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- Ariel Garden worked in an early brain computer interface lab with Dr. Steve Man, who was one of the fathers of wearable computing.
- In this lab they had a simple platform where a single electrode would be placed on the back of the head, and by shifting your brain state, would allow the device to make sound.
- Meditation is a practice and training that leads to healthy and positive mind states.
- Meditation is the active sitting and training of your brain, while mindfulness is the skill that develops as a result of it.
- When you meditate, sitting and focusing on you breath, you are training yourself to be in the present moment, and to be mindful, which is the awareness of your thoughts, feelings, and sensations intentionally and non judgmentally in the present moment.
- There are over a 1000 published studies looking at the benefits of meditation to improve your focus, to help you sleep more effectively, to change your pain tolerance, to help reduce aging of your brain and body, improve relationships, your emotional self regulation, and your level of stress, to just name of few.
- Muse Headbands gives you real time feedback on your meditation, letting you know what goes on in your mind during meditation, and guides you to states of focused attention.
- It is built on a simple focused attention on the breath practice, which involves focusing on your breath, and when your mind wanders, and you notice it wanders, you return it to focusing on your breath.
- Muse give you real time feedback to let you know when you’re focused and when your mind wanders, and then provides data in the form of charts, scores, and graphs so you can see what your brain was doing moment to moment, and also provides you with an motivational architecture that you can use to keep yourself meditating
- People who use Muse 10 to 20 minutes a day have seen great improvements in brain, body, and relaxation, as well as cognitive improvements.
- Our prefrontal cortex, the attentional control center of our brain, can thin during aging, but if you’re able to maintain a long-term meditation regiment, you can maintain its thickness.
- You can down regulate the activity of the amygdala, the part of your brain that triggers the fight or flight response, by maintaining meditation, which reduces stress in people who have anxiety.
- Muse 1 headband, launched in 2014, gives you realtime feedback on your brain, while Muse 2 headband, launched in 2018, gives you real time feedback on your brain and your body in your breath, your heart, and your movement.
- For anyone who doesn’t have experience in meditation, Muse can walk you through exactly what to do.
- Muse will instantly lets you know when your mind wanders through sound response, so you can bring your focus instantly back to your breath.
- The muse headband has EEG sensors along the forehead and behind the ear to track the brain activity.
- Muse has a dashboard for clinicians that allows them to track their patients’ progress so they can see their scores, see when they’re meditating, and see when they’re not meditating.
- To learn more about Muse and purchase a Muse Headband go to choosemuse.com
Wendy Myers: Hello, everyone. Welcome to the Myers Detox Podcast. My name is Wendy Myers and today we’re going to be talking about meditation and the technology that you can use to upgrade your meditation and dramatically increase the results as long as you’re taking the time to do meditation, you might as well get the maximum benefits out of it possible. We’re going to be showing you exactly how you can do that today and also how you can … Let’s say if you’ve tried meditation and you really felt like you haven’t really taken to it or been successful with it, because you feel like you can’t calm down or relax or focus while you’re meditating. We’re going to tell you why that is and what you can do about it.
Wendy Myers: There’s so many benefits to meditation that we’re going to talk about today on the show, but it’s really one of the key things that I’ve used in my life to help control reactivity, to help retrain my brain to not react to really benign stimuli in your environment. Because you can live your live stressed out and hectic and reacting to every little stressor that’s thrown your way or you can deal with those same potential stressors and handle those with grace, handle those with calmness.
Wendy Myers: For me, that’s really an important theme right now because I want to enjoy my work more. I want to have better relationships. I want to feel less stressed in my life and doing meditation and using Muse to improve my meditation has dramatically helped with that. I’m really thrilled to have Ariel Garten on the show today, who is the founder of choosemuse.com and it’s this really nifty little headband the you use with these sensors, like EEG sensors, and you pair this with an app that then helps you to focus your meditation, so when your mind’s wandering, it lets you know that and then you can focus back onto your clearing your mind. Really, really interesting show today, so tune in.
Wendy Myers: I know some of you guys listening to the Myers Detox Podcast are interested in heavy metal detoxification and I created a two-minute quiz that you can take at heavymetalsquiz.com to answer some lifestyle questions to figure out what your potential levels of heavy metals are in your body. Then once you take this quiz, you can get a series of videos that teaches you some solutions and things that you can do to help with removing these heavy metals from you body.
