Have you tried turning yourself off and on again?

If a bit of tech plays up, what do you do?

Assuming mucking around with the settings doesn’t fix it, the next step is clear:

You turn it off and on again.

It’s amazing how often this works. I’m not an expert in technology, but it suggests to me many tech problems come in the same pattern.

Some process misbehaves.

It either changes something it shouldn’t or it keeps going when it should stop.

Turning it off stops that process.

Turning it on again gets everything running as it should.

Maybe I’m misinterpreting what really happens in this situations. But what really tickles my fancy about this idea is how well it applies to humans.

We run a process – some thought, behaviour, habit or belief – that works well in one situation.

Then we apply that process to where it doesn’t belong.

For example, phobias. Fear is a wonderful response to danger – it, more than anything else, will keep you alive and safe. But when you run that process on something harmless, it leads to problems.

Or we run that thought in a loop, long after it should have ended.

For example, it’s common (although not great) to get angry when someone cuts you off in traffic. That anger is generally useful – when someone crosses the line, anger helps you re-establish boundaries.

But anger isn’t useful in this situation – there’s nothing you can do about it. Flipping them off won’t change their behaviour in the future.

(So this is like the first example – running a process where it doesn’t belong.)

But even if you disagree with me and think anger is useful here…

What’s not useful is fixating on it.

If the bad driver did their bad driving on your morning commute, there’s no point thinking about it over your coffee break.

Let alone for the rest of the day.

Or even longer.

The “useful” process never completed – which, by the way, is common with abstract anger. It’s hard to get resolution against “that other driver, whoever they are”. Or “the economy”, “society”, “the wrong political party” or any nameless, faceless entity.

Another reason why road rage doesn’t help you.

With no resolution, the loop doesn’t have the chance to end so, like a program running amok, it chews up computational resources for no reason.

The solution for both of these is the same as with technology:

Turn your conscious mind off and on again.

That’s why a good night’s sleep can help.

But it doesn’t always. Besides, it’s not always practical.

That’s where hypnosis helps.

A deep hypnotic trance can be just like sleeping, only in a fraction of the time and you remember what happens.

A few minutes – or even just a few moments, with practice – can stop these kinds of problematic loops and get your mind back in order.

There’s a reason why I call one of my offer the Neural Reset…

Speaking of, feel free to sign up for one. If you’d like to experience the rare and sublime freedom of shutting down unwanted thoughts, then head on over here:

/appointment

Dreamwork makes the teamwork

Ever been part of a team that just didn’t make it?

I think we’ve all been part of a work team, club, fraternity/sorority or rock band which either fell apart… or just limped along.

The strange thing is it’s not down to the quality of the team members. You could take a group of superstars who all excel on their own and create something dysfunctional.

If you’re smarter about team dynamics, you might think that all-star team might be a little imbalanced. So you find the best leader, the best follower, the best dreamer, the best implementer…

Then you sit them round a table and they still could break down into tears, yelling and dramatic exits.

Even if they like each other.

And it gets even stranger.

Google’s Project Aristotle, when looking into what makes some teams amazing, found it wasn’t down to the people. Two teams could have the same team members, yet have one descend into chaos while the other thrives.

They found it was down to the group norms – the unspoken (and occasionally spoken) rules that govern a team’s behaviour.

The right rules bring folks together.

So you might think the best approach is to sit down and brainstorm a list of guidelines.

Things like “all ideas are welcome” and “be courteous”.

And that’s probably worthwhile.

But while a good idea…

It’s not the best.

Because no matter how long you spend on this, there are always going to be unspoken rules. Heck, there’ll be unspoken rules about which explicit rules to follow and which to ignore.

(“We only added that to shut Alex up. No one really takes that rule seriously…”)

You can’t analyse every unspoken rule – not if you spend a lifetime on it.

But you can process them.

You can, because you do. You instinctively learn when to raise objections and when to bury them.

And when the best time to raise controversial ideas is.

The right topics for small talk and the ones to avoid.

How to dress, eat, work and look like you’re working.

Who the real leader of the team is – it’s rarely the boss and it often changes throughout the day.

And a million other tiny things.

