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brain science


Congratulations on taking the quiz and unlocking the C.O.D.E. to your unique brain type. You’ve taken the first step towards understanding how to leverage your strengths and develop strategies to overcome your biggest challenges. As a Wise Owl, you have incredible strengths you can use to overcome any challenge in your learning and life.

If you haven’t taken the test yet, be sure to visit mybrainanimal.com to find out which brain animal represents you.

The Wise Owl

The Wise Owl represents the logical thinker. You have strong analytical skills and a finite attention to detail, allowing you to assess data with clarity and precision. And you have yet to meet a puzzle you weren’t excited to solve. There’s nothing you love more than unraveling complex concepts and breaking problems down into manageable parts. Your curiosity is insatiable, driving you to ask questions and explore new topics. When it comes to making decisions, you need time to take a deep dive into the problem, consider multiple outcomes, weigh the pros and cons, and think several steps out before reaching any conclusions. Whether it’s taking everyone’s interests into account when planning a family vacation, or providing a comprehensive report on your company’s productivity, you handle intricate details with ease. But creating quality analysis takes time, and that means you’re not comfortable making snap decisions under pressure.

Utilize Your Owl Strengths

You excel at breaking down complex tasks into manageable steps. Use this ability to create a clear plan for whatever project you set out to accomplish. Make sure you set appropriate milestones and prioritize tasks to increase productivity. Your ability to analyze information will help this process happen in an efficient and organized manner. And it ensures that you stay on track no matter what obstacles pop up along the way.

A structured routine is part of this process, and if you don’t have one, establishing a daily routine will help you focus. Make sure this includes finding the right resources and tools to help with this routine. A calendar, journal, and a system of reminders will ease your cognitive load so you can create an environment conducive to logical thinking. You want to be sure to include specific times for work, breaks, and don’t forget the importance of scheduling personal time.

Logic puzzles and brain teasers are fantastic tools to enhance your natural logical thinking skills. You learn best through activities that engage your curiosity and deductive reasoning. Lessons that allow you to ask why and dig deep into the data are going to enrich your learning experience and help cement new skills into your long-term memory. And activities like Sudoku, crosswords, word games, riddles, and other problem-solving puzzles are likely to keep your brain activate and engaged.

You’ll want to sharpen your communication skills by actively listening to others. Since you are well versed in research, it might feel like you can find the information you need on your own. But to avoid the tendency to create natural bias, asking for feedback and opinions on a regular basis can help keep you on track. This can also help you avoid missteps and miscalculations, as the extra input gives you another data point you wouldn’t have gotten on your own.

Owls Working with Others

Every animal type has their own strengths to contribute when working with others. The goal of a successful team is to use your strengths to complement others and contribute to a more effective and balanced group dynamic. Here are some specific strategies you can employ when working with other animal brain types.

Cheetahs execute tasks quickly. They are action-oriented and ready to pivot at a moment’s notice. You can work with Cheetahs by offering coherent plans and strategies to help launch their actions in a pointed direction. While their tendency to make rapid decisions and embrace new situations can be intimidating, even stressful, your preference to do a deep dive on every detail can be time-consuming, cumbersome, and sometimes, unnecessary. Your organizational skills and ability to solve complex problems and their adaptability means you can execute projects with precision.

The creative Dolphin might feel like they’re the exact opposite of your structured approach, but there is a lot you can learn from each other. You can help bring organization and order to their creative ideas. A Dolphin thrives in finding new approaches to problems which pairs well with your desire to solve complex puzzles. Their out-of-the-box thinking might be overwhelming, but together, you can create innovative new solutions that fit within a well-designed framework.

When it comes to teams, the Elephant can be an Owls best friend. You tend to stick to yourself, quietly and efficiently working through your tasks. This can sometimes lead to feeling alienated, and others on your team may not understand the value you bring. Because an Elephant seeks to collaborate with others and ensure that all voices are heard, they can help you learn how to speak up for yourself and ask for help. Their gentle guidance can connect you with teammates who will not only work with you, but optimize your performance.

Improve Your Owl Weaknesses

Every animal type has challenges you can work on to improve your performance. By focusing on personal growth, you can become self-aware enough to overcome these obstacles and become your best self.

As someone who values logic and order, your emotional intelligence can be something you neglect. After all, emotions don’t always make sense, and you embody rational thinking. Learning how to recognize and manage your own emotions can help you learn to empathize with others. Logic isn’t always the ideal way to approach decision-making and problem-solving. Often, there is a very human element involved, and taking that into consideration will make you more well-rounded in all areas of your work and life.

