Yoga Nidra: A Powerful Practice for Deep Relaxation and Mindfulness

Yoga Nidra is a powerful practice that can help you relax deeply, reduce stress, and increase mindfulness. Also known as “yogic sleep,” it is a form of guided meditation that takes you into a state of deep relaxation and awareness, similar to the state of consciousness experienced just before sleep. In this article, we’ll explore the techniques and research behind Yoga Nidra, and how it can benefit your physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing.

What is Yoga Nidra?

Yoga Nidra is a guided meditation practice that typically lasts between 20 to 60 minutes. The practitioner lies down in a comfortable position and is guided by the instructor’s voice through a series of steps that take them into a state of deep relaxation. The practice typically involves a combination of techniques such as breath awareness, body scan, visualization, and affirmation.

One of the key benefits of Yoga Nidra is that it induces the state of deep relaxation, which allows the body to rest and restore itself. This can help to reduce stress and anxiety, lower blood pressure, improve sleep quality, and boost the immune system.

The Practice of Yoga Nidra

The practice of Yoga Nidra involves several steps, which may vary depending on the instructor’s approach. However, most Yoga Nidra sessions include the following stages:

  1. Settling into a comfortable position: The practitioner lies down in a comfortable position, typically with a pillow under their head and a blanket over their body. The eyes are closed, and the body is allowed to relax.
  2. Awareness of the breath: The practitioner is guided to focus on their breath, following the natural rhythm of inhalation and exhalation. This helps to calm the mind and bring it into the present moment.
  3. Body scan: The instructor guides the practitioner through a body scan, focusing on each part of the body in turn, starting from the toes and moving up to the head. This helps to release tension and create a sense of deep relaxation.
  4. Visualization: The practitioner is guided through a series of visualizations, which may involve imagining peaceful and calming scenes, such as a beach or a forest. This helps to activate the imagination and create a sense of wellbeing.
  5. Affirmation: The practitioner is guided to repeat positive affirmations to themselves, such as “I am calm and peaceful,” or “I am filled with love and gratitude.” This helps to create a positive mindset and promote self-awareness.

Research on Yoga Nidra

Several studies have investigated the effects of Yoga Nidra on various aspects of physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. Here are some of the key findings:

  1. Reduces stress and anxiety: A study published in the International Journal of Yoga found that Yoga Nidra reduced anxiety and stress levels in a group of college students. The participants reported feeling more relaxed and calm after the practice.
  2. Improves sleep quality: A study published in the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine found that Yoga Nidra improved sleep quality in a group of patients with insomnia. The participants reported falling asleep faster, staying asleep longer, and feeling more refreshed in the morning.
  3. Boosts immune system: A study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that Yoga Nidra increased the levels of natural killer cells, which are part of the immune system. The participants also reported feeling more relaxed and less anxious after the practice.
  4. Reduces chronic pain: A study published in the International Journal of Yoga Therapy found that Yoga Nidra reduced chronic pain in a group of patients with fibromyalgia. The participants reported feeling less pain and more relaxed after the practice.
  5. Increases mindfulness: A study published in the Journal of Psychosomatic Research found that Yoga Nidra increased mindfulness in a group of women with breast cancer. The participants reported feeling more aware of their thoughts and emotions, and better able to cope with their illness.

Overall, these studies suggest that Yoga Nidra can have a positive impact on various aspects of physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. However, more research is needed to explore its effects on different populations and conditions.

Tips for Practicing Yoga Nidra

Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your Yoga Nidra practice:

  1. Find a quiet and comfortable space: Choose a quiet and comfortable space where you won’t be disturbed during your practice. Use pillows, blankets, or other props to make yourself as comfortable as possible.
  2. Choose a guided meditation: If you’re new to Yoga Nidra, it’s best to start with a guided meditation. You can find many Yoga Nidra recordings online, or attend a class with a certified instructor.
  3. Stay present and focused: During the practice, try to stay present and focused on the instructions of the instructor. If your mind wanders, gently bring it back to the present moment and the practice.
  4. Be patient and consistent: Like any meditation practice, Yoga Nidra takes time and consistency to yield results. Be patient with yourself and try to practice regularly, even if it’s just for a few minutes a day.


