Longing for love?
Hug the monkey.
To simplify a complex process spanning 600 million years, your brain developed in ways that are loosely related to three major stages of vertebrate evolution:
- Reptile – Brainstem, focused on avoiding harms
- Mammal – Subcortex, focused on approaching rewards
- Primate/human – Neocortex, focused on attaching to “us”
Since the brain is integrated, avoiding, approaching, and attaching are accomplished by its parts working together. Nonetheless, each of these functions is particularly served and shaped by the region of the brain that first evolved to handle it.