Wendy Myers: I assure you, everyone has heavy metals in their body. Metals in the air, food and water, no matter how well you eat organic, no matter how well you take care of yourself, high end supplements that you take, everyone has heavy metals in their body. The question is what do you have and how much of it do you have in you, and then what do you then need to do to remove these?
Wendy Myers: Because metals are very deeply embedded in our tissues. They’re not so easy to remove, so that’s why I focused on heavy metal detoxification. Removing metals like mercury, thallium and the other metals that I had have dramatically improved my health, improved my mental clarity, got rid of my fatigue, got rid of my depression, anxiety solely by detoxing these metals. That’s what I want for you to bring awareness to you about heavy metals and teach you how to remove them. One of the steps is finding out what your metals are. Take the quiz at heavymetalsquiz.com.
Wendy Myers: Our guest today, Ariel Garten, is the co-founder of muse and it’s this little meditation device right here, this headband. It’s so cool and as an expression of her background in neuroscience, psychotherapy and art, along with her dedication to bring easy to use and accessible tools for wellbeing to the masses. That’s why she founded this company. Ariel is also the co-host of Untangle Podcast, where she interviews groundbreaking neuroscientists, psychologists and meditators to teach listeners about the brain, how it works and how to use it to its full potential.
Wendy Myers: Ariel studied neuroscience at the University of Toronto and worked in labs at the Krembil Neuroscience Center, researching Parkinson’s disease and hippocampal neurogenesis. Post graduation, she trained as a psychotherapist and had her own private practice as well as designed a clothing line that opened Toronto Fashion Week and has been sold across North America.
Wendy Myers: It was also her desire to understand the self from both scientific and artistic perspectives that lead her to work with BCI Technology in the lab of Dr. Steve Mann. There, she recognized the opportunity to commercialize technology that would fundamentally disrupt multiple markets and soon co-founded InteraXon, makers of Muse.
Wendy Myers: The company debuted with the creation of Bright Ideas on Ontario’s feature showcase at the 2010 Winter Olympics, where visitors and Vancouver controlled the lights on the CN Tower, Niagara Falls and the Canadian Canadian Parliament buildings with their minds from across the country.
Wendy Myers: Ariel and the Muse headband have been featured in global media, including CNBC, CNET, CNN, Forbes, Popular Science, TechCrunch, the Wall Street Journal, and VentureBeat, which credited Ariel for creating the most important wearable for 2014. In addition to her full time position at Muse, Ariel keynotes around the world on technology, mindfulness and entrepreneurialship and supports and advises a variety of startups. You can learn more about her company at choosemuse.com. Ariel, thanks so much for coming on the show.
Ariel Garten: My sincere pleasure. I’m happy to be here.
Wendy Myers: Tell us a little bit about your background and your journey that led you to developing Muse.
Ariel Garten: My own background is kind of interesting. I started as a artist and a neuroscientist. I was really fascinated by the brain and how it allowed us to process the world, allowed us to experience really everything in our lives and created the personality that is us. I was working in an early brain computer interface lab in the early 2000s with Dr. Steve Mann. He’s one of the fathers of wearable computing and we had this very simple platform that allowed you to put a single electrode on the back of your head and by shifting your brain state, focusing and relaxing, it allowed you to create sound.
Ariel Garten: I stood back and said like, “Oh my God. We’re literally controlling the world with our mind. We’re hearing what’s going on inside of our brains and we have to be able to do something with this.” Along the way, I was also trained as a psychotherapist. I spent almost a decade in private practice and I was really working with the brain and meditation from multiple angles.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, and so let’s talk a little bit about Muse, but first let’s talk about meditation. What is meditation exactly and how can people benefit from that and why should they be doing it?
Ariel Garten: Lots of people think that meditation is this weird woo woo thing. They’re just supposed to sit there and let your mind go blank and then magic will happen.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, it’s hard for people to do that.
