NeuroMeditation is the method of applying brain-based knowledge and principles to the practice of meditation. At its heart, this process approaches meditation as mental training and recognizes that different styles of meditation require different types of attention, intention, and brain activation patterns. From a mental health perspective we have used this information to identify how each of the 5 neuromeditation styles may help with specific concerns.
Using EEG biofeedback (neurofeedback), we can provide the meditator with immediate feedback on their brainwave state during a meditation practice, helping to define and refine the process. Because meditation and neurofeedback are both involved in the training of mental states, these practices can be used to enhance each other as a treatment intervention for specific mental health conditions such as ADHD, anxiety, depression, or PTSD.
When used as a therapeutic intervention, we start with an intake assessment to help clarify your goals and concerns. In this way, we can individualize the process to identify which neuromeditation style(s) will help your brain become more flexible, focused, and resilient. Click here to learn more about which NeuroMeditation Styles might be a good fit for you.
The 5 Styles of NeuroMeditation
Focus- The Focus Style of NeuroMeditation emphasizes holding attention on a single object. These practices are associated with increased activation of the frontal lobes and help train the mind to improve a variety of cognitive functions including sustaining attention, reducing mind wandering, improving reaction time, and working memory. This style is a match for ADHD, cognitive decline, mild traumatic brain injury and active depression.
Mindfulness- The Mindfulness Style of NeuroMeditation emphasizes observing your thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations more objectively, learning to create distance from internal reactions, bringing attention more fully to the present moment, and accepting things as they are without grasping, clinging, or pushing things away. This style is ideal for managing chronic stress and anxiety.
Open Heart- The Open Heart Style of NeuroMeditation emphasizes activating and enhancing positive feeling states, such as love, compassion, generosity, gratitude, or joy. These practices activate brain regions associated with attention, empathy, and emotional processing. This style is a good match for non-active depression, unresolved grief, empathy training, and resentment.
Quiet Mind- The Quiet Mind Style of NeuroMeditation represents the common view of meditation-that of entering a state of consciousness that is pure awareness or emptiness, with no specific thoughts or images present. These practices are particularly helpful in learning to reduce the amount and intensity of internal self-talk, thinking, analyzing, or processing. This style is a good match for chronic pain, OCD, substance abuse, and eating disorders.
Deep States-The Deep States Style of NeuroMeditation can sometimes resemble a hypnotic state, but is often about learning to let go of the normal controlling factors of the ego as well as accepting and integrating neglected aspects of the “self.” This style can be very helpful in the process of softening defenses, learning to navigate altered states of consciousness, and as a treatment process for a range of concerns including PTSD and addictions.
Once we have identified goals and established a treatment plan, subsequent sessions will combine neurofeedback with meditation coaching to help you focus your attention in the specific way each meditation style requires. Typically, sessions will occur once weekly for 6-12 weeks with “homework” to reinforce the skills involved in this form of mental training. Because this is considered mental training and requires some consistency to realize any benefit, we ask that clients commit to a minimum of 6 sessions.
- Package of 6 sessions: $660
- Package of 8 sessions: $800
Package of 12 sessions: $1080
Non-Ordinary State Psychotherapy (NOSP)
Non-Ordinary State Psychotherapy (NOSP)
When used in a therapeutic context, the induction of non-ordinary states (sometimes referred to as altered states) can aid in the process of psychological, emotional, and spiritual healing. In the right environment and with the right intention, these techniques can become a tool for greater self-awareness and exploration. There is a long history in the fields of psychology and psychiatry of using non-ordinary states of consciousness to facilitate deep psychological work. Following models provided by psychedelic therapies (using MDMA, psilocybin, and Ketamine), Holotropic breathwork, and Medicinal Mindfulness, the sessions themselves are largely non-directive. We assist in providing a safe space for the exploration of the non-rational, non-linear, non-verbal aspects of the mind, where many of our unresolved issues and historical traumas reside. These non-ordinary states of consciousness often facilitate increases in awareness, new understandings, and an improved outlook regarding the self and symptoms. This practice can be powerful and is best navigated with a guide or support that has significant mental health training. We use a variety of methods to induce a non-ordinary state including sound/vibration, breathwork, neurofeedback, light stimulation, and evocative music.
Before working with non-ordinary states in a session, we will spend 1-3 sessions exploring prior experience with non-ordinary states, motivations, and intentions for working with these states. These sessions will also be used as time for the therapist and client to begin building a therapeutic relationship, for symptom assessment, and treatment planning. This is also a time to familiarize the client with the process and method of non-ordinary state psychotherapy including mindfulness, visualization skills, and body-focused practices. In some cases, we may work with breathwork, and or neuromeditation protocols as an entry into this type of therapy. Following the non-ordinary states session, we will meet for an additional 1-3 sessions to integrate the experience.
Psychedelic medicines are now being used in a variety of research settings in the United States and abroad to treat psychological concerns including PTSD, depression, end-of-life concerns, and addictions. As these treatments options are still undergoing FDA trials, they are not currently available in an outpatient setting in the United States. While I am currently unable to provide this form of treatment, a primary focus of my practice is in supporting individuals who choose to work therapeutically and skillfully with psychedelic medicines on their own. Working from a harm reduction perspective, I offer non-judgmental, mindfulness-based counseling and guidance to clients in my care. I support clients in discerning between cannabis and/or psychedelic use and misuse and in developing healthier relationships with these powerful tools. I also teach therapeutic skill sets and offer alternative methods for exploring altered states with therapeutic intention.
Integration support is a primary focus of my clinical work. Psychedelics can be inherently dysregulating and disruptive to the homeostasis of our lives, which is how/why they can be a powerful catalyst for change. In an effort to increase the likelihood of personal growth and symptom reduction and minimize the likelihood of confusion or fear, it is critically important that persons choosing this path are ready for the experience. With this in mind, I offer preparation and integration services for those that choose to work with this medicine. I do not support unsafe medicine practices, and I strongly caution my clients against “just trying something out” or using psychedelics as a “party drug.” These medicines are incredibly powerful and need to be treated with the utmost respect. Being board certified in neurofeedback, one of my specialties is using brain wave biofeedback to support and deepen the integration process. This work can assist with learning to navigate internal landscapes, mental flexibility, creativity, as well as stabilization of “the ego.”
As a harm reduction advocate, I do not encourage any illegal activities or the use or abuse of cannabis or any other medicine. Nor do I believe that cannabis or psychedelic medicine exploration, even within the confines of applicable laws, is appropriate or beneficial for everyone.
Peak Brain Training
Peak Brain Training
Through the combination of neuromodulation technologies, this individualized program is designed to assist your brain toward increased flexibility, adaptability, and resilience. We begin with an assessment allowing us to compare your brainwave activity to a normative database. Along with an interview and questionnaires, the intake process provides an opportunity to consider your brain’s baseline functioning and identify specific targets for brain training.
In most cases, training will use multiple technologies as well as “homework.” Some of the technologies are more passive and involve stimulating the brain using light, sound, or electromagnetic frequencies (photobiomodulation, audio visual entrainment, low power repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation).
Other technologies are active and require the client to learn to shift their state of consciousness toward improved functioning (biofeedback, neurofeedback). Each training protocol is designed specifically for that client and their goals/needs. In some cases, we can even measure your brain on a “good day” and use that as a baseline to encourage your brain to do that more often.
This type of training can be helpful for clients managing symptoms related to chronic illness or mild Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI). It can also be used for clients who are already functioning well, but are interested in peak performance.