On that same note, this extends to communication. You might not want to reach out to others for feedback or to come up with new ideas. Especially because both can seem very illogical initially. There is very little you can’t research, but sometimes the solution is in a place you might never think to look. Innovation is often unexpected, and you can’t rely on what you know to find it. Even if you do come up with a fantastic idea, launching new products or procedures requires buy-in and collaboration. Learning how to communicate regularly with your teams, classmates, family, and friends can ensure you get the support and help you need, no matter what task you’re facing.

As much as you might prefer that life fell into manageable pieces, the truth is, it’s often unpredictable. When you work on becoming more flexible and adaptable in the face of change, you save yourself time and stress when unavoidable changes happen. Your strength is in planning, and you can prepare for a quite a lot. But you can’t plan for every contingency. Use your insights from research to practice responding to unexpected situations. In the end, your preparation can help you respond more efficiently when you’re hit with the unforeseen.

By focusing on these areas of improvement, you’ll learn how to communicate and prepare for any situation. This will give you a more balanced and effective approach to work, learning, and personal growth.

Better Owl Problem-solving and Decision-making

Each animal brain type has unique cognitive preferences that you can use to improve your problem-solving and decision-making abilities.

As an Owl, you want to embrace your analytical skills. Break problems down into smaller components, identifying the root causes and underlying principles of each step. This systematic approach will help you better understand the problem and identify potential solutions.

You can use these analytical skills to carefully weigh the pros and cons of each solution. This means you can not only come up with multiple answers, but can evaluate each alternative until you find the best one. You’re able to make informed decisions based on objective criteria to arrive at the best approach to move forward.

After making a decision, be sure to review the outcomes and reflect on how specific elements in your decision-making process so you can learn from your experience. Your goal should be improving your process so that future problems and goals become more refined and streamlined.


As an Owl, you have incredible strengths and cognitive gifts. You can leverage these abilities to overcome challenges, improve your performance, and unlock your inner genius. Learn to utilize your analytical and logical abilities, practice asking for help, and turn the world into a puzzle only you can solve.

Remember, these brain types are not strict categories, but a framework to help you explore and embrace your unique qualities. You may even find multiple brain types resonate with you. Everyone is a one-of-a-kind combination of traits and abilities. That’s why your brain type isn’t a limitation, but a foundation from which you can build and expand.

This information can help you tailor your learning approach, seek environments that complement your strengths, and surround yourself with individuals who can support and challenge you. When you embrace your strengths, cultivate your weaknesses, and embark on a journey of self-discovery and personal growth, you can unleash your truly limitless potential.

Take the quiz

So, are you ready to uncover your brain type? Find out if you embody the agility of the Cheetah, the wisdom of the Owl, the creativity of the Dolphin, and the empathy of the Elephant. Take the quiz at mybrainanimal.com and unlock the power of your remarkable mind.


The human brain has long been a mystery. It’s one of the most powerful organs, capable of creating thought, memory, and learning. But scientists have struggled with unlocking exactly how it does these incredible feats. The good news is that every year, more studies and more studies are done. And scientists are discovering more about the brain than ever before. Every month, researchers release dozens of new findings, each one helping to unlock the mysteries that have long eluded science before. We went through the latest neuroscience journals and found five of the best brain discoveries of 2023.

Breathing Network Unlocked

Neuroscientists are one step closer to understanding how breathing affect neural networks in the brain.

Breathing is a fundamental physiological process. The brain controls breathing in the same way it controls all other automatic functions. And scientists know a decent amount about how breathing affects the brain. They know the brain stem controls how you breathe. And that breathing modulates neural activity in various regions in the brain. But the exact extent of that neural control was largely unknown.

Scientists relied on fMRI scans to trace respiration and neural function. But the scans had a difficult time discerning if neural activity was because of breathing or normal C02 fluctuations and body movement.

A new study by Nanyin Zhang, the Lloyd & Dorothy Foehr Huck Chair in Brain Imaging and director of the Center for Neurotechnology in Mental Health Research at Penn State discovered a respiratory network in the brain. For the first time, they were able to map neural responses throughout the brain that were modulated by respiration. Essentially, they’re able to determine exactly how breathing patterns can impact neural activity directly.

While scientists have known that breathing can change your emotional state, and vice versa, the exact mechanisms taking place in the brain were still vague. By pairing fMRI technology with electrophysiology, they hope to further study how breathing can modulate neural activity in practices like deep breathing, meditation, and more.

Read more, here.