Ariel Garten: Yeah. It’s a very hard thing to do. There’s lots of different forms of meditation, because typically the core meditation is a practice or training that leads to healthy and positive mind states. It’s not a weird and woo woo thing. It’s a practice or a training. There are various different forms of meditation like focused attention or zen or walking meditation and many of them train the skill of mindfulness. Some people have heard of the term mindfulness. It’s sometimes confused with meditation. Meditation is the act of sitting and training your brain and then mindfulness is the skill that develops as a result of it. When you sit on the mat and you focus on your breath, what you’re doing is you’re training yourself to be in the present moment and to be mindful. Mindfulness is awareness of your thoughts, feelings, sensations, intentionally and nonjudgementally in the present moment. When you then go out into the world, you are very mindful of the world around. You’re mindful of your thoughts, your feelings, your sensations. You’re in the present moment. You’re not in the past. You’re not in the future and you’re really connected to yourself and the world around you.
Wendy Myers: Yes, and so what are some of the benefits that people will experience from embarking on a practice of meditation on a regular basis?
Ariel Garten: Though the practice is incredibly simple, the benefits can be really, really significant. There’s over 1,000 published studies looking at the benefits of meditation to improve your focus, to help you sleep more effectively, to change your pain tolerance, to help reduce the aging of your brain and body potentially, to help you improve your GRE scores, your relationships, your emotional self regulation, your level of stress. This very simple activity actually rolls out in literally hundreds and hundreds of positive ways in your life.
Wendy Myers: I really, really enjoy using Muse. You guys sent me one here. You guys sent me this headband and it’s really interesting how it works. You put it on your head like this and it’s really helped me to take my meditation practice that I’ve really done for years to the next level. Even if you’ve been doing it for a long time, you can still have periods where you’re stressed and you’re not really focusing very well, not able to focus your thoughts. I feel like with my brain, I feel like I have a lot of brain activity going on, lots of things that my mind is tracking and it can be challenging for me kind of just relax and focus and take everything out of my mind.
Wendy Myers: But with the Muse, you have it connected to an app and when your mind starts to wander, you start hearing a harder rain or storminess, if you will. And then you hear relative calm when you’re able to focus, bring your focus back. It kind of almost gives you something to do. It takes the boringness out of meditation. Can you tell us a little bit more about how it works?
Ariel Garten: Sure, so Muse gives you real time feedback on your meditation, so most of us know we’re supposed to meditate but you’re not really sure what to do. So Muse actually lets you know what goes on in your mind during meditation and guides you to states of focused attention. It’s built on a simple focused attention on the breath practice. So with focused attention on the breath, you focus on your breath, your mind wanders. You notice it wanders and then you return it. That simple act of noticing that your mind has wandering and returning, that’s the core of the meditation. That’s the attentional, that’s the exercise that you’re doing there.
Ariel Garten: What Muse does is it gives you real time feedback to know when you’re focused and know when your mind is wandering. The metaphor that we use is your mind is like the weather. You’re thinking, distracted. You actually hear it as stormy and as you bring yourself to quiet focused attention, you quite the storm. So Muse, in real time, lets you know what’s going on in your brain while you meditate and then after the fact, it gives you data, charts, scores, graphs, things that really let you know what your brain was doing moment to moment and it gives you a motivational architecture that you can then use to keep yourself meditating. Because meditation is super, super awesome, but only if you actually do it regularly.
Wendy Myers: Yes, yes, and so how often should people be meditating?
Ariel Garten: So we’ve had a number of studies done with Muse looking at 10 minutes a day or 20 minutes a day of meditation and we’re able to see impact with both of those time scales. One study came from Baycrest Hospital and they looked at average individuals using Muse for six weeks and after six weeks of use for 10 minutes per day, they saw improvements in brain, body and relaxation as well as potentially cognitive function improvement. They looked at the Stroop Task and they actually saw a significant improvement in your reaction times on a Stroop Task. So 10 minutes a day is not a bad place to start.
Wendy Myers: Okay, great, yeah, and anyone can fit that into their schedule. A lot of people know they need to meditate. They know that it provides a lot of benefits. It can provide you with almost like two hours of sleep, the equivalent of that, if you do it for 20 minutes a day. It’s really, really important for some people that are sleep deprived today. It’s something that everyone can fit into their schedule. It’s no excuse. There are no excuses. Tell us also what happens to the brain when we’re meditating. Can you tell us a little bit about that?