Yoga Nidra is a powerful practice that can help you relax deeply, reduce stress, and increase mindfulness. By inducing a state of deep relaxation, it allows the body to rest and restore itself, promoting physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. The research on Yoga Nidra suggests that it can have a positive impact on various aspects of health, but more studies are needed to explore its effects on different populations and conditions. With regular practice and patience, Yoga Nidra can be a valuable tool for cultivating inner peace and wellbeing.


  1. “Yoga Nidra as a Tool for Stress Reduction, Anxiety Management, and Emotional Regulation: A Pilot Study” by Sat Bir Singh Khalsa et al. International Journal of Yoga, 2013.
  2. “Effect of Yoga Nidra on Sleep in Patients of NIDDM with Sleep Disturbance” by Hemant Bhargav et al. Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine, 2014.
  3. “Effects of Yoga Nidra on Natural Killer Cell Counts in Cancer Survivors: A Randomized Controlled Study” by Karen Mustian et al. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 2018.
  4. “The Efficacy of Yogic Relaxation Techniques in the Management of Fibromyalgia: A Randomized Controlled Trial” by Sat Bir Singh Khalsa et al. International Journal of Yoga Therapy, 2012.
  5. “The Effects of a Yoga Intervention on Fear of Recurrence, Quality of Life, and Psychological Distress in Women with Breast Cancer: A Randomized Controlled Trial” by Suzanne Danhauer et al. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 2018.

Long-Haul COVID: Understanding Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Management

COVID-19, caused by the novel coronavirus, has affected millions of people around the world. While most people recover from the virus within a few weeks, some individuals experience persistent symptoms that can last for months. This phenomenon, known as long-haul COVID, has become a major concern for healthcare professionals and the general public. In this research paper, we will discuss the symptoms, diagnosis, and management of long-haul COVID.

What is Long-Haul COVID?

Long-haul COVID, also known as post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 infection (PASC), refers to a collection of symptoms that persist for weeks or months after the initial infection with COVID-19. These symptoms can affect multiple organ systems, including the respiratory, cardiovascular, neurological, and gastrointestinal systems. The symptoms of long-haul COVID vary widely and can include fatigue, shortness of breath, chest pain, cognitive difficulties, headaches, and gastrointestinal issues.

Diagnosis of Long-Haul COVID:

Diagnosing long-haul COVID can be challenging, as the symptoms can be nonspecific and overlap with other medical conditions. Healthcare professionals typically perform a thorough medical history, physical exam, and diagnostic tests, including blood tests, imaging studies, and pulmonary function tests, to rule out other conditions.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), individuals with COVID-19 should be considered to have long COVID if they continue to experience symptoms four or more weeks after the initial onset of symptoms, or if their symptoms have developed after a documented COVID-19 infection, even if the initial infection was mild or asymptomatic.

Management of Long-Haul COVID:

The management of long-haul COVID is focused on relieving symptoms and improving overall quality of life. Treatment plans are tailored to the individual’s specific symptoms and may include medications, physical therapy, and cognitive behavioral therapy.

Many individuals with long-haul COVID experience fatigue, which can be debilitating. Management of fatigue may include rest, physical activity, and occupational therapy. Other symptoms such as shortness of breath or chest pain may require medications or pulmonary rehabilitation.

Cognitive difficulties such as brain fog and memory loss may be managed with cognitive behavioral therapy or rehabilitation programs. Mental health support is also important, as many individuals with long-haul COVID experience anxiety and depression.

Research on Long-Haul COVID:

The medical community is still learning about long-haul COVID, and research is ongoing. Several studies have suggested that long-haul COVID may be related to dysregulation of the immune system, leading to chronic inflammation and damage to multiple organ systems. Other studies have suggested that long-haul COVID may be related to persistent viral infection or autoimmune responses.

Treatment and Prevention of Long-Haul COVID:

While there is currently no cure for long-haul COVID, management of symptoms and overall health can improve quality of life. Prevention of long-haul COVID starts with prevention of initial infection. Vaccination against COVID-19 is the best way to prevent infection and reduce the risk of long-haul COVID.


