Being in Flow

What I Learned About Flow State from Having My Brain Zapped by One of the World's Leading Neuropsychiatrists

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It took two days before I realized what had happened. Two days before I understood that secretly, silently I had entered a world of continual Flow. It was one of those moments where you feel so much clarity and certainty that it’s like you can’t put a foot down wrong. Except the moment stretched out with unending horizon. But this was just the beginning; the “aha moment” when it dawned on me that things were different.

“…humanity has arrived in a new world”

And in that moment I knew that humanity has arrived in a new world. This is a world in which, more often than not, our brains are healthy, well, and programmable. As William Gibson is fond of saying, “The future is already here — it’s just not very evenly distributed.” I had just stumbled into a pulse point of our future and it was better, simpler, and more natural then I would ever have suspected.

The world I entered was the Brain Wellness Center of Dr. Hasan Asif and his fiancé and business partner, Dr. Aza Mantashashvili; a mecca for applied neuropsychiatry tended by two pioneers quietly reshaping the landscape of brain health and wellness. Here in their temple of brain optimization I experienced 90-minutes of expertly placed magnetic bursts to my brain, neurofeedback, neuromodulation and a thorough education in the new world of neuro-enhancement from two of the best in the business.

“…access to the programming language of our brains and ourselves”

Updates in science and technology are now giving us the ability to peer into our own brains, retrain them back to balance, and even optimize them for new kinds of upgraded performance. Sitting on the front lines of this technology gives insight into what makes us tick, flow, stress, laugh, ruminate, remember, feel pain, and a host of other experiences we have known from the inside out – subjectively – but not from the outside in. Now, brain science, and particularly the technologies that allow us to see our own brainwaves objectively and in-time has given us access to the programming language of our brains and ourselves.

Guided by two of the world’s leaders in this cutting edge technology, here are 3 key insights I’ve found visiting that frontier and what they mean for you:

I. Our brains are always seeking homeostasis even if sometimes they need a little help getting there.

What it means to you:
If you’re willing to put in the work, you can balance your brain. The new era of brain enhancement means that along with some professional input and technology, you can update your brain to its most optimal state. Having now seen Drs. Asif and Mantashashvili heal up everyone from schizophrenics to veterans with PTSD and people suffering with depression, I know that having healthy brains is an inevitable part of our future. Your brain is designed to seek balance and if it gets stuck in a rut, we now have the ability to tweak it in far more accurate and healthy ways then we ever have before.

II. Being in extraordinary states costs a lot of energy. Balance and flexibility are what you’re really after!

What it means to you:
From skydivers, to extreme sport fanatics, to Burners and everyone in between, people are obsessed with Peak States. In other words, they want heightened experiences in which they think little, perform better, and get totally lost in the moment. The problem is this: while heightened states are exhilarating, amazing, and can feel like something you want all the time, they are not a sensible solution for everyday life. The reason is that energetically these states are very costly to maintain.

One of the things that happened when I was with the docs was that I went into a state I’d practiced for decades – deep connectedness with heavy undertones of calm, ecstatic joy. But when I asked for them to stabilize this state, they told me it would be too much energy for my brain to maintain. Instead, there’s a different solution: balance.

With a mind to your own optimization, the best thing you can aim for is a stable and balanced brain that has access to any and all states, emotions, and abilities, but that naturally returns to a calm neutral state when at rest. In other words, use heightened states to push the boundaries of what’s possible for you, but seek always to have a brain that is simple, relaxed, and aware when not otherwise engaged. This keeps you ready to respond to whatever shows up in your life and flexible enough to handle the situation in the best way possible.

III. Balance Yourself. Enhance At Will.
What it means to you:
The most important thing you can do is to bring yourself back to balance. You already know when you’re out of balance, because inside you feel as though something is a little off. On the other hand, when you’re in balance, you’re simply present and ready to engage the world. Once that happens, you can enhance any of your brain’s abilities. From an increase in creativity to a higher IQ to athletic flow on demand, the technology of brain science allows you to tweak, balance, and create the superhero version of yourself that is your natural birthright.  
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