Rewiring your brain with technology
In October 2017, I had the opportunity to experiment with brain enhancing technology at the Bulletproof® Conference.
I know what you’re thinking. Isn’t using technology to enhance your mind cheating? Why not meditate the old school way? My answer: yes, it is cheating but if it gets you there quicker, then why not?
In this blog I review 4 of the mind technologies I experimented with. Whether you’re looking for a 10% or a 10x improvement in your cognitive capabilities, there’s something for every biohacker.
What is it: Muse is a headband that measures brain waves whilst you meditate. The Muse headband provides realtime feedback through a bluetooth connected smartphone app. Meditate well, you’ll hear birds tweeting. Meditate bad, you’ll hear storms.
Price range: $200–300.
Conclusion: This is the entry level piece of tech for mind hacking. I have to confess, I thought I was too good a meditator to bother with the Muse. I was so humbled after trying it, I bought one. I won’t use it every day, but to keep score every so often.
What is it: NuCalm combines cranial electrostimulation, neuroacoustic music and topical neurotransmitter supplementation. These work in sync to entrain brain waves to the relaxed alpha states.
Price range: $2,500-$3,000.
Conclusion: 20 minutes of this was like getting two hours of deep sleep. Great for jet lag and working late against deadlines.
What is it: NeurOptimal measures brain patterns via electrodes attached to the scalp. An advanced algorithm analyses brain waves and provides feedback through music. The music re-wires brain patterns.
Price range: $7,000-$11,000.
Conclusion: Using this was effortless. There’s no straining to focus on breathing. Entrainment is automatic. Simply plug in for 45 minutes and get into alpha state. Long term use can lead to increased creativity and improved stress response along with many other benefits.
4. 40 Years of Zen
What is it: This is the big gun. 40 Years of Zen is a five day intensive where your brain is finely mapped and a neurofeedback program tailored to you. A team of neuroscientists are required to service this program and they take no more than five participants at a time. Attendees can expect to go deep on the emotional and thinking patterns that keep them from unlocking their potential. This is not a program for everyone.
Price range: $15,000.
Conclusion: I only sampled 20 minute slice of the intensive, but the feedback from previous 40 Years of Zen graduates was impressive. It can be tough going but with tremendous results. Great for healing life-long hidden traumas.
These technologies have different capabilities and times and places for using. Whilst they can be expensive, my hope is that in the future they will drop in price and will be as ubiquitous as the iPhone.
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