Zipping Up Tasks

The human brain ‘zips and unzips’ information to perform skilled tasks

A new study discovered the underlying mechanism of ‘muscle memory’. Rather than remembering an activity as a whole, the brain actually ‘unzips’ each individual movement before ‘zipping’ them back together in the right order of operations to complete the task. Before this discovery, neurologists believed the brain stored activities and tasks as one cohesive behavior.

They also discovered that the brain stores specific components of these actions in different motor areas of the brain. The brain further separates the tasks into order sequence and timing, and then combines them when it’s time to perform the task.

Researchers believe that storing these elements individually and reviewing them before executing the movements allows for greater flexibility and resilience. Participants had an easier time learning new sequences when the timing of the activity, in this case finger presses, was the same. But learning a known activity with a new timing was more difficult. They hope this discovery will help design new therapies for stroke patients and other brain injuries.

Read more, here.

Alzheimer’s Immune Cell Discovery

A new study indicates that T cells play a key role in tau-related neurodegeneration, a finding that suggests new treatment strategies for Alzheimer’s and related diseases.

Several clinical trials are underway examining the role immune cells play in Alzheimer’s and other neural degenerative disease. Many studies focus on the microglia for treatment, as they are the brain’s immune cells. If activated at the wrong time or in the wrong way, rather than protecting the brain, they can actually damage neural cells. Researchers out of the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis found that neurodegeneration happens when microglia partner with T-cells. T-cells are powerful immune cells designed to attack and kill foreign particles.

Patients with Alzheimer’s disease have large numbers of T-cells in their brain. But scientists didn’t understand why or that this increased number was contributing to neurodegeneration. A new study focused on tau-related neurodegeneration in mice found that when the brain blocks T-cells from entering, those individuals could avoid neurodegeneration.

Tau is a protein that helps stabilize nerve cells in the brain. However, too much of the protein activates the microglia, which then attracts T cells into the brain to fight the buildup. At a certain point, this buildup also begins collecting tau, and that’s when the disease begins to noticeably progress.

Xiaoying Chen, PhD, an instructor in neurology and first author of the study, looked at four study groups of mice. The first two had amyloid beta buildup, the third had tau buildup, and the fourth was a healthy brain group. The third group had the most neurodegeneration and also had the highest level of T cells in the brain. Further, the concentration of T cells was the highest where neurodegeneration occurred. The study found that when they prevented T cells from entering the brain, they prevented most of the neurodegeneration. Researchers are excited to continue studying how this might help prevent tau-related disease from damaging the brain.

Read more, here.

Lab Grown Neurons

Researchers out of Northwestern University have successfully created mature neurons from human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs). This is the first time they’ve been able to create these highly mature neurons. Previously, they could create neurons from stem cells, but they were immature and difficult to use in many therapeutic interventions.

The research team took the iPSCs and used a breakthrough technique discovered last year by Northwestern professor Samuel I. Stupp known as ‘dancing molecules’. They then coated them with synthetic nanofibers. This process created a mature neuron that didn’t clump together the way immature neurons using stem cells previously did. Even more exciting, these new neurons weren’t simply more mature, they also displayed better signaling and branching capabilities. That makes them more likely to integrate in the brain and create more synaptic connections.

Researchers are testing new ways to apply their findings. One area of focus will use patient skin cells, converting them into iPSCs, and using them to treat spinal cord injuries and neurodegenerative disorders. In addition to researching new therapeutic protocols, researchers can also use these mature cells to simulate degenerative diseases in order to study how they can be prevented in the future.

Read more, here.

Tune Brainwaves for Learning

Tuning into brainwave rhythms speeds up learning in adults, study finds

Research out of the University of Cambridge shows that not only does every brain have a unique rhythm pattern, but tuning into those wavelengths dramatically improves learning. This is the first time a study has synchronized learning to specific and individualized brain wave patterns.

The study used electroencephalography, or an EEG machine, to tune into the natural brainwave patterns of the participants and find their exact peak alpha wave performance. Alpha waves are the frequency your brain is in when you’re awake and relaxed. Studies show that this is where you feel calm and creative.

Before being presented with new learning material, they showed participants a 1.5-second pulse pattern to tune their brain to various brainwave patterns. This process is called “entrainment”. They gave some peak performance frequencies, other’s low performance, and other’s random patterns. Participants then had to complete over 800 cognitive tasks. Individuals attuned to peak performance brainwaves performed three times faster than all other groups.

Researchers believe that these new findings can help maintain neuroplasticity as people age and encourage lifelong learning. While this study focused on visual perception, researchers believe this approach can enhance motor skills and even auditory learning. Even more exciting, less invasive devices such as headbands can create similar results outside of clinical settings.

Read more, here.

If you want to learn more about how devices like Muse can help enhance your learning, watch this video: