Over the past few decades, brain researchers have produced incredible findings on the working of the brain, largely facilitated by new measuring techniques like CT and MRI scans. Part of this research has been focused on the relationship between brainwaves and consciousness. Personally, in addition to professional activities in management consulting, I have been using an EEG machine to work with clients for individual brain wave measurement and feedback for 10 years. To broaden my coaching toolbox, I chose to participate in the Spring 2011 MMS CT.
Our brains produce electrical impulses constantly. These currents of electricity, or brain waves, are measured by amplitude and frequency, using an EEG machine. The frequency determines the category of brain wave – beta, alpha, theta or delta. The combination of these brain wave categories underlies our state of consciousness at any given time; for example, normal daily activities, being asleep, in meditation or in ‘flow.’ Each brainwave category has its own characteristics.
- “Beta” brain waves are the fastest and are produced by the thinking mind. Beta is required to articulate thoughts or feelings. If Beta becomes overactive it can engage in commenting or judging.
- “Alpha” is relaxed detached awareness, or the daydreaming mind. With Alpha we sensualize, using all five senses. Alpha is also the gateway to meditation and deeper states of consciousness.
- “Theta” brain waves are produced by the subconscious mind. Theta is present in dreaming sleep, but also in deep meditation. Theta is the storehouse of creative inspiration and also of repressed psychological memories. Theta provides the “Peak” in peak experiences.
- “Delta” is always present, even in the deepest sleep. It acts as a kind of ‘radar’ or subconscious scanning device that underlies your intuition, and empathy.
In the ‘flow ‘or ‘high performance state,’ which MMS CT coaches have experienced in moments of insight (the ‘aha’ or ‘wow ‘moment), bliss or peak performance, the EEG shows that all categories of brain waves are present at the same time, allowing for a flow of information between the different brain wave categories, the conscious and the sub conscious. The whole brain works together in synchrony, which can be observed on the EEG.
In my work as a coach and trainer I use the information I gather on the brain waves of clients while using a MindMirror EEG during the coaching process. The combination of the context, the inner experience (as reported by the client) and the measurement of brain waves, provides valuable insights for the client and direction for the coaching process. For the client, understanding the meaning of how the different brainwaves work together coupled with individual feedback often illumines and gives rise to the acknowledgment of what has been known on the intuitive level. Recognizing individual brainwave patterns can be compared to understanding your personality type. From understanding how the different brain waves feel and act, the brain waves can be mastered and influenced through training and exercises. Meditation and relaxation techniques, when individually adapted to the specific brain wave patterns of the client, have proven to help achieve the client’s objectives related to consciousness development. Once a client is able to access Theta while being awake, it is possible to use this state for deep transformational work.
During the MMS Coach process, it is important to enter a non-judgmental state and be open to messages and intuition. This means that Beta brainwaves, which create chatter in y our mind and judgments of self and others must be diminished. The flow of energy allows for the brainwaves of the coach to influence the brainwaves of the coachee. The assumption is that the brain waves of coach and coachee influence each other. The coach will remain in a low beta state to be fully present and be non-judgmental.
We observed in one of the coachees, that with every ‘feeling’ question, the Theta, or subconscious flared up. The other coachee had very high delta throughout, indicating she is a very empathic person who is highly sensitive to impressions from the outside environment. There are many more observations and conclusions to be explored, and we could expand on this if there is sufficient interest from MMS CT graduates. We could also co-sponsor an evening for people who want to learn more about MMS Coaching and the impact on Brainwaves and making choices.