It’s not always perfect – you can still make the occasional faux pas. But it works far better than you could manage consciously.

All of that is going on unconsciously – automatically and outside your awareness.

There are times when your set of unspoken expectations – the rules you think everyone should follow – clash with someone else’s.

If you blindly follow these arbitrary expectations, you’ll find the other person stubborn, ignorant and unreasonable.

(Guess what they think about you?)

But the great thing about having a brain is you don’t have to live with your instincts.

You can change them.

One way to do this?

Set your intention to be a more insightful, flexible and effective team member.

Do this right before you go to bed and see what happens when you wake up. Let the fluidity of your mental state as you wake up be open to what you uncovered.

I’ve made a lot of breakthroughs and great decisions while sleeping. And strangely, when I do this, sometimes I feel more rested than usual. There’s no reason why you can’t use the time too.

Of course, what makes it work for me is hypnosis.

I don’t just “set an intention” – I hypnotically engage my unconscious mind.

If you want to use the power of your dreams, it pays to engage your unconscious. Which you can learn to do right here:

/monster

3 hypnotic ways to learn to love exercise

You might be surprised by how flexible – and programmable – your own preferences are.

You can, for example, learn to love exercise.

Even if you dislike it now.

Even if you hate it.

There are all sorts of behavioural tricks you can try. Things like rewarding yourself after a workout, doing something to psyche you up or having an accountability buddy.

All those, and more, are useful.

You know best how you operate. Maybe penalising yourself with a donation to a cause you hate will work for you. Maybe it’ll make you dig your heels in.

I leave it to you to figure all that out.

But if that all seems more hassle than it’s worth…

And you want to really learn to like it, not keep tricking yourself into doing it…

… that’s where these approaches come in.

You can rework your own preferences so you don’t need to bribe yourself. You genuinely enjoy it.

I know, because I love exercising now. After decades of struggling – and struggling hard – to stick to a routine, now I crave it.

Once a week used to be a burden. Now, I like to exercise three times a day if I have the time.

And you can do the same for yourself, with a little hypnotic work. Here are three broad strategies – the details, which will be personal to you, are for you to fill in.

The first approach is to identify the cause of the resistance and change it.

Do you hate exercise because of the soreness? Rework your mind so you get a runner’s high instead.

Does it make you feel unfit, uncoordinated and uninspired? Train your brain to feel pride at your progress, not your performance.

The second approach is to rewire your associations.

If the thought of working out makes your stomach feel heavy, flip it so it fills your body with light.

Instead of feeling tired before you begin, find how you can feel pumped instead.

 

The third approach?

Set your intention, drop into a deep, deep trance and let your unconscious figure it out.

You might not even know what the problem was.

Or how you fixed it.

Only that, suddenly, it’s so much easier to don your workout gear and hit the gym.

That’s the strangest way to do it. And, in some ways, it’s the toughest – because it requires such immense trust towards your own unconscious.

And a deep relationship there.

That doesn’t come naturally – it takes work.

Once you get there, though?

It might be as simple as thinking about what (or who) you want to be…

Then you wake up like that.

Of course, before you can do any of this, you have to learn how to hypnotise yourself.

Luckily, there’s a fun and complete pathway before you. To begin your journey that ends beyond this level of self-mastery, simply follow this link:

/monster

The only time you can think

Sometimes, we have a notion that doesn’t hold up.

If we reflect on it, we see it doesn’t make sense.

Even so, the thought slips in.

One such thought comes in many forms but the crux of it is this:

After some disaster or misstep, you think to yourself, “if I were smarter, I would have solved that problem.”

Maybe so.

Then again, maybe not.

The wishful thinking is, if only you had more raw brainpower – then you could have figured out the solution.

I’m not saying intelligence isn’t useful…

But it doesn’t help you in the moment.

In the moment, you don’t think. You can’t. You don’t have the time or the attention. Instead, you react.

On a tennis court, you can’t think about where the ball is or how to hit it.

When driving a car, you can’t think about the thousand little things to pay attention to.

All you can do is follow your programming.

The good thing about your program – whether you call those your training, your instincts or System 1 – is how quick it is.

