Dr. Laurel Mellin has researched the heck out of brain states. She outlines five emotional brain states, calling them Brain State 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. The goal is to “Get to 1.”
A snake and a calculator are used to represent the extremes of 5 and 1, respectively. Dr. Mellin calls the middle state “the cuddly puppy.”
If you’ve heard me geek out over Polyvagal Theory, this is all very similar. The state we are in affects us across the board:
I was lucky to hear Dr. Mellin speak at the WELCOA Summit. She spoke about how her work was incorporated by hospital staff: the doctors had to get to Brain State 1 before they could go see patients.
The EBT app really forced me to focus on a huge pain point in my life. You see, you get to “check in” with this app and answer a few questions, simply swiping left to move forward. Depending on which brain state you are in, the app instructs you to do different things.
At the time I started using the app I was working at an extremely toxic company. It was like a “bad boyfriend” scenario. I was remembering the good ‘ol “happy healthy” times and endlessly fighting a good fight to regain sanity for all amidst the new, but now ever-seeping toxicity. The company was moving backwards to the Industrial Revolution fear-based model of “let’s shut off their seeking systems.” I was the person people looked at to affect positive change as I had done before. But alas, I was up against too much. I was in denial. Here is how my EBT app experience went down on one fateful day:
“What is your unrealistic belief?” asked the app.
“That things will magically get better,” I answered and swiped.
“What is your new, realistic belief?” the app asked.
Not having one, I simply swiped to move on.
“Repeat your realistic belief three times,” the app requested.
“F*ck! Okay, I guess I need a realistic belief… Okay,” I sighed and thought for a second or two. As I thought aloud I killed my denial. “I’ll update my resume, go on interviews, and find a new job.” I said it two more times and my heart raced a little, both with sadness and hope.
I highly recommend checking out her book Wired for Joy, as well as her Brain Based Help by EBT App ($9.99 for 4 weeks). She also has a new book out called What’s My Number, and her company has been doing a lot of free webinars lately! Check out her website, ebtconnect.net.