Did you know the brain has a “delete button”? There is an old saying in neuroscience: neurons that fire together wire together. This means the more you run a neuro-circuit in your brain, the stronger that circuit becomes.

According to an article by Judah Pollack and Olivia Fox Cabana, the ability to learn is about more than building and strengthening neural connections. Even more important is our ability to break down old ones through synaptic pruning. Synaptic pruning allows your brain the ability to create physical space to build new and stronger connections so you can retain more information.

Here are two things you should know about synaptic pruning:

1. Sleep is important! Synaptic pruning primarily happens when you are asleep. The pruning that takes place while you are sleeping creates space in your brain to store new
information.

2. Mindfulness is key. “It’s the synaptic connections you don’t use that get marked for recycling,” Pollack wrote. “The ones you do use are the ones that get watered and oxygenated.”

When we look at how pornography effects the brain, we know that connections are formed when viewing sexually explicit images. These connections are associated with pleasure. The more time spent viewing pornography, the stronger the connections become.

However, old connections and pathways in the brain can be pruned away to create room for new, stronger connections. Just like viewing pornography creates connections in our brain, staying away from it will weaken them until they fade away. A pornography addiction can be difficult to overcome, but time can allow you to regain control. Remember, your brain is customizable: you decide how it changes by focusing on what you put in it.