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Switch On Your Brain: The Key to Peak Happiness, Thinking, and Health

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  4,483 ratings  ·  516 reviews
"If you need a change in your thought life or overall attitude, Switch On Your Brain will convince you that your brain can be renewed by the power of God's Spirit and biblical truth."--James Robison, president of LIFE Outreach International; cohost of LIFE Today

"The following pages are not information, they are revelation. Caroline's revelation will change the way you thin
Kindle Edition, 241 pages
Published September 1st 2013 by Baker Books (first published 2007)
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Average rating 3.93  · 
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Neil R. Coulter
Aug 06, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I found Switch on Your Brain to be a frustrating (but mercifully quick) read. Caroline Leaf's main point is that we can alter our lives for the better by changing our habitual thought patterns. According to Leaf, we can change not only our thought life, but even our DNA by the conscious redirection of negative thinking into positive thinking. Leaf repeatedly claims to be a scientist (which, ironically, always makes me wonder how true it is) and loads the chapters with a lot of surface-skimming o ...more
Jan 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I love neuroscience. I also love the Holy Scriptures. So what a surprise when Dr. Caroline Leaf, a communication pathologist in the field of cognitive neuroscience, summarizes in this book a large part of her research in recent years to link scientific principles to Scripture. Oh my word, I LOVED this book! It blends two of my favorite subjects.

I always trusted and believed God’s Word to contain wisdom and accurate statements about human behaviour and psychology. Finally, a scientist who recogn
BuenoBomb aka Andre Bueno
Dec 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I read this book twice. Wasn't a fan the first time (given the heavy biblical references) though besides those items the second time made a ton of sense. Would recommend reading.

-- NOTES --

Neurogenesis is how the brain regenerates itself

- The mind controls the body
- We can control our reactions and choices
- Our DNA can change shapes bases on our thoughts

- Pay attention to your thoughts
- You have the power to change
- Epigenetics: your choices affect your life situation
- Whatever you t
- ̗̀  jess  ̖́-
Feb 17, 2016 rated it did not like it
My mom made me read this. Bullshit pseudoscience. I have no time for this nonsense I have actual books to read.
Karyn Collie
Aug 17, 2019 rated it did not like it
I apologize for the lengthy review, but I have never read a book that made me so angry!

This book was recommended to me by someone who thought I would love it because it combines science with Scripture and addresses mental health, all of which are very important to me. The problem is that it is terrible science combined with terrible theology combined with terrible mental health advice, all wrapped up in terrible writing.

If you have a friend who struggles with mental illness, PLEASE DO NOT recomm
Stephen Johnson
Feb 28, 2016 rated it it was ok
I was recommended to read Switch on Your Brain by a trusted, Jesus following colleague. As an emergency services chaplain, I work in some of the most emotionally draining environments. As a result of that work and the ongoing challenges of daily living, I found myself in need of a brain "detox." It was then my colleague advised me to read this text. I appreciate her love for me and her care for my thought life, even if I did not appreciate this book as much as she thought I'd might.

I feel a need
Christopher Pitt
Aug 16, 2014 rated it did not like it
Ever tried to put on your old jeans and realised just how much your body has changed since the last time you put them on? Sure, if you tried hard enough, you could get them on, but they would be tight, restrictive and just plain uncomfortable. In this book, Dr Leaf has taken a whole body of new scientific information on thoughts and stress, and tried to writhe and wriggle them into her old theories that she's hung onto from several decades ago.

Dr Leaf presents a number of theories of hers about
Feb 12, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dev
That is a pice of rare delirium.
I assume that most of those who scored this book 5 star are religious people.
For anybody else - this book will be boring, badly written and extreamly annoying with religious citations and God mentioning on every page.
When i open the book and sow 70% reviews from some church people i was surprised.
When i read this lady , so called doctor and scientists believes in God so hard and backs up all the findings and conclusion with bible - the book lost all of its illusi
Emma Nutt
Aug 23, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Reading this book brought me much anguish and self doubt. It was recommended to me by a christian friend who I believe had best interests at heart, however this book is so out of touch with people living through serious day to day mental suffering.
As a person who has suffered with OCD since I was 15 (in the form of unwanted and anxiety riddled sexual thoughts and doubt), this book only attempts to put me back as the person who is responsible for these thoughts. I spent 3 years in secrecy with my
Oct 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was impressed with this book. She has done a great job of correlation recent brain science with biblical commands, such as renewing your mind. The understanding now that the brain can be changed - neuropasticity - means that renewing the mind is a scientific reality. It takes about 21 days to create integrated long term memory, hence the 21 day plan. Since so many issues people have today are caused by wrong thinking, this is a valuable book. See my full review at ...more
Lisa Shultz
Jul 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: self-help
I generally like topics such as this book, but I didn't like the presentation of the material. First, the preamble was excessive. I wanted her to get to the point much sooner. Second, the techno-speak was annoying. I am an intelligent person but I don't want to have to figure out scientific words and then translate into words I can relate to. I was turned off when "satin's lies" were interjected in the middle, which seemed out of context and inappropriate. Overall, not a book I will recommend to ...more
Sep 20, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I think I'm too dumb to get this book. Well, at least I tried to engage my Basal Ganglia and Cerebellum but I think I need more myelin sheath. ...more
April Ashton
Jun 02, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I was really excited to get this book. But I quickly had red flags appear when Chapter 1 was basically the same as the Introduction. Some of it word for word. I persevered however, but it did not get any better. So much repetition and meaningless gobbledygook. I kept going thinking I will get to the "how to do this" eventually. Which in the end could be summed up in two pages. And even then the two pages of instructions involved having to go back to previous chapters. It was a waste of time for ...more
Dawnita Fogleman
Jul 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: must-read
This book and the help of the woman who suggested it has been a life changer for me. The past few years struggle with CPTSD has been very real and hard for me. God has brought me a long way. For the first time in my life, I truly understand I am brilliant and beautiful. I can't be anything else. I'm created in HIS image and I'm walking HIS path, following HIM and HIS word. This is awesome! I have begun rewiring my brain through the 21 Day Brain Detox and will continue until either HE calls me ho ...more
Jul 23, 2016 rated it really liked it
The author provides interesting strategies for dealing with stress and living a more mindful, stable life.

Examples include resting your mind, the ability for our minds to choose a positive/negative outlook, how to deal with toxic thoughts etc.

I was surprised by the parallels between religion and science. Even more surprising was how I could relate more towards the religious message. The science was a little above my head :)
Aug 27, 2014 rated it it was ok
My takeaway: the brain is amazing, we can control a lot of what goes on. The Scripture-Science links are amazing. But what a lot of verbiage I waded through. Phew - I made it to the DIY section; but Oh No! More amagdyla and hippocampus speak. Drowning in neuroscience I made it to the final page with absolutely no desire to brain detox for 21 bloomin' days. My frontal lobes will have to wither. ...more
Kevin Cullis
Jan 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
AMAZING!! GET THIS BOOK!! While I have been on a similar path as this book outlines, it encouraged and accelerated where I was headed. Before I got it, a friend said that he has gone through the 21 day thought detox three times!! Each time he's gotten better at his thinking.

LeAnn Stanhope
Sep 10, 2017 rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 18, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
An illuminating read. I firmly believe in the truths Leaf relates here. My main issue with her 21 day detox regime, though, is how obscure it felt. I feel like instruction on actually carrying the process out was lacking, and I'm still not entirely sure how to do it, despite her outlining of the steps. I think I need clearer examples of such a regime, because the mind is an obscure black hole of a thing. I love the science of psychology too, but I feel like in this book she was too wrapped up in ...more
Rachel A.  Dawson
I have a lot of mixed feelings about this one. My counselor recommended that I read it, and i had never heard of it or the author before. At first, it felt too woo-woo for me, but I came to appreciate the blending of Scripture and science more as I kept reading. Parts of this one felt dismissive and cliche to me, but other parts got under my skin and made me really think deeply about how my brain works and how the Lord can renew and transform our minds. I found it interesting but I read it skept ...more
K Rae
I absolutely loved this book! Neuroscience and Scripture combined to show us how we can renew our minds and become who God created us to be. She made the science easy to understand, and shows how scientific concepts are linked to Scriptures. We have the power to physically change our brains (through our thinking) and to align our lives with God's Truth (His Word) because that is how He created us - in His image. Driven by us, but led by the Holy Spirit, we can tap into our lost potential and liv ...more
Darius Murretti
Jan 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Finished !