Ariel Garten: There’s some really cool studied that actually look at the brains of meditators and non-meditators. One of these studies comes out of Dr. Sara Lazar’s lab at Harvard and she had long term meditators go into a MRI machine. Our prefrontal cortex, which is the area of our brain right at the front here is the attentional control center of our brain. It’s the thing that makes us human. It’s our higher order processing. It’s what separates us from other mammals.
Ariel Garten: Bad news, as you age, your prefrontal cortex actually thins. Good news, if you’re able to maintain a long term meditation practice, you can maintain the thickness of your prefrontal cortex even into aging. In her study, she had a 50 year old meditator who had the prefrontal thickness of a 23 to 25 year old. Whoa.
Ariel Garten: Meditation’s also been shown to down regulate the amygdala. The amygdala is the fight or flight part of the brain. When you’re looking around and suddenly identifying danger in your environment, that’s your amygdala. Way back in the day, when we existed in a world of fires around us and wild animals and we didn’t have houses, we didn’t have appropriate houses and shelter and we were just primordial man, it really made sense to be scanning for danger all the time.
Ariel Garten: These days, we don’t have those sorts of dangers and we’ve instead trained that part of our brain to look for dangers and frightening things like people who might not like us or stains in our pants or our dry cleaning that might be late, things that really aren’t problematic, yet it’s still firing very loudly. With meditation, what you can do is start to down regulate the activity of the amygdala, so it’s not responding as strongly and you can find more calm and peace in your life.
Ariel Garten: There’s kind of this relationship between the prefrontal cortex, your attentional control center and the amygdala. It’s kind of like the amygdala is the kid who’s having the temper tantrum and the prefrontal cortex is able to step in and say, “Hey, amygdala, calm down. It’s okay. Everything’s all right.”
Ariel Garten: As you train with meditation, what you’re training your prefrontal cortex to do is to be able to have metacognition rise above the reaction of the amygdala, be able to look at and say, “It’s okay, honey. We can calm down.”
Wendy Myers: Yeah, and some people, they’re amygdala’s just really on high alert, when people have stress in their life from age three to five or they have abuse or something going on, parents fighting a lot, their amygdala is trained to be on a higher alert than someone who didn’t grow up in that environment. I think that population really that’s focusing maybe on more negative things in their environment or have a more sensitive stress response can really benefit so much from meditation.
Ariel Garten: Yes, so both individuals who … We all have levels of stress that we don’t recognize in our lives. We’re all responding to things in the world that we consider scary that are actually really safe. We can all really benefit, but some people who are particularly sensitive, who recognize that they travel in the world with higher levels of reactivity, meditation can really have a meaningful impact. As you begin to work with your own reactions and realize that you don’t need to respond that way. When you’re somebody who’s highly sensitive and highly reactive to the world, you think the world is scary because your body’s always telling you it is, because you’re kind of buzzy and feeling anxious and feeling uncomfortable, you assume that there’s something wrong. Really what’s often going on is it’s just your limbic system and your amygdala hyper-reacting and telling you there’s danger when there is none. This process of going in and retraining your mind and body to say, “Hey, actually, everything’s cool. We can calm down now,” is a really powerful, powerful process.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, and I think a lot of people … I like what you said about how we’re under a lot more stress than we realize and when we have stressors from nutrient deficiencies, emotional things going on, high paced, fast lifestyle and we have EMF bombarding us, there’s a lot of things working on us and on our brain and our brain waves that we’re not aware of, and meditation can really go a long way to help retrain your brain and bringing you back to focus.
Ariel Garten: Because ultimately, in reality, everything is okay. Most of the damage that we do to ourselves, physically and psychologically, is based on these hyper-reactive fear responses that we have. I know it’s something I’ve lived myself. I have chemical sensitivities and my body and my brain would freak out when somebody used Windex. Most of the world was okay with Windex, but I just was not.
Ariel Garten: It’s because I had become hyper-reactive to something that is really relatively benign. There’s so many examples in which our body starts to hyper-react to things and we don’t think or we don’t recognize the opportunity to train it out of that and to say, “It’s okay. We can calm down.” All of us can just exist at a baseline, that calm and even baseline and then deal appropriately with the world around us.
