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Antecedent

Neurofeedback experiences, let's share

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I bought a home kit, so my experiences won't reflect what you might get going to a qualified therapist or clinical psychologist working with this tool or something similar. There are a few of these on the market, most of them are between $150 and $300, I just chose the cheapest one I could get, I don't want to give them free advertising but if you do want to know the name send me a message :)

So how does it work. With my particular one how it works is, you put on this plastic headset, then they tell you to think about whatever you want while the set gets used to your brainwaves, then there's a short introduction telling you how to meditate, then there is a soundscape and a timer for you to meditate. Every time your brainwaves get more active the sound gets louder or more intense (e.g. heavy rain), every time they get less active they get quieter (e.g. light rain), and if you are really calm you are rewarded with the sound of birds.

Goals:
I have ADHD and all that goes with it, I'm not great at self care, partly because typical ADHD style I have a very small range of intense interests that aren't particularly relaxing. So yeah, if this can help my concentration, reduce my anxiety, stave off depression, and help me relax and recharge then it will be worth 1000 times what i paid for it. Neurofeedback (not necessarily cheap home kits) is supposed to be excellent for trauma and PTSD, I don't have PTSD but I have some traumatic grief and what goes with it.

I'm on Day 3 now.

Pros:

- I'm meditating much more often and it's way easier to meditate for longer periods of time, I never did more than maybe 6 minutes before, now I can do 20, 30 and I haven't felt bored yet!
- I think it would work fantastically for people who think in pictures, because it always notices immediately when i start visualizing something, the rain pours down, the waves roar etc.
- It's fun. I tried meditating with it, tried sleeping with it, tried watching tv with it, and it was fun looking at the different brainwaves.
- the premise is it will teach me how to be calm, and how to bring on that feeling of calm in other situations away from the headset (after all, how could i calm myself down when I'm completely unfamiliar with the feeling of calm?). That seems pretty plausible considering how it's going so far
- it's cheaper than therapy
- if all it ends up doing is motivating me to have a solid meditation practice until it breaks, that will be fantastic in and of itself... but maybe it can do more? I hope?

Cons:

- like I said, it notices if I start visualizing but if my mind wanders off in words it often thinks I'm still calm and focused on the breath, it knows I'm not super calm though, when you are super calm little birds tweet
- It's a specific type of meditation I'm practising, even though they do all different guided meditations at the start of the session, the system itself encourages you to relax and stay calm, an important side of mindful meditation is when you feel bored and you stay with that feeling and explore what being bored is like, or you want the session to be over, and you explore what it feels like to "want" or "crave" something, or whatever other feeling comes up, this one rewards you for staying calm calm calm. 

- The brain waves are always relative to the configuration at the beginning, which you redo each time, I'd love to see some numbers, so i can compare between days or times rather than comparing different moments within one session

Update day... 5? 6? It hasn't cured my ADHD i guess :D

- Enjoying it, meditating every day and looking forward to meditating
- yeah, I feel calm generally, but is that related to this or am I having a good week? I guess actually I'm having an ok week, lots of little inconveniences, but i've ridden the waves pretty well. Let this be the start of some new calm me! it takes time, but i'm feeling pretty motivated recently, so if that's from this it means I get a huge net gain, because i waste so much time through lack of motivation

Edited by Antecedent

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Update: I had a long day today. Usually at the end of a long day I feel really fluy, and during the day I think about self harm a lot, I tried to calm myself using what i've been learning, tried to bring myself into a more relaxed state instead of doing that, and it seemed to work somewhat? I feel less sick than usual, and less tired, coincidence? Could be a coincidence. Will keep at it :)

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Ok I think this is day 12

I'm meditating more, I still can't reliably create calm on demand according to the app. I see other people who have been doing it for months on the facebook page, and you see how their minds start off active, then drop immediately into calm when they start meditating adn stay like that until the end when they decide they want to stop. Mine still goes up and down a lot more than that

So what about my life in general?

No huge dramatic changes, but I am definitely getting more done. I'd say I'm tidying/cleaning about 3% more, but it's enough to be noticeable, and I feel noticeably calmer and a bit happier too. Now maybe I'm just having a good 2 weeks by coincidence, or maybe it's all this meditation, or maybe it's all this meditation with the app and headset helping (and not just motivating me to meditate more, which would be cool in itself)

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I've never heard of this before. Where did you buy the kit? Is there a website or product page for it online so i can see it? 

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