Fast enough to respond to the world in real time.

Real thinking takes time – especially deep, thorough thinking.

When you hear things like this – or that research showing you make decisions before you’re even conscious of the choices – you might give up. That means consciousness is an illusion and you’re doomed to follow your programming.

But that’s not the lesson.

The real lesson is this:

Sure, you don’t have time to think when you need to act.

But afterwards, when you’re free to reflect on it all?

And beforehand, when you’re training for the future?

That’s when you have time to think.

And those thoughts are what drive your System 1 instincts to respond the way they do.

The more you think and the better you think, the better you react to things as they happen.

No amount of intellect makes up for a prepared mind.

So prepare it.

Focus on things that are useful to your life – things that’ll enrich your relationships, satisfaction levels and career.

And focus on the mental fundamentals – the very building blocks of thought, decision, emotion and reason.

Sharpen these and it gives your brain something real to work with for your next crisis.

There are plenty of ways to train your brain – and some of them even work.

Throw out those cutesy games on your phone.

Socialise, exercise and be creative. That’ll do more for your mind than 95% of those fun little toy apps.

If you want to take it further, though?

I blend ancient meditation, cutting edge neuroscience and a whole lot in between into this, the finest way to train your mind:

/monster

A worthless purchase, a priceless lesson

I don’t know if this is still a thing. Maybe they cracked down on it recently.

But I remember hearing a few variations of this story over the years.

On buy/sell/swap sites, someone would run this rather uninspired scam:

They’d wait for a product with a lot of hype around it. Like a next-gen gaming console or the next iPhone.

Then, a week before it launches, they put up a picture of the product for sale – probably as an auction.

Not the product itself – just a picture.

And not even an unusual picture, simply something printed off the product’s website.

Then some poor sap pays hundreds of dollars (or more) for this worthless scrap of paper.

Assuming the victim of this scam can’t easily refund the purchase, it’s a reliable (if awful) source of cash. Assuming you don’t care about reputation, self-respect or karma, at least. The odds of someone specific falling for it are low but, given enough numbers, somebody will.

How do they fall for it?

By not paying attention.

They skim the offer, seeing only what they want to see and not the huge red flags.

It’s easy to overlook the obvious sometimes.

But, as easy as it is, it’s never free.

You might not have fallen for this particular ruse, but reality is always trying to sneak something past you.

The world teems with threats and opportunities. With unlimited powers of perception, you would be safe and rich no matter what happens.

“Unlimited” might be a smidge too high for us mere mortals to achieve.

But you can always improve what you notice… and change what happens in your life.

You can begin that right here:

/monster

Hypnosis and meditation for “left-brained” folks

One of the perks of having a solid web presence and decent SEO is strangers from all over the world find your website. “Of course”, you might think, “that’s the whole point of running a business online”.

That’s true… but that’s not what I’m talking about right now.

It’s cool because you get to see what people are thinking. Although most search terms used to find you are encrypted, plenty aren’t. So I know many people find me with a couple of questions in mind:

What’s the neuroscience behind hypnosis and meditation?

And how do you enter a trance – hypnotic, meditative or otherwise – if you’re a left-brained person?

As always, I’m eager to show off my knowledge, so let’s talk about that.

Firstly, let’s talk about what ‘being left-brained’ means. The left hemisphere of the brain tends to process information differently than the right.

The left specialises in logic, details and planning.

The right is better at abstract reasoning, experiences and joining the dots.

Now, in practice, there’s not much difference between the two halves of the brain. While not identical, they’re more similar than this idea suggests.

And any complex mental task – say, analysis or creative thinking – uses your whole brain. So people aren’t left-brained… unless they’ve had the right hemisphere surgically removed.

But I know that’s not what you mean.

So-called left-brained people are highly analytical. They struggle to admire a sunset without thinking about what they’re going to do next. Or judging themselves for how they’re admiring the sunset (“am I experiencing this qualia right?”).

Sound familiar?

If so, you’ve probably experimented with meditation and struggled with it. Analytical people see the potential benefits of the practice, but often find it hard to switch off that voice inside.

