CSN Processes

The complex interaction of two opposed active processes take place in the nervous centers of the cerebral cortex: excitation and inhibition. Excitation of certain parts of the brain inhibits the other parts. This explains why a person stops reacting to the environment if he is absorbed by some other activity. Thus, for instance, switching your attention is connected with the transition of excitation from one part of your brain to another other as well as the inhibition of abandoned parts. Excitation and inhibition can be either balanced or with one prevailing over the other; they can have various strengths and progress from one center to another and replace each other in the same center, i.e. they feature certain mobility.

Nervous System Types

Nervous system strength is an innate value and is used to denote the endurance and capacity of your nervous cells. Nervous system strength indicates the ability of its nervous cells to endure strong or long excitation without going into the inhibition stage.

Nervous system properties don’t predetermine any kind of behavior, but they do form the basis on which some behavior forms are more likely to develop than others. Nervous system strength doesn’t influence productivity; any person can be highly productive. Nervous system strength does define the means and conditions that let a person be highly productive and helps to designate an individuals working style.

There are no good or bad nervous systems. A weak nervous system is a system of low capacity for work (in a physiological sense), but at the same time is very sensitive, while a strong nervous systems is less sensitive, but more efficient. Sometimes sensitivity and inertness are more preferable than endurance, and vice-versa.

Speed of Response

Speed of response — how fast it takes you to start a voluntary action in response to stimuli. The speed of response is defined by two aspects: first, the speed of signal apprehension, and second, the speed of your actions.

The speed of apprehension (when our brain is recognizing and classifying the stimulus) depends on a person’s physiological features and experience. Physiological features of the nervous system cannot be influenced or trained, but you can gain experience. An experienced driver can react faster and more properly to any situation on the road than a novice.

The speed of the body and various muscles depends on the person. A trained boxer is more likely to be quicker than an average person, who only watches boxing on TV.


There are 3 main kinds of reaction: simple reaction; discrimination reaction; choice reaction.

Simple reaction — person responses with a certain action to some predefined signal, e.g., red light flashes on the fire safety board and the firewatcher switches on the siren. Simple reaction is especially important in competitions, for example, when the sprinter must quickly react to the starting shot and spring forward.

Discrimination reaction — person responds only to one signal out of several accidental ones, e.g., a good mom will always hear her child tossing and turning in the adjacent room even if it’s noisy around.

Choice reaction — person reacts to several or all various signals with various actions, e.g., work of traffic-controller, who must give various correct directions to all road users.