Wendy Myers: How long has Muse been around?
Ariel Garten: We launched in 2014 and so Muse has been in market now for I guess almost five years. That’s Muse 1 launched in 2014. Must 2 launched at the end of last year, 2018. Whereas Muse 1 gives you real time feedback on your brain, Muse 2 gives you real time feedback on your brain as well as your body, your breath, your heart and your movement.
Ariel Garten: It’s this amazing total mind, body meditation experience that actually can track your movement. You can find stillness. For a lot of people, simply finding stillness in their body is the first place to start in meditation. You can actually hear the beating of your heart, so every beat of your heart, you hear like the beating of a drum and it’s this beautiful experience that trains your interoception, your ability to become sensitively aware of what’s going on inside your body. Then when you learn to really understand the cues of your heart as it speeds up and it slows down, you can then bring in exercises like breathing exercises. We track your breathing and we teach you how to use your breath to calm down your body and calm down the activity of your heart. It’s like this stunning, mind body synergistic experience.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, because a lot of people have trouble with say regular meditation, where they’re just sitting and trying to be calm and control their breath. They feel like perhaps they’re doing it wrong because they can’t maybe control their thoughts or push all their thoughts out of their mind. A lot of people get frustrated and just quit, because they don’t realize it’s a practice. It’s something that you don’t instantly sit down and become a master at. It’s a practice that you have to do on a regular basis. Muse just takes things to another level. Can you talk a little bit about the differences there about how it helps to upgrade say a regular meditation?
Ariel Garten: Sure, so if you’re somebody who doesn’t have experience with meditation, Muse really teaches you what to do, it holds your hand, it guides you, it shows you what’s supposed to be happening in your brain in a focused attention meditation. It teaches you to do it and it guides you to do it right. If you’re somebody who already has a practice, Muse is really like a mirror into your own mind.
Ariel Garten: In a regular focused attention practice, where you focus your attention on your breath, your mind wanders, you notice that it wanders and you return it. That act of noticing and returning is like doing the repeat at the gym. That’s the work of the meditation. It’s strengthening your attention and your ability to stay in the present moment with the object of your choosing.
Ariel Garten: In a regular meditation practice though, in a 10 minute meditation, maybe your mind’s wandering, it’s then where you realize you’ve been thinking about your grocery list or your fight with your boyfriend. You’re like, “Oh right,” and you bring I back. In a 10 minute meditation, maybe you get three or four returns. With Muse, you are instantly notified when your mind begins to wander and so you can instantly bring it back or you can instantly be cued to bring it back so in a regular 10 minute meditation with Muse, you might get like 100 noticing and returning.
Ariel Garten: It’s that act of noticing that is strengthening our meta cognition, our ability to rise above our thoughts, to see what’s going on inside of our mind and then to be able to make choices about them. Most of us just exist in a world where our thoughts are overwhelming us, our brain is just going, there’s thoughts that going in it all the time and you’re like, “All right. We’re just a thinking being.” With meditation, you learn that you can change that relationship. As soon as your mind begins to wander, you notice it and you choose to put your attention on something else, like your breath, a neutral object, you’ve all the sudden shifted your relationship. You can now choose the contents of your mind.
Ariel Garten: You don’t have to follow those thoughts. You can choose what goes on inside your mind. Once you can choose what goes on inside your mind, you also realize that all those stories that you had rolling around in your mind about the world, you have a choice about them. They’re not necessarily true. They’re not necessarily the way the world is. You can now start to begin to construct your own mental space far more effectively.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, I read a book called The Other 90% a million years ago, but it talked about how evolutionary wise, our brains have developed to look for danger in our environment. Our amygdala’s looking for things … It was about survival, looking for problems in our environment to solve or looking for things that can hurt us, so many times, our brain just naturally will default to negative things, to problems that we need to solve.
Wendy Myers: Albeit in modern times, these are trifle things like, “Oh, I have to get a new computer or I have to reset my password,” or just things that are annoying, but our brains can default to that, so it’s important I think to do meditation to control our mind and control our thoughts and bring ourselves back to where we want to be, which is in a peaceful, positive state.
