When you decide to give a family member a boost from neurofeedback—whether it’s to help with school performance or with too much stress—you will enhance effectiveness for them by training yourself too!
1. Two is better than one! A family is similar to pack animals where betas follow the alpha. When an “alpha” member (hopefully you read: parent) trains it helps the “beta” child and boosts the effectiveness of their training. Why? Think of tuning forks that are close together. They will resonate at the same pitch. Mom and Dad’s nervous systems are a powerful ‘tuning fork’ for kids. If the parents are less stressed —that calm, focused, playful ‘pitch’—it is much easier for the child to resonate at that pitch.
2. Create a training schedule for family members. The most common feedback I hear when families return a rental machine is “I loved it. I just wish we had trained more!” Like anything we want to accomplish in our busy lives: if it’s not on the schedule it won’t happen. Make it a realistic time when you can count on 45 minutes of free time. And make sure that all family members training are on a schedule too!
3. Make training a reward. Bill, a successful entrepreneur, who rented a home neurofeedback system, never missed a session. He told himself that during his training time he didn’t have to accomplish anything else. It became the two times during the week when he truly let himself relax. A gift to his go-getter mind! With neurofeedback for kids, you can let them play with a device (on silent) or read a favorite graphic novel while the neurofeedback session is running.
4. Listen to your body and get sleep. After ten sessions a client said to me, “Natalie, since starting I’m noticing how exhausted my body is. All I want to do is sleep!” This observation is common and some people try to push through it and maintain their 6 hours of sleep a night, while others yield and get more rest. Remember: research shows a main purpose of sleep is to give the brain time to remove toxins that have built up throughout the day. Your brain is asking for what it needs to optimize it’s functioning. Please listen!
5. Get the toxins out of your life and replace them with nutrients. The brain is only as effective as the building blocks it has to build and repair its roads and highways. One main toxin in our lives is sugar. The vitamin we’re often depleted in is Vitamin D—essential for our cheerful disposition. A trained brain becomes a better communicator of its needs. Pay attention you may have thoughts like: maybe I should do that cleanse I was thinking about. Or I should get a physical and check on my vitamin levels. A great place to start is on Dr. Hymen’s website.
Written by Natalie Baker, LMHC, Psychotherapist and Advanced Neurofeedback trainer