“Ease your storm”
Mechanic to ESP . . . . (Sometimes)
There is an incredible mind out there living happily in the body of Physicist Dr Richard Alan Miller – Princeton – MIT Emeritus Professor.
Rick, as he prefers to be known, is first and foremost a Internationally recognised Physicist but he takes it much further than that. He was/is a Nationally acknowledged genius, the proud owner of an Eidetic memory and confident across a number of Scientific disciplines. Importantly some of them lay outside the Standard Model. He was able to find answers where nobody else could.
It was Dr Miller who inspired and advised on many episodes of the X-Files and also the inspiration behind the character Dr Walter Bishop in the TV series Fringe.
Alongside all of his other areas of expertise, one of his particular fields of study and engagement is Consciousness and how we engage with it and utilise it.
During the course of his ongoing and illustrious career Rick Miller spent several years involved in the induction and training of the elite unit of the US Navy Seal Corp.
In the early 70’s, following a great deal of research, the US Navy had concluded that the No.1 skill to be identified and developed in training SEAL recruits was their INTUITION . . . . . Intuition kept them alive. If this skill above all others could be developed as an integral part of an Elite Military Training Program the result would be Super Soldiers. So Rick Miller was asked to develop a range of programs to do just that . . . he did . . . and they were very effective.
Essentially by utilising hypnotic techniques he taught SEALS advanced Self-hypnosis skills to enable them achieve deeply altered states of consciousness – trance – and while in these states, how to connect to frequencies of Brain/Mind that would heighten and expand their Sensory Array to enable them to sense information they would otherwise not be aware of – Extra Sensory Perception – militarised.
At the core of this training was the development of skills that are commonly known as:
These ideas transfer seamlessly into Sports and Gaming allowing for rapid integration and intuitive deployment of heightened levels of performance instinctively and without thought.
The world of Sport & Gaming can can be some of the most exciting and surprising arenas in which to apply hypnotic and associated techniques, meditation comes to mind.
Both the appeal and the challenge in Sport is the relatively clear and “unambiguous” feedback achieved through event scoring, alongside an insight into some of the most exotic states of Consciousness and Mind found in all of human experience.
Sports hypnosis, in addition to dealing with the more traditional range of challenges that even athletes can suffer from, anxiety, depression and the like, can be highly effective when applied to a wide range of requirements at the core of elevated sports performance.
For example Sports Hypnosis can be highly effective in establishing, radically enhancing and deeply integrating common routines used by athletes that can include:
- Pre-tournament preparation
- Pre-play routines
- Pre-shot routines
- Focus recovery routines
- Post-play routines
Here is a clip from the Joe Rogan Experience where Joe & his guest Aubrey Marcus discuss the current use of hypnosis in the UFC.
In addition, particularly when working alongside technical coaches, Sports Hypnosis can utilise altered states of Awareness to take things significantly beyond these skill sets.
Here is Shane Battier, a US team Basketball play talking about how analyitics help him with his game. This information used in concert with hypnotic skills can be a very powerful and effective developmental force.
Within Peak Performance States or what are often referred to as ‘flow states’ or ‘the Zone’ can invariably be found mind phenomena that mark out and define these most illusive and compelling mind states.
Here is best selling author Steven Kotler describes how recent findings to do with the Neuro-electricity of the Brain and how Flow states are triggered.
As fascinating as this information is, it is nothing new. EEG technology has been around since the end of the 19th Century and many ancient cultures around the world have held Energy and Vibration at the core of their belief systems, often expressed in the form of chanting, drumming and singing, however 21st Century technology is catching up and beginning to see ancient accounts of myth and legends in a very new light.
In 1978 Michael Murphy, Founder of the Esalen Institute for Consciousness research in California and later the global Shivas Irons Golf Society based in his best selling novel “Golf in the Kingdom,” along with his co-author Rhea White, founder of The Exceptional Human Experience Network, published a fascinating book entitled “The Psychic Side of Sport” – Extraordinary Stories from the Spiritual Underground in Sports.
In this excellent and meticulously researched book they recount some of the ‘extra-sensory’ or Peak Performance experiences reported by many of the top sports stars of the day. Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Muhammad Ali, Jean Claude Killy, Billie Jean King among many others, including their coaches, who recount incredible experiences while immersed in these profound states of mind.
These commonly encountered yet rarely reported experiences typically included:
♦ Time Distortion – When the sense of the flow of time radically changes, commonly a perception of time slowing down, or even stopping is reported. These experiences typically allow the player to carryout decision making and produce skills effortlessly and to the highest levels of ability and potential. Often associated with feelings of great composure and confidence.
♦ Telepathy – Where communication with third parties takes place through channels other than the five classical senses. This is often reported as athletes experiencing direct communication with partners (animal and human), team mates, a coach, an inspirational figure, loved one or friend – even someone deceased!
♦ Clairvoyance or Precognition – Terms used to describe the transfer of information about an object, location or physical event through means other than the classical five senses. These experiences induce a strong sense of knowing the outcome of a particular event or series of events before they occur.
