Brain and Mind in Balance

I often work with clients who tell me they can’t focus or concentrate, can’t get their thoughts to slow down for sleep or meditation, tend to worry and stress about things, and want to practice more positive thinking, but find themselves dwelling on the negative. And they want to know, only half-kidding, “Is there something wrong with my brain, or is it all in my head?”

In other words, is the problem simply about old thought patterns and old beliefs, or is there actually something out of balance on a physical/neurological level? I believe they overlap, and I think it’s important – and worthwhile – to look at both.

Balancing the Brain

For many years, long before I knew about EFT and other energy balancing techniques, I questioned the traditional, medical-model viewpoint about depression, anxiety, and other conditions being purely a matter of brain chemistry, especially when the idea of chemical imbalance was presented as permanent and “just the way it is.” I wondered if everyone who had a chemical imbalance had always had one, what caused it, and whether it could be re-balanced without the use of more chemicals.

The first tool I came across that was non-chemical, non-invasive, and highly effective, was Brain Gym , a method developed by Dr. Paul Dennison. Brain Gym uses a series of simple movements that help balance the brain in a number of ways. There’s been so much research done on it that it’s widely used in schools to help students focus, learn more easily, and remember what they’ve learned.

It also helps with reading comprehension, handwriting, physical coordination, reducing anxiety, and a vast number of other things. It’s easy to learn, and quick and easy to do on your own once you’ve learned it, and it’s effective for people of all ages. I still do elements of Brain Gym every morning to get a clear and positive start to my day.

Another holistic tool I’ve found very helpful is a CD called Mind Stim , which you can play in the background while you’re doing other things. It sounds like a water running in a stream or brook, but underneath that sound are two tones playing at different ultrasonic frequencies, which help stimulate and balance the brain.

The Mind Stim CD has been a great help for me personally. When I play it in the background while I’m at the computer, I get articles written, e-mails answered, and I stay on track much more easily than I do without it. When I play it in the office with clients, or in the classroom with students, my words and ideas flow more easily, I feel more clear and more alert – and so do the other people in the room with me.

I’ve played the Mind Stim CD for enough students and clients (some who were open, and some who were more skeptical) that I don’t doubt the effects anymore. I’ve seen people quickly become calmer, clearer, more awake, more alert, more still, and more focused.

My students tell me the light in the room gets brighter, the words on the page are easier to read, and concepts are easier to take in and understand. I had one woman tell me that within two minutes of starting the CD, a migraine headache she’d had for three days went away completely. I can’t promise any particular results, but I know what I’ve seen and experienced.

Change Your Brain, Change Your Life

In 2006, I read a wonderful book called Change Your Brain, Change Your Life, by Dr. Daniel Amen. He pinpoints how activity (or lack of activity) in five different areas of the brain often directly relates to depression, anxiety, focus issues, impulsiveness, worry/obsessing, temper, memory, and a whole list of other difficulties that we usually think of as psychological or emotional issues. And you can clearly see what he’s talking about through pictures of SPECT scans he’s done over the years.

For me, one of the most helpful pieces of information was about an area of the brain called the cingulate, which is the brain’s “gear shifter.” When the cingulate is balanced, you can easily shift your thoughts from one topic to another, or stop thinking about something when you decide you’ve had enough.

But when the cingulate is out of balance, you get repetitive, looping thoughts and worries (obsessing), and it’s hard to shut those thoughts off no matter how hard you try. The good news is that the cingulate, and every other part of the brain, can return to balance.

Dr. Amen offers a number of ideas and tools for balancing the brain. He’s a medical doctor, so he does discuss medications, but he understands that many people don’t want to go that route, so he offers other options as well, which I appreciate. With my clients, I’ve taken his information and addressed it using EFT, with very positive results, both immediate and long term.

Eventually, I wrote an e-book called Balance Your Brain With EFT, to make it easier for clients to work with this information at home and stay more balanced on an ongoing basis. Click on the link if you'd like more information about the e-book.

Balancing the Mind

Once the brain itself is more balanced, we can turn to improving balance in the mind – our thoughts, beliefs, what we choose to focus on, the feelings we have as a result, and the behavioral patterns and habits that follow. EFT is the most simple, straightforward and powerfully effective tool I’ve found for releasing unproductive thoughts, beliefs, patterns, old traumas, and the accompanying feelings, and allowing in more positive and peaceful thinking. Please see the EFT section of this site for more specific information.

Beyond those specifics, the thing that seems to help the most people balance their thoughts, beliefs, and feelings is to find ways to step back from the immediate situation, where things often look and feel negative or scary, and look at the bigger picture, which is usually far more positive and peaceful. This may involve meditation, a spiritual path, philosophy, or some other form of exploration of who you really are.

One book that’s received a lot of attention recently is Eckhart Tolle’s A New Earth. While I don’t agree or resonate with everything he presents in the book, what I do really appreciate is his discussion of ego (identifying with the small picture, believing that my career, clothes, financial status, etc., are “who I am”), and what lies beyond ego – the deeper, much more expanded picture of who we really are. I found the book worth reading just for that.

And of course the Abraham-Hicks Law of Attraction materials offer a phenomenal big-picture view of who we really are, what we’re doing here, and how to allow in all the well-being that’s available to us. Abraham also teaches very specific ways to practice shifting thoughts in more positive directions, and to shift our vibration, little by little, toward everything we’ve ever desired, and more.

Whatever approach you prefer, my experience has been that we can definitely bring our minds back into balance, even if we’ve been far out of balance for a very long time. And it doesn’t have to be a difficult uphill climb. There are great tools and great teachings available to all.

How Can Coaching Help Me With This?

I can work with you to sort through your concerns, and then I’d be happy to recommend, teach, and practice specific exercises with you, designed to allow your brain and/or mind to return to their natural, healthy balance and alignment. A combination of Brain Gym, EFT, and some practice at seeing the bigger picture have been most helpful to me, my family, and numerous students and clients. I can help you find the combination that works best for you.

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