Neurobiologist Doug Fields is a typically easy-going guy. He isn’t the type of dude who would, say, lash out at another driver for cutting him off in traffic. But when he was robbed while vacationing in Spain, he completely flipped out and got in a violent fight.
We see this sort of snap in big ways and small ways every day. It dominates headlines when someone starts shooting at a public place. And we see it in smaller ways on our morning commutes. What exactly happens in the brain that causes someone to freak out? Doug Fields obsessively researched why and published his findings in “Why We Snap."
It can happen to you
“Anyone can snap given the right provocation,” Fields tells us. “We will all react aggressively and violently in certain situations.” Fields studied the neuro circuits in the brain and found rage triggers everyone has. “Why We Snap” outlines nine, but some of the most common ones are a life or death threat, threat to a loved one, threat to your home, or threat to your tribe.
“Our brain is wired to constantly be on the lookout for threats,” Fields says. “In response to sudden danger, we react automatically; you can’t think about it.”