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Combining Mindfulness with Happiness Throughout the New Year

Training for Mindful Happiness

Dr. Jon Cowan - Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Practicing mindfulness is not enough to create a happy, healthy, and successful life.  I suggest that you should consider adding happiness enhancement with our Peak BrainHappiness Trainer Pro to your practice.  Why?

A recent issue of Greater Good magazine from UC Berkeley, in collaboration with Lion's Roar, featured a review of the state of research on mindfulness.  It stated "For exam­ple, a 2014 meta-analy­sis pub­lished in JAMA Inter­nal Med­i­cine exam­ined 47 ran­dom­ized con­trolled tri­als of mind­ful­ness med­i­ta­tion pro­grams, which includ­ed a total of 3,515 par­tic­i­pants. They found that med­i­ta­tion pro­grams result­ed only in small to mod­er­ate reduc­tions in anx­i­ety and depres­sion. Fur­ther­more, there was also low, insuf­fi­cient, or no evi­dence of med­i­ta­tion pro­grams’ effect on pos­i­tive mood and feel­ings and sub­stance use (as well as phys­i­cal self-care like eat­ing habits and sleep)."  

The review stated that mindfulness may produce modest improvements in physical health, but they may be due to other factors.  In contrast, we know from large meta-analyses of studies done by Dr. Ed Diener and colleagues that enhancing happiness leads to improved long-term health and success.  Even the Dali Lama, with his emphasis on mindfulness, has written a message subtitled:  "The Purpose of Life Is to Strive for Happiness".  

So why shouldn't we be combining both--training to achieve "happy mindfulness" or "mindful happiness"?  Having trained myself on the Peak BrainHappiness Trainer Pro, I find that I can create moments combining both of these as a result of pure intention--just deciding to do so, and enjoy it.  It isn't hard to do, and it does last for a while after I stop intending.  It really feels good.  Its not just short term...

Mindfulness is related to focused attention, which is one of the dimensions of mental processing the Trainer provides feedback to enhance.  Improved happiness is a result of training our Neureka! dimension.  In fact, our recently published research demonstrating enhanced happiness for at least four months was done with our Peak BrainHappiness feedback screen design, which combines the two.  You need to focus (lightly) on the DVD or video image to keep it bright, and allow it to enhance your happiness and appreciation to make the image larger.  We believe that this approach actually trains the combination of mindfulness and happiness.  Its probably easier to master than traditional mindfulness training, and more useful in your life.   

Along with Dr. Ken Blum, the discoverer of the importance of dopamine in the addictions, we believe that Neureka! training can enhance the proper functioning of the dopamine system in the brain.  Our data suggests that this training may produce a long-term improvement in the "set point" of the happiness system in as few as 12 sessions, just once a week.  It may actually be quicker with more frequent practice, like most learning.  If an addiction-prone individual can be taught to create happiness from their own intention, rather than something outside themselves, this would be extremely helpful in recovery.  

Now I'm not saying that our system is better than or even equal to traditional approaches in teaching pure mindfulness.  I am sure that there are aspects of mindfulness that you can't learn from our Trainer.  However, you can train to enhance your happiness while you practice the mindfulness approaches you favor.  You can set up our system to just provide a sound (a bell) that increases in pitch as you become happier, and adjust the volume to be unobtrusive.  

The system also offers another approach, the Medit-Aider, which allows you to automatically set a success zone for the three dimensions (Focus, Alertness, and Neureka!) and gives you an alarm--a louder sound--when any one is out of range.   

Some people can hold onto their gains for years after only one demonstration--for example, world-famous psychologist Dr. Stanley Krippner, the author of 25 books, stated: "The happiness that emerged from the session has never left me, and I go back to some of the self-monitoring techniques I used during the session to keep me contented, alert, and positive during each day."

By the way, I'm looking for feedback about which title is best--"happy mindfulness" or "mindful happiness"?  Do you think there is a difference in meaning between them?  I'm also looking for potential customers with mindfulness training to try these approaches and provide comments.  

For more information, please check out our website.

One Trainer can be shared by the whole family, class, or clinic, with no per-use charges.  No license or certification is required to train others with this educational instrument.  We also offer an add-on product, the Mood Elevator, based on remarkable published research on improving the depressed feelings of those who are suffering from the blues. 

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