I’ve not been good with meditation in the past. I’ve tried a few methods, such as guided meditations, but I have a very active mind and it’s hard for me to not get frustrated with the constant having to resettle myself and clear out. And yes, I know that isn’t the point, that you’re supposed to just let the thoughts go, notice them and then just let them clear out, but it got to the point where I was going into the meditations with a bit of resentment, and that’s not gonna help anything, right?
Then last week, I was listening to the Urban Monk podcast, and on it Dr. Pedram Shojai was talking to a gentleman named Bill Harris. Bill Harris is a former Zen monk who has been studying meditation in many forms for years, and in his studies he learned that scientists have used electroencephalogram (EEG) technology to discover sound waves that can gently push a person into various meditation states. You may have heard of alpha and beta waves (and perhaps others) if you do any reading about meditation and its benefits and effects. Beta waves are pretty much just our “everyday living” waves – focused on cognitive tasks and general consciousness. Alpha waves indicate a state of mindfulness and can be stimulated via meditation or even deep sleep. They’re awesome for promotion of stress relief and creative thinking. There are other waves that indicate more deep mindfulness and awareness, and all are valuable and can help to reset neurological pathways by inciting neuron growth in new ways.
Harris’s product, Holosync, is a product that harnesses these soundwaves at varying levels so that you can push yourself to regrow these pathways without actually having to be “good at” meditation. It’s basically a series of MP3s or CDs that contain meditation-inducing sound waves along with cool nature and bell sounds and help guide you slowly into a healthier brain – less stress and anxiety, more awareness and mindfulness, and healthier behavior. According to Harris, it does this eight time faster than meditation alone. All you have to do is listen, it doesn’t matter if you have thoughts entering your head or not. And it’s remarkably priced – very reasonable.
The idea is that you listen to these sounds for a half-hour to an hour depending on where you are in the program – I’m currently at the half-hour level. You can listen to them while you’re sleeping and have the same effects – for example, if available time is a factor, Harris suggests saving time by putting the sounds on for the last half hour or hour of your normal sleep each morning.
So I’ve been trying it since Sunday. Sunday’s results are inconclusive because my son woke up and joined me downstairs (and he’s not quiet, he really has no internal monologue sometimes) and I was getting interrupted a bit. Not very relaxing or productive.
But Monday… I came downstairs at 4:30 for my first real solo excursion into the world of Holosync, listening to the “dive” program (as in “dive in to meditation”) and just chilling on the couch. It was just me, my headphones (you do need stereo headphones for this program, just listening to the tones without them won’t help as much, apparently), a dark room, and 30 minutes of rain sounds, bells, and whatever other wave-generating sounds were going on in the background. I lay down and closed my eyes.
Dudes and dudettes… this may be the answer for me.
I felt nearly tingly at times with the effects of the Holosync. I came out of the session and had to just chill in the dark for a few minutes, as the instructions suggested, and had to sort of bring myself back into the room. I opened my eyes and was awake and alert in a big way. And I felt it all day – my first day, I was in a great mood all morning and got a ton of stuff done. I got reading done that morning on some fairly science-y stuff and was able to follow it like I don’t feel I have in quite a while.
Overall, I’m feeling motivated to get things done. I’m not tired – even though Sunday was a big day of hiking and family stuff and I could very well be exhausted – one of those nights where sleep was a bit restless (see above).
I’m withholding complete judgement till I have a few days or even a couple weeks of this, but I am very excited about where this could go.
Holosync’s basic package comes with the “dive” and “immersion” programs that help with the resetting of the neural pathways, but also a couple of other programs that allow for better concentration while doing work (beta-wave improvement, perhaps?) that I am trying as I write this, and one that helps with acceptance of change. They also have other programs you can work with later after you’ve done the basic program for a time.
I’m excited to keep going with this and journal my results to you – Harris claims two million people having tried his product over the years. There’s also a money-back guarantee if you don’t get results, so you’ve got really nothing to lose. (No, I’m not an affiliate or anything, just excited and want to share this with you).
Give it a shot. It’s effective, inexpensive, and so far I love it. You can find Harris’s products at his website, Centrepoint Research Institute.
Have you tried meditation? Has it helped? What techniques do you use? Share your experiences on our message board!