The Capital One commercial asks, “What’s in your wallet?” as if personal peace comes through having the right credit card. Imagine if we bumped into radio and TV commercials throughout the day that ask, “What’s in your brain?” Okay, that also might get annoying pretty fast. But the idea of being good stewards of our thoughts and feelings isn’t a bad idea. Constant stress and ruminations rob us of the ability to experience vitality and joy.
Interestingly enough, we can choose our focus of attention. The emotional tag our brain places on certain experiences and personalities can make that quite challenging. Often, we need assistance in redirecting our focus and internal reactions.
One of my favorite “brain based techniques” is called “The Dimmer Switch.” Next time you are watching a scary movie, cover over your left eye while continuing to watch the movie. This action blocks input to the right side of your brain visually and will drop your anxiety buzz by a few points. You also might try another technique by rolling your eyes slowly in a clock wise fashion and then counter clock wise. This can help to interupt the emotional tag your brain places on life's events. Add humming a few bars of "happy birthday" to turbo charge this effect. This bi-lateral stimulation of the two hemipheres helps to reduce emotional intensity and makes it easier to "think and act" rather than just "reacting."
Brain research on relaxation and music yields some interesting results. Playing different types of music changes your brain chemistry. In effect, it can liberate your own brain’s inner resources to function at an optimum capacity. Mp3 players are now so inexpensive that most folk can load up their favorite relaxation music and have it available 24/7.
If your favorite song isn’t getting the job done, then you might need a more scientific approach to music. Check out the Brain Sync music produced by Kelly Howell (see link at top). This site has music that has been designed to increase brain waves correlated with focus, relaxation, increased creativity and even deep sleep. My experience is that they work exceptionally well.
In my mp3 player is Kelly Howell’s "Total Relaxation," "High Focus," "Deep Learning," and "Deep Meditation." They all work effectively and quickly to produce the desired results. My player also includes bio-lateral music by David Grand (http://www.biolateral.com/products.htm) that increases relaxation and assists with focus issues. Next to my stress buster mp3’s is my favorite good old fashion blues music. Track one of Gov't Mule is great for getting the juices flowing, but that is another story.