But as irony would have it, on December 10, 1996, Dr. Taylor woke up to discover that she was experiencing a rare form of stroke, an arterio-venous malformation (AVM). Two and a half weeks later, on December 27, 1996, she underwent major brain surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital to remove a golf ball size blood clot that was placing pressure on the language centers in the left hemisphere of her brain.
It took eight years for Dr. Taylor to successfully rebuild her brain - from the inside out. In response to the swelling and trauma of the stroke, which placed pressure on her dominant left hemisphere, the functions of her right hemisphere blossomed. Among other things, she now creates and sells unique stained glass brains when commissioned to do so. In addition, she published a book about her recovery from stroke and the insights she gained into the workings of her brain. The New York Times bestselling memoir is titled My Stroke of Insight: A Brain Scientist's Personal Journey.
Dr. Taylor recently created Jill Bolte Taylor BRAINS, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing educational services and promoting programs related to the advancement of brain awareness, appreciation, exploration, education, injury prevention, neurological recovery, and the value of movement on mental and physical health, as well as other activities that support this purpose. The Brain Extravaganza! is the not-for-profits’ first educational awareness program being brought first to the community of Bloomington, Indiana, and then throughout the world.
In addition to working on the Brain Extravaganza!, Dr. Jill is creating a serious game for neurological health and recovery. She feels passionately about helping others find their way back from neurological trauma. In addition, an upcoming feature film of her life is in development by Ron Howard and Sony Pictures.
Dr. Jill remains the National Spokesperson for the Harvard Brain Tissue Resource Center (Harvard Brain Bank) and educates the public about the shortage of brain tissue donated for research into severe mental illness. Since 1993, she has been an active member of NAMI (the National Alliance on Mental Illness) and is currently the president of the NAMI Greater Bloomington Area affiliate in Bloomington, Indiana.
A film about JIll’s life is scheduled to be released in late 2016.
- Ninety Seconds to Happiness
A focus on understanding how the choices we make and the thoughts we think directly influence our level of joy.
- How to Capitalize On Our Two Hemispheres
A focus on the talents and skills of each of our hemispheres and how to develop them.
- Who's Who Inside of You?
A focus on identifying the two very different personalities within each of our hemispheres with an intention of developing our ability to choose, moment by moment, who and how we want to be in the world.
- How to Get Your Brain to Do What You Want It to Do
A focus on how to create a healthy environment for the cells inside our heads and how to communicate with them for optimal health and performance.
- My Stroke of Insight
A focus on Dr. Jill's personal story and why she grew up to study the brain, her research activities, and her own brain disorder.