It’s hard to meditate while part of you is assessing your performance and wondering if you’re in a trance yet.

You have two options:

Learn to quiet your mind, including the part that tells you that you need to quiet your mind.

The benefits are enormous, but I won’t pretend it’s easy.

Or…

Have you ever seen a hypnotherapist guiding someone into trance? There are dozens of ways to hypnotise someone but – especially with hypnotherapy – it often involves talking to the person.

Sometimes without stopping.

Which might spark an idea: what if you trained your inner dialogue to be your hypnotherapist?

Instead of quieting your mind, you could simply listen.

The more it speaks, the more it guides you into trance.

Wouldn’t that be something?

I use both meditation and hypnosis every day… but it’s reasons like this that make me love hypnosis more.

Instead of working against your mind’s nature, it works with it.

If you’re interested, you have a few options on how to proceed. The best, in my biased opinion, is to learn self-hypnosis – ideally from a program that assumes you know nothing and then goes deep.

In other words, you’ll never get stuck and you’ll always know what to do.

It’s a brilliant program, but you don’t need to trust me on that. Read the wicked testimonials on the page below and decide for yourself.

Here’s the link:

/monster

Mindlessly find your life’s purpose

Feel like you could do more with your life?

Then it’s time to do some hard thinking.

To sit down with a pen in hand, writing out everything you should do with your life. Career, relationships, money, hobbies – think about and write out clear goals you should meet before you die.

Then again…

Maybe that’s a horrible, demoralising plan that sets you up for failure.

Best case scenario:

You feel inspired for a few days. Maybe even a few months. Then your plans seem like nothing but hard work and shallow rewards.

Even if you achieve your goals, you feel empty afterwards. So you either set new goals that’ll disappoint you… or you settle.

You might even start to think you’re incapable of happiness. After all, look at your life. You worked hard, checked all the boxes… only to still feel empty and unfulfilled.

Trust me, you’re capable of happiness.

You just made a simple, understandable mistake at the start of all this:

You tried to think your way to the answer.

There’s a common factoid about the brain that says you can only hold five to nine things in your awareness at once.

Maybe you agree with that, maybe think that’s conservative. So let me be generous and let’s say, for argument’s sake, you can hold 30 things in your awareness at once.

Even with this boost to your abilities…

… you really think you can predict the future with so few variables?

Even a simple binary decision – like will Job A or Job B make me happier – has thousands of factors in it.

Your conscious mind can’t hold on to all of that. It’s great at many things, but not handling something with so many moving parts.

The answer?

Forget about involving your awareness. It can’t make the decision here – not with any real hope of success.

You need to make the decision without thinking about it – not consciously, anyway.

Because your unconscious can handle the variables. It processes billions of chunks of data, all the time – even when you sleep. It’s what directs your attention to loud noises, regulates your body and runs your emotions.

It’s not magical. If you expect it to know the best choice with certainty – or to predict, say, lotto numbers – then you’re out of luck.

But it’s the best tool you have for making complex and difficult decisions.

Then again… if it’s unconscious, then how do you access it? Surely by definition you can’t…

Not so, my clever pendo.

That’s what hypnosis is all about.

Your unconscious has many answers and wants to share them. But there’s a divide between your awareness and your unconscious – the same divide that keeps you from controlling your own heartbeat or being overwhelmed by every sensation in your body.

Hypnosis bridges this gap.

In time, you could learn to consciously slow your heart. That’s way more advanced than you need for this, though.

In a hypnotic trance, explore how you should really be spending your time.

With practice (or maybe even without it), the answers will come – so clear and obvious you won’t be able to deny it.

You could keep your true purpose in the back of your mind while you experience the Neural Reset.

If you’re after clarity, then let me know before going in and I guarantee you’ll have more on the other side.

If you’ve ever had an epiphany, it’s been because you crossed the gap between your unconscious and conscious. Hypnosis like this is a fantastic way to earn an epiphany. Whether or not you have one, you’ll see the challenge of your life in a new light.

If that interests you, then sign up here:

/appointment

Meditate for negative-30 minutes a day

Before I get into the meat of this, there’s an obvious disclaimer I need to make:

When you’re out and about, pay attention to what’s going on. Streets have fast-moving metal things that can give you owies.