Ariel Garten: Absolutely.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, and so everyone, I highly recommend trying Muse for yourself. Is there any kind of place listeners can go learn more about Muse or download a PDF about how it works or anything of that nature?
Ariel Garten: Sure, you can go to Choose Muse. Choose Muse is our website and then you can also go to the app store and look at Muse: The Brain Sensing headband and you can download the app itself. The app is not as powerful without the headband, but we also have several hundred guided meditations inside the app, so you begin just by listening to some of Muse’s guided meditations and then when you graduate to the headband, you’re actually able to use the headband with the guidance, which is extremely powerful.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, it’s really, really, guys. It’s so interesting how it works. What is it sensing, exactly? It’s sensing your brain waves with these little electrodes in the headband?
Ariel Garten: You got it. There are sensors on the forehead and behind your ears, so these are EEG sensors. It gives you real clinical grade EEG. It’s tracking your brain wave activity. We characterize the brain waves associated with focused attention versus mind wandering. It can let you know when you’re wandering and when you’re back in focused attention. You do a little calibration at the beginning of each session so that it detects where your brain is at that day. You can do your session relative to where you are here and now for your wandering and your focus.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, and I like how you can track your session so you can get a score of each session and then try to get a score better and better and better.
Ariel Garten: You got it, so you can always go back to your session history. You can see how your score is changing, how your graphs change. At the beginning of a meditation practice, people’s minds are quite noisy, and that’s totally fine and you see as you do more and more practices that graph calms down and you spend more and more time in the calm state.
Ariel Garten: When you spend time in the calm state, you get a notification called the bird, so a little bird comes and tweets on your shoulder and at the beginning, some people find it distracting. You’re like, “Oh no, I got a bird,” and they get all excited and the bird flies away. That’s another little lesson to be able to stay with the rewards, just like you can stay with your failures. There’s tons of lessons, mindfulness lessons built into the mechanics within the Muse system.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, I love it. I just thing it’s just such a neat way to meditate. I like the scoring too. I tend to respond better to that when I’m trying to achieve something or achieve a better score. There’s this more of a motivation build in to do meditation.
Ariel Garten: For clinicians who are working with patients, we actually have the dashboard that allows you to track your patients’ progress with your patient’s permission and so you can actually see their scores, you can see when they’re meditating, when they’re not meditating. When they come back in, you can actually look at it together and say, “Hey, what was happening and this session? What was happening in that session?”
Ariel Garten: Because I know as therapist I would always recommend that my patients meditate and they’d go and they’d never, ever do it, or they do it three times for four minutes. They’re like, “Yes. I meditated,” and you have this huge conversation on their three minute meditation that they did just a couple times. With this dashboard, you can actually create compliance and get people to really adhere to their meditation practice. You can really see the benefit.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, I love that. That’s so good. Yeah, and so is there anything surprising that you learned about Muse or meditation in the five years since you’ve started the company or launched the company?
Ariel Garten: Oh my God, so many, so many, so many things. For me, there’s been so many sort of surprises or insights as my meditation practice deepens. When I began, I thought I had a meditation practice, but I didn’t really. I really couldn’t zone into that state and I couldn’t stay there. Once I did, I sort of got it and it was this beautiful aha moment. It was like when I was 15 and I was in love for the first time and I heard a love song on the radio. I was finally like, “Oh, that’s why people sing about love. Right, that’s why every single song is about love.” Before it was just words. Now, I understand what it is.
Ariel Garten: I got to that point when I started meditating with Muse. It’s like, “Oh, okay,” like light bulb’s on. Then all of the readings that we have of meditation and all of thousands of years and history that I’ve been processing made sense. Those insights came to life and I had those phenomenal moments of like I’m just standing at the bus stop, where everything becomes clear. I’m just present to the bus stop and to everyone there and everything there.
