Presented by Jonathan Cowan and Estate Sokhadze: There is a basic truth we often forget: We can create happiness directly from within ourselves. Relatively few people, except for those exposed to positive psychology techniques, know how to control the transition between an ordinary mood and a very happy one.
Learning to do this well and sustain it is very valuable in general, but particularly so now, when the COVID-19 crisis has taken away so many of our sources of happiness and other positive feelings, and may continue to do so indefinitely. The best way to deal with this “happiness deficit” is to learn to make the neuropsychological transition in brain function to activate the brain’s reward systems, based primarily on increasing dopamine function. This self-control can be learned by generalizing a particular type of neurofeedback training—enhancing the Neureka! rhythm—to other situations in our life by a simple practice we call “Happitation”. This transition starts with a deep inhalation, followed by coupling the exhalation with the practice of the skill of enhancing Neureka! output, remembered from Neureka! and Focus training sessions on the Happi Trainer. By repeating this a number of times, a feeling of extreme happiness can be created and sustained, even while other activities are being performed.
We believe that control of this transition is natural and based primarily on changing basic biological systems, which are more powerful sustainers of mood than psychological practices, although these certainly can be taught together. Our studies of neurofeedback combining single pointed Focus via our InhibitAll protocol with enhancing clarified 40 Hz. rhythm—Neureka!—have shown that we can enhance happiness for at least 4 months after just twelve 25-minute sessions of training. We also demonstrated pre- to post-training improvements in both attention and memory, which we believe are predominantly due to Neureka! The combination of these three improvements is exactly what would be expected from enhanced dopamine levels in the prefrontal cortex and elsewhere.
This training study built on a group of three experiments which demonstrated a more specific relationship between Neureka! levels and positive feelings, including happiness, love, satisfaction, joy, gratitude, mindfully watching, anticipating something good, and Aha! There were negative relationships between Neureka! and stress, disappointment, and boredom. Counteracting these three are particularly important now.
Neurofeedback trainers should recognize that there is an increased demand for training that will teach people to be happy whenever they want to create it from within themselves. Although this direct teaching of the most important goal in life stated by many Eastern sages has been elusive, recent progress in neurofeedback makes Happitation training very possible on a widespread scale.
It also offers a new therapeutic approach for decreasing the addict’s dependence on outside sources for the creation of their happiness. This is a real key to counteracting addiction.