I’m not patronising you here. Once, by (mis)using this, I almost stepped out in front of a cyclist. That was an excellent learning experience for me, followed by the strange one of him saying:

“Hey, watch it! I almost hit you… but I didn’t, so there’s no need for me to get upset.”

My point: it’s easy to lose yourself in this experience.

And what experience is that?

Well, a couple of days ago I entered a self-hypnotic trance while I was walking home from the shops.

Think you don’t have time to meditate, practice self-hypnosis or sharpen your mind?

The typical rebuttal is it’ll say you time in the long-run. Thirty minutes in the morning will enhance your productivity and focus for the rest of the day.

But if you struggle to find the time to even do that?

Why not meditate while doing other stuff?

Now, there are plenty of tricks out there for how to drive, cook and have conversations mindfully.

And mindfulness is a key part of meditation…

But it’s not the only part.

Mindfully dicing veggies misses the experience of where you go so deep in your own mind, you lose yourself in a vast, mental void – free of problems and attachments.

It’s hard enough to reach that state while sitting still with your eyes closed.

At least, if you learn meditation the traditional way…

My approach?

I practice both meditation and self-hypnosis. There are important differences, but the important details are the same. They draw you into a similar state of focus and enhanced awareness, although self-hypnosis is generally easier to enter.

And you can go deeper.

Going deep in meditation takes years of practice – ideally full-time in a monastery.

I reached monk-like levels of trance after a year or two by mucking around with self-hypnosis.

But the really cool thing with self-hypnosis?

You can set up triggers for it.

Think of a stage hypnotist: “when I snap my fingers, you will cluck like a chicken!”

Only it’s less ridiculous and more useful than that.

When you touch your own earlobe, you will enter a deep meditative state.

It’s a handy trick to know.

Especially because, with practice, you can do it anywhere, anytime.

Do this and meditation will take no time – because you’re already using that time for something else.

In fact, with practice, you’ll end up doing the task faster.

Now I truly can say you don’t have the time to not learn this stuff.

But that raises the question of how.

You could find a great self-hypnosis guide, muck around for years and try to merge the two disciplines together.

Or you could skip all that and learn my approach. With enough dedication, you can go from never having meditated to meditating with negative time in less than a year.

If that’s still too much time, I wish you luck learning this any other way.

For anyone willing to work for real results, here’s the link:

/monster

Use it or lose yourself

Many folks, myself included, had this problem a few months ago.

Now, thanks to the lockdown, it’s probably worse.

This isn’t something folks talk about much. Sure, it comes up here or there – but, honestly, I see this as a major challenge.

And the source of a lot of our misery.

Since it deserves more attention, here’s me doing my bit towards it.

So let’s talk about unspent energy.

To see what I mean, imagine you’re bursting with energy. It’s like you’ve drank your weight in caffeine except, instead of getting all twitchy, you’re able to focus.

You just want to go for a run.

Or maybe write 5000 words.

Instead…

You go to bed and bingewatch something.

When you’re tired, there’s nothing nicer than slipping between the sheets and letting yourself rest. But when you’re bouncing? It’s hard to stay still, as if your legs will move even if you don’t want them to.

Okay, that sounds unpleasant.

But it’s hardly the worst torture in the world.

Until you do it the next day as well.

Then the day after that.

After a while, that twitchiness and restless grows stronger. It starts to feel like the energy is eating you alive.

Then the energy will start coming out in other, unhealthy ways. It’ll either disappear, leaving you feeling strangely tired. Or you’ll start to act out in strange ways, like lashing out at your loved ones.

Probably both, to be honest.

Now think about other types of energy you can have, besides physical.

You can have the desire to work hard on meaningful projects – but, to pay the bills, you do dull, tedious work that doesn’t amount to anything. Apart from enriching your bosses, of course. Someone in this situation can lash out in strange ways. You’ve seen (and probably even experienced) it for yourself.

It can start out with craving distractions – like junk food, video games or worse.

Then it can start to tear you apart, physically and mentally.