Ariel Garten: This moments where it was I was so grateful to be alive, because being alive just feels so intense and amazing. Those moments when I’m in the fire and stuff is difficult and I’m just completely calm. I’m standing on stage in front of 3,000 people, and in the back of my mind, I’m like, “Why am I not nervous? Why do I feel amazing at this moment and not terrified?” There’s been all of these incredible shifts that start to happen when you can take control of your own inner dialogue and start to shift those relationships with yourself and the world so that you can choose to be the present person that you really deserve to be.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, yeah, that’s really a big thing for me right now is my health’s online and I’ve got just everything in my life is really, really amazing, so I’m trying to focus on non-reactiveness, like when I have a stressor I have something that’s irritating me or something that potentially anger me or what have you, is really practicing that non-reactiveness and meditation is a very important part of that, taking a chunk of time when you’re really going to take for yourself and train your brain to be in the present, train your brain to be calm. That’s when you’re going to be able to perform, so to speak, in these moments of stress or in your relationships or at work or even just in your relationship with yourself, just being more calm and peaceful, leads to a more happy, fulfilling life. That’s not going to just happen. You have to work for that. You have to create this practice to enjoy that reward of peace and staying in the present moment and feeling grateful just in the present.
Ariel Garten: Very, very much so. There’s both turning down the reactivity, the emotional reactivity and turning out ego reactivity. I used to have these killer fights with my husband, where I really felt like I wasn’t being heard and I was clearly right and so why wasn’t he hearing me when I was right and when he didn’t hear me, I then felt rejected, so I would then scream louder, which would then make him react poorly.
Ariel Garten: We’d go through this cycle over and over again. Once I started my long term meditation, sort more significant meditation practice, I started to no longer need to be right. I started to no longer be reactive and feel like there was something that I needed to say but wasn’t heard. I no longer was rejecting him. It’s just like, “Wow. I had all of these ego and fear based behaviors that were perpetuating the cycling and making it really hard for somebody I love to dearly,” and it was like just my ego fighting and defending and being reactive.
Ariel Garten: As soon as you start to crawl that back and be like, “Hold on. Hold on. I’m actually safe. Actually, everything’s fine. Actually, it’s okay,” the transformation is really quite exceptional. The shift in yourself and in your relationships is just … can be mind blowing.
Wendy Myers: Yeah, that’s the exact kind of arguments I’m having with my fiance. I just want to dial all that back a little bit and not be … really practice not being reactive to things. It is probably very much an ego based kind of reactiveness that we all have to work on in ourselves, even if we don’t think we have an ego or what have you, it’s still kind of there haunting us. It’s really important to do meditation to be aware of how you’re reacting to things and if it’s even worth the battle, if it’s even worth reacting to. There has to be some mindfulness around that.
Ariel Garten: Very much so.
Wendy Myers: Thank you so much for coming on the show and teaching us a bit about meditation and how to upgrade your meditation, take things to the next level, because I think this is such an important tool. So people that have so many stressors and don’t really quite know how to bring the stress level down and it’s making people sick. Stress is one of the number one killers today and we have so many different stressors acting on our body that people aren’t aware of it, even if they don’t feel stressed, I assure your our bodies are under a lot of different types of stress. That’s why I’ve been touting meditation, the importance of it the entire time I’ve had myersdetox.com. It’s incredibly important thing to add to your health regimen.
Ariel Garten: You’re completely right and thank you. Yeah, as I said, my body was reacting to like every chemical in the environment, when there was nothing I could do about them. I couldn’t detox my environment, I couldn’t remove all the furniture. I wanted to live a normal life. By training my body to not react to the world, I didn’t even realize how stressful the world itself was, the Windex in my world, the laundry detergents, all these things, what an impact they were having on me. The shift was changing myself. The shift was changing my own reaction, “Hey, you don’t need to hyper-react in that way.”
Wendy Myers: Yes, yes. Yeah, well, thank you so much for coming on the show and everyone … Where can we go to try Muse and learn more about it?
Ariel Garten: So you can find it at choosemuse.com. There’s also a money back guarantee, so you can take it home and try it and then you can find me on Instagram on arielsmusings and Twitter, Ariel Garten.
Wendy Myers: All right, great. Well, thanks so much for coming on the show and everyone, thanks for tuning it every week to the Myers Detox Podcast, where we teach you all about heavy metal detoxification, detox protocols and really, really cool bio hacking techniques to upgrade your life and your health. Thanks for tuning in, and I’ll talk you guys next week.