Are Scheming Dragons Stealing Your Mind?


By Daniel G. Amen, MD

Your brain is always listening to Scheming Dragons—advertisers, news feeds, social media sites, and the gadgets in your pockets—that steal your mind and money. We live in a time when Scheming Dragons are on the loose. They are everywhere, deviously sending you messages that feed your inner dragons (the dragons that breathe fire on your emotional brain) and make you fat, depressed, and feebleminded. There are the foot-long hot dogs at the ballpark, the huge meal portions at restaurants, the food pushers who ask us to supersize everything for less money, and the billboards hyping monster foods that will kill you early.

In our society, you’re faced every day with Scheming Dragons—advertisers, news feeds, social media sites, and the gadgets in your pockets—that steal your mind and money. Click To Tweet

Scheming Dragons are everywhere, trying to make money off your impulses, even if in the near future, it fuels your inner dragons—such as the Anxious Dragons, Angry Dragons, Hopeless Dragons, Inferior Dragons, Flawed Dragons—or the Bad Habit Dragons.

The Scheming Dragons use sophisticated neuroscience to get you hooked on whatever they’re selling. They capitalize on the latest research on habits and addiction to make your brain crave their products and services and to automate their use, so you don’t even think about what you’re doing.

In my new book, Your Brain Is Always Listening, I introduce you to 5 of the worst Scheming Dragons.

5 Scheming Dragons That Steal Your Mind

1. Food Pusher Dragons

It’s nearly impossible to avoid Food Pusher Dragons. They are everywhere trying to entice you to eat food that will steal your focus, make you feel sluggish, put you on a mood roller coaster, and trigger your Bad Habit Dragons. Even during the pandemic, when many places were off-limits, the Food Pusher Dragons found new ways to hook you as grocery stores, restaurants, and bakeries promised to deliver the addictive fare you crave.

When your brain gives in to the Food Pusher Dragons, it means you’re fueling your brain and body with the ingredients that lead to obesity/diabesity and that feed your inner dragons.

2. Substance and Toxin Pusher Dragons

When you think of drug pushers, you probably think of back-alley dope dealers. But there are many kinds of Substance Pusher Dragons who are selling drugs that can have negative consequences on brain health. For example, physicians are now prescribing legalized marijuana and CBD (cannabidiol, one of the ingredients of the marijuana and hemp plants) oil to treat symptoms of anxiety, depression, irritability, and aggression even though there’s a scarcity of scientific research on it. Toxin Pusher Dragons are also in your local grocery store and they sell skincare and cosmetics that promise to make you look more attractive and more youthful.

When your brain is always listening to the Substance and Toxin Pusher Dragons, it can lead to the misguided belief that a substance or pill alone can solve your health issues, clean your house, or make you look and feel better. These substances and products, whether directly damaging or secretly damaging, can give you brain fog, anxiety, depression, and memory loss, and set you up for addiction.

3. Digital Dragons

Technology companies, video-game developers, app creators, news companies, social networks, entertainment providers, and porn sites—have hijacked our brains, stolen our attention, and hooked us on their gadgets, games, and streaming services. These Digital Dragons are winning the war for your attention by using a laundry list of proven marketing strategies.

When your brain is always listening to the distressing News Monger Dragons, for example, it increases anxiety, depression, and stress. In a survey from the American Psychological Association, 56% percent of people said that regularly following the news causes stress. Over time, elevated stress hormones shrink the major memory centers in your brain, increase inflammation, and put excessive fat around your waist.

4. Contact Sports Dragons

Your brain is soft and your skull is hard. Head injuries, even mild ones that occurred decades earlier, are a major cause of depression, addictions, and memory problems. A study from the Mayo Clinic found that one-third of people who played football at any level had lasting brain damage.

When your brain is always listening to the Contact Sports Dragons, you believe that playing football and other sports is “not that bad” and that head injuries won’t cause lasting problems. This is a lie. Concussions, even ones that don’t cause you to blackout, can cause depression, anger, anxiety, memory loss, confusion, and more.

5. Holiday Dragons

What could seem more festive and friendly than Holiday Dragons? These beasts promote holiday cheer and family togetherness, but they often end up causing stress, overspending, bad health, excessive drinking, and suicidal thoughts.

When your brain is always listening to the Holiday Dragons, you feel pressure to overeat, overspend, and overextend yourself. It can all lead to stress, loneliness, depression, anxiety, weight gain, and trouble in your relationships.

In my new book, Your Brain Is Always Listening, I show you how to outfox all of these Scheming Dragons with 5 simple steps.

Your Brain Is Always Listening is written by psychiatrist, neuroscientist, and New York Times bestselling author Daniel G. Amen, MD. In this book, Dr. Amen equips you with powerful weapons to battle the inner dragons that are breathing fire on your brain, driving unhealthy behaviors, and robbing you of your joy and contentment. Order your copy here.

If you want to join the tens of thousands of Amen Clinics patients who have already tamed their dragons and overcome their symptoms of anxiety, depression, trauma, and more, speak to a specialist today at 888-288-9834 or visit our contact page here.


  1. There is a spirit that keeps the dragons at bay. The Spirit of God My trust and guidance come from Him, He led me to you on my journey through this life. I trust in Him

    Comment by Shand Wentworth — February 10, 2021 @ 3:28 AM

  2. I listening to you last night talk about your new book and ordered 3 copies. Learning and following your advice on ANTs has helped me tremendously. I can’t wait to read your new book and share it with family members to help us with those ancestor dragons.

    Comment by Debbie — February 10, 2021 @ 5:01 AM

  3. Please pray for addicts who cause the spread of std. Which cancers can be caused by herpes ? Cervical, leukemia?

    Comment by Patricia L.Smith — February 10, 2021 @ 5:31 AM

  4. Great article and thanks for sharing.

    Comment by Timothy Lee — February 10, 2021 @ 6:08 AM

  5. I love all your messages. Before I had to catch Dr Amen’s programs on our Utah Promos for chanel ,7 …to raise money.
    …… It is always good to get outside info, especially when & with dealing with Covid.
    And , all of ,2020 surprises. Thanks for offering insites to different issues.
    It makes no difference how well adjusted one is ,. You can always use different perspectives.

    Comment by Dee Hedstrom — February 10, 2021 @ 8:23 AM

  6. Buy my book skeemers belong on the list!

    Comment by Frank Cummings — February 10, 2021 @ 8:25 AM

  7. I would like to preorder Dr. Amen’s new book coming out in March, can I have the link to do that?

    Comment by Janice Duncan — February 10, 2021 @ 8:45 AM

  8. Hello Janice, here is the link to pre-order and claim your free gifts:

    Comment by Amen Clinics — February 10, 2021 @ 8:47 AM

  9. I was unable to find your 90 min. presentation on the 9th.
    I’d love your book. I can follow Janice’s link!

    Comment by Gail — February 10, 2021 @ 9:55 PM

  10. I purchased the kindle version and so looking forward to early March.

    I like what you said Dr. Amen: We don’t need to ‘express’ every thought that comes into our minds – stop & think. This applies to conversations, posts, and our comments.

    I took the quiz already. I have the judgemental dragon. I tend to agree. Today, I started affirming: I am compassionate, understanding, and forgiving.

    Comment by Maria Cecilia Laraya — February 11, 2021 @ 12:48 AM

  11. Hello Gail, here is a link to watch the 90-minute presentation with Dr. Daniel Amen:

    Comment by Amen Clinics — February 11, 2021 @ 8:14 AM

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