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The mind and its modes.

Our mind is like an exquisitely designed automatic transmission shifting smoothly from Delta (deep sleep) to Beta (the highest level of awareness) or from the subconscious levels; delta, theta and alpha to the conscious level – beta in seamlessly. Unfortunately, some people treat their minds much like they could a manual transmission, forcing their mind from first gear (sleep) straight into fourth (fully alert) while missing the important intermediate gears. Day after day they jump out of bed from a sound sleep and are out the door in twenty five minutes. When they miss these middle gears, they are missing out on the relaxing modes, the reflective modes, the introspective modes and the creative modes that are so essential at excelling at problem solving and learning.  Missing the middle modes causes extreme stress. Stress weakens the immune system and we get sick or suffer from syndromes.  Just as it is hard on a car to go from 1st to 4th, likewise it is hard on not only our minds but our bodies as well, to always be in either low gear (sleep) or high gear (fully engaged) and miss the essential middle modes of life.

When in hypnosis, the mind will shift from the alpha, the alpha-theta and into the theta mode. Great public speakers, actors, fighter pilots, artists and top performing athletes spend much time in the alpha, alpha–theta and theta modes.

Beta – 15 Hz to 20 Hz

I sometimes refer to it as the command mind as beta is the conscious or analytical mind. Beta is where we spend most of our waking moments. We experience emotional sensations in the beta mode such as anxiety, anger, excitement, fear, surprise and stress. In beta, the mind is fully engaged. If you’re trying to actively accomplish a task whether it is following a recipe or trying to hook up your high def television set, or at work or flying an airplane, you are in the beta mode. It’s also the only mode where we can detect danger.  Beta is verbal, math and linear skills. Any time that you analyze you are in beta. If a news program engages you, you are in beta – ergo you are not relaxing as you are not in the alpha mode. You are in your beta mode when you read this chapter! When one is in their beta mode their brain’s frequency is around 20 kHz.  A public speaker or someone arguing would be in a higher level of beta, kind of like overdrive in a car. In this state the frequencies can range up to 40 kHz! High beta is an extremely intense or engaged state like a minister giving a highly spirited sermon or someone arguing or delivering a speech.

In the initial stages of hypnosis our mind transitions from the beta waves to the alpha waves. Our mind is still alert but beginning to relax. I always remind people at the onset of a hypnosis session that when I say ”sleep” it is not the sleep that we think of going into at night, but I am using the word sleep is a shortcut for saying – relax… mentally, physically and emotionally.

Alpha – 9 Hz to 15 Hz

Alpha brain wave activity is found among highly creative and intuitive individuals including those with exceptional insight into solving complex problems. Alpha waves are also quite relaxing, which explains the ability of some individuals to find solutions that were elusive to others.  In fact, if you close your eyes while in an alpha state, your alpha waves will measurably increase. That is why closed eyes enable one to go into hypnosis more easily.  Children spend a lot of their time in the alpha mode. Quite often a child will exercise their imagination much more than many adults will. When an adult reduces the amount of time that they spend in alpha and replaces it by staying in the beta mode, they will lose much of and generally all of their problem solving ability. Problems are always solved with the imagination and creativity found in their alpha or theta mode – never in beta. Many adults become overwhelmed by the stresses of life and stay in the beta mode continually. Then they finally drop asleep out of sheer exhaustion at night which is the delta mode. As a result – they are tired when they go to sleep, and are still tired when they awaken.

The alpha mind has been called the creative mind. When you meditate or reflect you are in an alpha state. When you figure out how to solve a problem, you are in the alpha state. In fact when in the alpha mode, one’s learning rate will be sharply increased. When you are absorbed – you are in alpha. Alpha is the first level of the subconscious mind! Some individuals when hypnotized never drop any deeper than the alpha state. Some wonder when they are hypnotized for the very first time if they actually were in hypnosis as they might remark “I didn’t feel any differently.” That is quite normal. Your mind was designed in such a way that it will shift up and down through the different modes without you noticing it! Have you ever been aware of the exact moment when you drifted off to sleep? Of course not!