♦ Hallucination & Illusion – An hallucination is a sensory perception experienced in the absence of an external stimulus, as distinct from an illusion, which is an altered perception of an external stimulus or event. These are in effect radically enhanced visualisation skills that bring about extreme levels of confidence and skill
♦ Out of Body Experiences – An out-of-body experience (OBE) is an experience that typically involves a sensation of floating outside of one’s body and, in some cases, seeing one’s own physical body from a distinctly external location, normally above. There are many reports of players “watching” themselves play. This experience is invariably associated with elevated levels of performance.
♦ Psychokinesis – Psychokinesis is often described as the power to effect objects purely by mental means. The ability, by force of will (or something else), to effect the course of events. Many players claim to have “influenced” events in this way.
♦ Spiritual Connection / Enlightenment – Broadly involves the acquisition of new wisdom, understanding and insight from a spiritual source enabling clarity of perception and ease of action, once again a commonly reported experience.
This is by no means an exhaustive list and many of the experiences reported by these elite sporting stars falls into one or more of these categories.
In 1978 mainstream scientists simply rejected these phenomena as figments of the imagination, coincidence and fraud, so far out into the land of Woo Woo and to be ridiculed and ignored. Well as it turns out, they were wrong. Please read on.
Since 1978 a great deal of research has gone into all of these abilities carried out by highly qualified specialists in their field all over the World with the true spirit of science driving them and an open mind to experiment in, follow the evidence where ever it leads.
One of the most respected researchers in the field is Dr Dean Radin, Chief Scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences, initially set up by Edgar Mitchell, the Lunar Module Pilot of Apollo 14 and the sixth person to walk on the moon. He wanted to answers to some very profound questions . . . . .
Many modern day sporting stars have gone on record as having experienced these kinds of events, often speaking in the most glowing terms as these experiences invariably coincide with peak levels of performance, in fact having had one or more of these experiences it is often the Greatest desire of the person involved to have more – they intuitively recognise that these experiences are The Key to peak experience.
These mind states are by no means exclusive to Athletes, they’ve been commonly reported throughout all of human history by Artists, Scientists, Martial Artists, Doctors, Warriors, Religious & Spiritual practitioners, in fact in just about every elevated realm of human endeavor.
Over the years many attempts have been made to come up with explanations and a large number of books and scientific papers have been written on the subject. Normally the explanations range somewhere between the effects of bio-chemical events occurring in the brain as a result of the heightened arousal levels many athletes inevitably experience, and the wide range of uses made of the Eastern esoteric models of Consciousness which can be wonderfully enlightening but difficult to associate with without close cultural understanding.
Due to the huge influence of the commonly held traditional psychological models in the West, many of the models employed for Peak Performance by coaches and sports psychologists are generally based on the erroneous assumption that these phenomena are produced exclusively by the brain and nervous system and in short are happening inside the Head / Brain and are isolated there. They are generally Mechanistic models, modeled on the old mechanistic scientific paradigm, the ‘man as machine’ view, now being superseded by a more enlightened understanding and mounting levels of scientific interest and evidence.
A profound paradigm shift is currently underway into how the human mind / body system is understood and operates, this change could be described as a transition form the age of the Mechanic to the age of the Artist, the age of Flow. Albeit a very Brain centric view, here is best selling author Steven Kotler with some of his thoughts on the Flow state.
A new generation of scientists and researchers, equipped with increasingly sophisticated technologies, are now providing alternative explanations for these experiences much more in line with the actual experience of the people who have them.
Research being carried out all around the world into Consciousness and associated phenomena describe how these events may be triggered and occurring in a very different way to what was previously understood.
This is very good news.
By adopting models more in line with evidence and experience is much more likely to lead to profound changes and developments that are more reliable, easily replicated and further enhanced, and as competitors become more familiar with this emerging understanding the process will accelerate.
Of all the descriptions of these special states of mind the Sports Hypnosis Model prefers the term Flow. This term was originally coined, or at least popularised, by Mihaly Csikszenmihalyi, Professor of Psychology, Chicago University, in his book ‘Optimal Experience‘.
Flow implies movement, streams of energy and information of varying frequencies taking place allowing for concentrated, focused awareness on a specific outcome. A Peak Performance or Flow state.
This is the realm of Sports Hypnosis.
Hypnosis is an ancient methodology specifically designed to work with the higher Aspects of Mind and Consciousness. Trance states have been used for millennia to allow engagement with higher states of consciousness to achieve specific intentions and outcomes.
Sports science & technology is now firmly established in the international Sports arena and has made it possible to measure a staggering number of competitor metrics, both physiological and psychological, the challenge for the player or coach is to make sense of all this data and integrate it in such a way that leads to enhanced levels of performance, for many a huge, and sometimes impossible challenge. Sports hypnosis can be of great assistance in fully integrating this plethora of information to best advantage.
Sport when played at the highest levels of talent and skill has always had what was known as a ‘mystical’ component. A modern day analogy would be gaining access to a Super-fast Broadband connection to higher levels of consciousness and dramatically enhanced perceptions in the extended sensory array.
Please get in touch if you would like to discuss this concept further.