I’m not saying this is the only problem an unfulfilling job causes. And I’m not saying spending an hour a day on some other, meaningful project will fix everything.

But it can.

Oh, boy, can it.

(Why do you think I started writing?)

Speaking of, creative energy is another thing that needs an outlet. City simulators, Minecraft and whatnot are all so popular because they give folks a way to release pent-up creative frustration. If everyone were writing a book – something they were deeply passionate about – these games would be much less popular.

And, of course, there’s the energy around sexuality. I won’t go into the ways a person can go wrong when that’s not being expressed.

You might have dozens of sources of energy like this.

Some days, you get up to make a difference

Others, because you enjoy spending time with people.

Others still, it’s all about the paycheque – which you funnel into worthy causes close to your heart.

The list goes on.

And it’s an important list because any of these energies – improperly managed or expressed  – can cause all sorts of problems.

Invisibly wearing at the foundations of your psyche, until things start to collapse.

If I were to give you just one mission for this month, it’s this:

Figure out ways your energies are being stifled.

Then figure out healthy ways to channel and express them.

And you know what’s useful for both those steps?

Focus, mental clarity and action.

All of which are enhanced by the right sort of mind training. Monster Mind Edukaré is an excellent outlet and source of more energy than you realise is possible.

If you’re feeling stuck, unfulfilled, restless or like you’re crawling the walls, then check this out:

/monster

Don’t trust mind tech marketing

Yesterday, I came across a Kickstarter campaign that made me laugh for a good minute or two.

I don’t want to say the name, because I don’t know if their product works or not – odds are against it, but nothing’s impossible.

If it’s bogus, I don’t want to drive traffic their way.

And if it’s legit, I don’t want to turn folks off by mocking them.

So I’ll just play it safe and keep it anonymous.

Anyway, the product is a goofy headset that reads your brainwaves, talks to your smartphone and supposedly trains your brain.

Sure, maybe.

But what really got me chuckling was their marketing.

Especially a table where they compare their product to other forms of mind training, like meditation and hypnosis.

They had a lot in common, but there were a few ways this fancy bit of kit supposedly outperforms the rest:

… it’s QUICKER. Which is to say, it takes ten minutes or so to use this device.

Well, that’s good to know. But if it takes ten minutes, it’s as fast as meditation and much slower than self-hypnosis. Heck, I did some deep mind training while walking back from the shops today, so it took exactly zero time.

But that was a cute try anyway.

What’s next?

… it has VISUAL FEEDBACK. I’ll admit, that’s something self-hypnosis lacks… and might have been useful while starting out. Pretty quickly, I started getting clear feedback from my own mind, so I didn’t need external, maybe-even-accurate squiggles in an app.

In my experience, an obsession with metrics will help you get started but work against you before long. Once numbers become your goal, the quality of the experience fades away. I’m sure the tech claims the numbers accurately reflect the qualia of it all, but we don’t even know what ‘creativity’ on a neurological level even means, let alone how to properly gauge it.

So not useless, but not worth the yoke it puts on your shoulders.

And finally?

… it’s REAL MIND TRAINING.

Naww, how adorable.

If meditation and self-hypnosis – which are proven ways to improve everything from your raw intelligence to your physical health – aren’t ‘real mind training’, then I’m not sure I even want it.

I’ll just stick with the fake stuff that, you know, has millennia of proven effectiveness behind them.

I don’t know if their product does anything. Honestly, I hope it does – how revolutionary would that be? But if your starting point is meditation ‘doesn’t work’ or ‘isn’t real mind training’, then I doubt you’re qualified to build something like this.

Anyway, that’s more than enough criticism.

Especially because they could turn around and accuse me of being low-tech.

The only sensors I need are the ones I was born with… plus a webcam to bridge the distance.

But the way I see it, clever low-tech beats unproven and well-hyped widgets. We’ve all bled on the cutting edge before. The only way to separate the revolutionary from the dead ends is time.

So go with the mind training that’s survived the ruthless filter of history.

With this program, there’s no skill level too low or too high. It starts well before what others call the basics, building to mind training that will never, ever stop pushing you to grow.

And you can get it here, with no delays and no shipping:

/monster

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