Research has shown that the alpha mode is an ideal state for learning. In alpha the mind is sharp and it is very receptive to suggestions and ideas and here is where we have our epiphanies. It’s in the alpha mode where our thoughts and concepts come together. The alpha mode is an inspired state of mind. When a person senses danger there are virtually no alpha brain waves present.

Those who spend more time in alpha have less stress and experience decreased anxiety. Alpha mode is great for releasing tension. However one cannot just will themselves into the alpha state any more than one can make themselves fall asleep. If one wants to make it easier to drift into alpha, do not ingest caffeine as caffeine suppresses both the alpha and theta brain waves.

Those that frequently utilize hypnosis, generate more alpha waves than those that do not! Research scientists have discovered that certain kinds of music similar to the soundtrack of Somewhere In Time, will allow the mind to drift easier from beta into alpha. You.ve heard of artists, jazz musicians; top athletes including some golfers and runners as being in the zone. They are so focused when they are in the alpha mode they are unaware of their surroundings and any distractions. When they are in their zone, they generate great bursts of alpha waves while continuing to function pretty much on auto pilot, like when driving a car or walking.

Theta 5 Hz to 9 Hz

Somnambulism. Very deep relaxation, serenity and creativity. When you finish a task and allow your mind to wander or daydream you are in theta mode. If you have ever been driving and looked around and can’t remember how you got there or where you are, you were in a theta.

Theta is a highly creative state. One will pass through theta on the way into delta (sleep), but one cannot go into theta on purpose without hypnosis. We then move from delta into theta in our ninety minute sleep cycles, we go into REM sleep. Rapid eye movement. It has been found that we will process up to 8 hours of new data in only five minutes in REM sleep. A dream or nightmare that felt like it went on for hours, most likely lasted from only three to twenty seconds. Wow!

People who lose themselves when they go for a walk, or take a shower, or go on a long drive; or any task where they are functioning automatically, often are literally flooded by ideas. When this happens, the mind has shifted down into the theta mode. If I get up in the morning and am not rushing myself and before I am fully awake, I often find myself flooded and awash with ideas – these are times when I’m in either high theta or low alpha. The mind shifts so seamlessly – who knows? An individual is far far better off easing into the day and will be much sharper, more creative and able to solve tasks and deal with life better, than someone who goes from delta (deep sleep) to beta (full arousal) in twenty five minutes. Those people don’t allow their mind to utilize their two intermediate gears or modes, alpha and theta. They never catch up because the miss these modes. They go from beta to delta to beta to delta day after day after day, thus never allowing themselves to get refreshed and renewed. Although I awaken at five, I generally take two hours before I leave the house. Theta mode is physical automatic pilot. When walking you don’t have to think: left foot, right foot, left foot, right foot – repeat. A class two theta state that is initiated in hypnosis enhances focus and memory retrieval. This therapy is referred to as regression. A person that is regressed during hypnosis is often able to remember incidents that they have forgotten or suppressed for many many years.

Delta 1.5 to 4 Hz

Delta mode is pretty much deep sleep with our brain running very slowly, not dreaming, no awareness, no consciousness and of course no emotions or feelings. Approximately every 90 minutes our brain starts running a little faster and move up into the theta mode and dreams. When the brain’s frequency climbs even higher we will experience the REM sleep – which we discussed earlier!

If you would like to fully utilize your potential, you need to utilize the most powerful computer that you will ever have… your own mind! Call Bob Crow for a complimentary consultation.

Bob Crow is a behavioral therapist board certified in clinical and medical hypnotherapy. He practices in Atlanta Georgia working with those wishing to overcome stress, panic, phobias, procrastination and fears. With those that wish to perform better in sports, sales, public speaking, to stop smoking, to lose weight permanently, to quit sabotaging relationships and any other area of behavioral change that would make life more enjoyable.

Bob Crow 404.277.1827 www.bobcrowhypnosis.com bob@bobcrowhypnosis.com

This material is the sole property of Bob Crow and his heirs. Copyright 2010 Bob Crow. Copying, duplicating, reprinting or transmitting this material in any form or any manner without the express written permission of Bob Crow or his heirs is strictly forbidden and is in violation of US and international law copyright law.

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