events275 

Analyze correspondence277 

Analyze audio and video recordings281 

Have Mental Dialogs With Your Antagonist283 

Chapter 14: Dealing with Destructive People289 

Dealing With People Who Do Disgusting Things289 


Parents messing with couple’s decision to have a child291 

Disclosure of dead brother292 

The wedding293 

The bachelor party294 



Situationally-Accessible Memory (SAM)299 

Handling People Who Make Moves on You300 

Written mental dialogues301 

Decipher your antagonists’ moves302 

Concrete steps for dealing with your antagonists304 

Show your antagonists you can see them306 

Hold On To Yourself (Differentiation)309 

Mental dialogue with father310 

Make “Gold Standard” Responses312 

Don’t let your antagonist get around you313 

Another comment brings things to a head317 

Email Interactions320 

Face-to-Face Meetings324 

Keep up with your antagonist in real time325 

Look for “news of a difference”328 

Did Mother and Father know what they were doing?329 

Impacts Ripple Through Dysfunctional Families330 

“False memories”331 

Post-traumatic Growth332 

The moral of the story334 

Chapter 15: Create Positive Moments of Meeting335 

Positive Moments In Love Relationships336 

Give “the gift of mind” to those you love337 

Stop masking your mind338 

Resolving extramarital affairs338 

Deeper intimacy in and out of bed340 

Hugging ‘till Relaxed340 

Heads on Pillows342 

Eyes Open Sex and Orgasms343 

Positive Moments With Your Children343 

Give your children permission to see you344 

Freedom to unmask their minds345 

Enter young children’s mental worlds345 

Brain-oriented sex education347 

Three step repair strategy348 

Positive Moments With Friends352 

Creating a Healthier Workplace353 

Reconnecting With Siblings321 

Cherishing Aging Parents357 

Let’s Do This!360 

« Brain Talk – Overview Brain Talk – Appendices »

David Schnarch
Brain Talk is written by award-winning clinical psychologist, and world-renowned relationship expert, Dr. David Schnarch. He has a proven track record for creating innovative therapies and making complex brain science understandable and useful to the general public. His ground-breaking professional contributions have received awards from the American Psychological Association, the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy, and the American Association for Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists. He is Board Certified in Couple and Family Psychology (ABPP), and his textbook Constructing the Sexual Crucible is used in therapist training programs internationally. His prior books Passionate Marriage and Intimacy & Desire are in constant demand and have been translated in languages around the globe.
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