Our brains are fascinating and I love reading about the latest findings into how we think or how our brains work. I did dabble in both psychology and neuroscience during my academic career at various points but, unfortunately for me, it wasn't one of my strong points and had to be abandoned. Luckily all is not lost and five years later I get to work on a project where I co-ordinate researchers who are a lot better at these two subjects than I am.
Live Science is an excellent project that brings researchers from across the country into the Science Museum to meet our visitors. The public then have the chance to be involved with real scientific research while the researchers have the opportunity to collect a huge amount of data that will help them with their research. The latest project, Is there a link between you and me? brings researchers from Middlesex University and City, University of London together to explore how our perception of others affects how we view ourselves.
If the word research made you automatically think of people in white lab coats, boring surveys or invasive tests, think again. This research is very interactive and involves four tasks, three of which are game-based. The games cover mental rotation, motion perception and a fun but slightly weird tactile experiment that includes a foot pedal. If that doesn't sound interesting, I don't know what would!
Each of the tasks is designed to help the researchers explore the idea that someone who pays a high level of attention to their own bodies could have increased anxiety about their own physical health. The research may also help find a link between how you understand your own physicality and how you understand the physicality of other people.
After doing the tasks, I found myself proud that I was quite good at the game-based tasks but I also went away thinking of things about myself that I hadn't really considered before. It made me more aware of how I focus on my body and how I might understand the link between my mentality and my physicality. It also felt good to be part of a research project that could help scientists discover more about myself and the people around me.
If you fancy coming to the museum to be a part of Live Science, the researchers will be in the Who Am I? gallery every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday until 18 November 2017.
If you're a researcher and feel inspired by the Live Science project, please keep a look out for our online applications that will open in early November.