I really enjoyed Bruce Lipton's books and have just bought this one by Carol Leaf .

Our cells HAVE BEEN SHOWN in peer reviewed experiments to alter the way they reproduce according the extra cellular environment (chemical/hormonal ). These scientific observations shows that is NOT the genes we are born with as much as the hormonal environment we immerse them in that determines the characteristics (healthy of unhealthy) subsequent generations of cells in our bodies .
"The Plastic Brain -
May 05, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think that the basic premise of this book is noteworthy and worthy of further exploration. That begin said, as someone with both a science and ministry background, I felt that four aspects of Dr. Leaf's efforts fell significantly short.

First, parts of the book were overly technical for the targeted audience. Second, I'm not a neuroscientist, but I suspect that at least some of the science was more theory than proven fact. Third, I felt that many of the Scriptural references were taken out of
Feb 24, 2018 added it
Shelves: health
Admittedly, this book is above my head; however, I was determined to read this book because I am a fan of Dr. Leaf’s ministry. I enjoyed her Eat Yourself Smart book and this book had a lot of repeat information. The inclusion of scripture is great to see in a book about neuroplasticity. God is the designer of our brain, so who better to seek in renewing it?! I have heard of her brain detox before and was excited to see that journaling was a key part of it. I can testify to the healing of writing ...more
Aug 25, 2014 rated it it was ok
This book is interesting and intriguing, entertaining in it's high information load. The theory did spill over into the practical...
I was not inspired to do the practical and I did not finish the book.
I think her method could usefully inform a prayerful worshipful engagement with God about your thought life. But the emphasis would be on God not the book's methods.
Maureen Russell
May 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Wow. Revelational. In-depth science plus Scripture equals amazing new information about how we think and how we can change the way we think. And what impact that will have on our lives. Starting my 21 Day Brain Detox (yesterday) and preparing to teach this information to my Mom’s Group. Highly recommend to all believers.
P.A. Baines
Mar 16, 2015 rated it liked it
Having just finished the book without actually trying the 21-day plan, I'll focus this review on the book itself and how it is presented. Later, I will review the plan itself and relate any successes I have.

Firstly, it is written from a Christian perspective so is very heavily tied in with the Bible. For me, this is not a problem but I can imagine it would some people off. To me, the Bible holds many truths that, if applied, can help people achieve mental health. Dr. Leaf points out that science
Dianna Douglass
Jan 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
I walked away with some new truths for my life, but I did feel like I had to wade through much repetition, vague generalizations and irrelevant diagrams. The concept regarding quantum physics and biblical backing is of interest to me, and that is why I gave it a higher rating.

Although I have spent the past couple of years learning and relearning about the systems of the human body, I found myself spending more time digging deeper into anatomy/biology/physics (which was a good thing for me) than
Steen Jones
Mar 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
So much great information and application! I can't wait to get started on the program tomorrow to take care of some toxic lies I've allowed to take root in my mind.

While this book is written by a christian and has a ton of scripture in it, it is FULL of scientific studies, proven theories regarding brain function, quantum mechanics, Epigenetics, & neuroplasticity.

My favorite line in the book is "when faced with a thousand negative probabilities, you always need to remember that probability has
Jun 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is fascinating. The information in it is eye-opening. I learned a lot. It's written in a way that I found easy to understand.

The reason I didn't give it five stars is I felt the part about the 21-Day Brain Detox plan wasn't as easy to follow. I found I didn't fully grasp how to do each of the steps. Each step is thoroughly explained, but I found the practical application not so intuitive. I'm hoping that with a reread it'll become clearer.

I highly recommend this book for anyone wanti
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Dr. Caroline Leaf is a cognitive neuroscientist with a PhD in Communication Pathology specializing in Neuropsychology. Since the early 1980‘s she has studied and researched the Mind-Brain connection. During her years in clinical practice as a Communication Pathologist she developed tools and processes that help people develop and change their thinking and subsequent behavior. Her scientific Scienc ...more

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“You cannot sit back and wait to be happy and healthy and have a great thought life; you have to make the choice to make this happen. You have to choose to get rid of the toxic and get back in alignment with God. You can be overwhelmed by every small setback in life, or you can be energized by the possibilities they bring.” 28 likes
“If you realized how powerful your thoughts are, you would never think a negative thought. Peace Pilgrim” 16 likes
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