Why a page about improve brain memory information on a counseling website?
When I start to work with my domestic violence or anger management clients, for example, especially the men, I want to give them something to do, and something that they will be successful doing, with objective measures, that they can see on a computer screen, so they can say to themselves, wow, I guess I can learn this counseling stuff better than I thought.
And if that process improves brain fitness and memory skills and attentional skills at the same time, I say we go for it.
There is good news on the tool front also, with a number of computer based programs that I can use with clients that help them get past the initial discomfort they may have in counseling and into the successfull pattern of accomplishment.
The tool that has the best research behind it at this moment is the Posit Science Brain Fitness Program which was the tool studied in the IMPACT study published in April of 2009.
Both the researchers and the participants were amazed at the results.
After age 30, the brain gradually begins to take in less information from the senses. And what it takes in tends to be "noisier," making it harder to remember accurately.
So I ask the men in my programs to begin training with one of the computerized brain fitness programs that I have used or the Heartmath heart rate variability biofeedback program, so they get an experience of increasing control over a process, like memory or attention or time between heart beats, and as they see the positive growth in terms of their scores, I encourage them to transfer this new found confidence to other areas of their lives, like their cognitions, emotions, and relationships.
So there you have the rationale for improve brain memory information on a counseling site.
The top two for utility are Lumosity, which is a web based game, with a two week free trial, and a monthly subscription fee.
So a subscriber could practice frequently in short bursts and the number of games that Lumosity offers is increasing all the time.
I like to start a session with a quick practice, and then end a session with a quick practice. Almost always, clients show an improvement, which reinforces their work in the session. Clients can access the Lumosity platform from any computer at any time.
Although I do have clients that don't have computers, the learning in my office reinforces the concept of brain memory improvement.
The next program with incredible utility in the attention and memory category in Mind Sparke Brain Fitness Pro, which is based on the dual n back task, and folks can get addicted to it. It is fun, frustrating, and increases IQ. While I have not tested IQ with it, with practice the challenge level increases, which is a key component to learning, as is an appropriate amount of successful feedback, and clients can see their improvement. This particular brain improvement tool will teach you how fast your attention drifts away from the task at hand, and attention is a key piece of getting information into working memory and from there to long term memory.
And most folks marvel at how they get better at this task.
The Posit Science Brain Fitness Program is the brain memory improve tool most researched. The IMPACT study published in April of 2009 took a look at the results of 500 or so Seniors who worked through the 40 one hour sessions required in this program, and the results were amazing to both the participants and the researchers.
This program has the most robust results, and requires the most time and discipline to work though.
The Posit Science program is based on the research of Michael Merzenich, Ph.D., one of the world's leading experts on neuroplasticity, which means he studies how neurons form new connections when we offer our brain a novel learning experience. Those new connections are the essence of memory.
Merzenich is one of the names that you hear most frequently in conversations about brain fitness.
For a primer on what brain fitness is about and how it impacts brain memory improvement, read Brainfit for Life by Simon Evans,Ph.D., and Paul Burghardt,Ph.D. One of the nice things about their book is that they leave the jargon in the lab. The book is written for those of us who are not neuroscientists.
I mentioned another program above called Heartmath, which is a computerized heart rate variability biofeedback program. I have used Heartmath personally and professionally with anger management clients since 2001.
Heartmath is based on discoveries from another newly discovered field of science called neurocardiology, which is the study of the heart's own nervous system.
Yes, the heart has its own nervous system, a brain of its own, which can learn and make decisions independently of any other brain I have. In fact, the heart sends a huge amount of data up about emotions, more than the brain sends down, so when I learn to manage the time between heart beats, my entire body begins to beat on that rhythm, if you will, and the feeling I have is one of quiet contentment. That coherent heart beat actually opens the higher perceptual centers in the brain for brain memory improvement.
Once learned, and seldom does it take more than 10 sessions to learn, a client has the ability to manage the internal chemistry of the body heart beat by heart beat, which has huge implications for memory.
Want to try it out? Click the Heartmath link in the right side bar for a wonderful brain memory improvement tool.
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Very early in my personal growth experience, a wise person taught me to use the phrase "gratitude is the attitude" when I was resentful or afraid and that phrase has helped me feel better tens of thousands of times.
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