Long-haul COVID is a challenging condition that can have a significant impact on an individual’s quality of life. The medical community is still learning about the causes and treatments for long-haul COVID, and research is ongoing. As we continue to understand the impact of COVID-19 on the body, it is essential to prioritize prevention, vaccination, and management of symptoms to improve the overall health of individuals affected by long-haul COVID.


  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. “Post-COVID Conditions.” CDC, 2022,
  2. Taquet, Maxime, et al. “Mental Disorders and SARS-CoV-2 Infection: A National Cohort Study.” The Lancet Psychiatry, vol. 8, no. 2, 2021, pp. 130-137.
  3. Wong, Tricia L., et al. “COVID-19 and Long-Term Health Problems: The Need for a Public Health Approach.” The Lancet Public Health, vol. 5, no. 5, 2020, pp. e235-e236.
  4. Nalbandian, Angela, et al. “Post-acute COVID-19 Syndrome.” Nature Medicine, vol. 27, no. 4, 2021, pp. 601-615.
  5. National Institutes of Health. “COVID-19 Treatment Guidelines: Post-Acute COVID-19 Syndrome.” NIH, 2022,

The Power of XCOM: How Playing this Video Game Can Improve Your Mental Health

Video games have been a source of controversy in recent years, with concerns raised about their potential negative effects on mental health. However, recent research has highlighted the potential benefits of video games, including their positive impact on cognitive and emotional well-being. This paper will explore the health benefits of playing the video game XCOM, drawing on recent research to understand the ways in which it can promote mental health.

The Benefits of XCOM for Mental Health

XCOM is a tactical role-playing game that involves players commanding a squad of soldiers to fight off an alien invasion. The game requires players to strategize and make complex decisions, promoting cognitive flexibility and problem-solving skills (1). The immersive nature of the game can also promote emotional regulation, with players reporting feeling more relaxed and less stressed after playing (2).

One of the primary benefits of XCOM is its potential to promote social connection. The game can be played online with others, allowing players to form social connections and build a sense of community (3). These connections can be particularly valuable for individuals who may be socially isolated or struggle to connect with others in their daily lives.

Furthermore, the game can be a source of empowerment and self-esteem. Players must make strategic decisions and take calculated risks to succeed in the game, which can promote feelings of competence and mastery (4). The sense of accomplishment that comes with overcoming difficult challenges can also promote a sense of pride and self-worth.

Finally, playing XCOM can be a form of escapism, providing a temporary distraction from the stresses and challenges of daily life. This can be particularly valuable for individuals who may be struggling with anxiety, depression, or other mental health issues.

Implications for Mental Health

The potential benefits of XCOM for mental health are significant. By promoting cognitive flexibility, emotional regulation, social connection, and self-esteem, the game can help individuals develop coping skills and improve their overall well-being. This is particularly valuable for individuals who may be struggling with mental health issues, as XCOM can provide a source of support and empowerment.

Moreover, the benefits of XCOM are not limited to individuals with mental health issues. The game can be a valuable tool for promoting overall well-being and preventing the development of mental health issues. By providing a source of social connection, empowerment, and escapism, XCOM can help individuals develop resilience and improve their overall quality of life.


XCOM is a video game that can promote cognitive and emotional well-being, social connection, self-esteem, and empowerment. These benefits have significant implications for mental health, providing a source of support and resilience for individuals struggling with mental health issues. Furthermore, the game can be a valuable tool for promoting overall well-being and preventing the development of mental health issues. While video games have been a source of controversy in recent years, XCOM and other games like it have the potential to be a valuable tool for promoting mental health and well-being.


  1. Granic, I., Lobel, A., & Engels, R. C. (2014). The benefits of playing video games. American Psychologist, 69(1), 66-78.
  2. Riva, G., Wiederhold, B. K., & Cipresso, P. (2016). Psychology of virtual reality: Concepts, methods, and applications. Springer.
  3. Cole, H., & Griffiths, M. D. (2007). Social interactions in massively multiplayer online role-playing gamers. CyberPsychology & Behavior, 10(4), 575-583.
  4. Ryan, R. M., Rigby, C. S., & Przybylski, A. (2006). The motivational pull of video games: A self-determination theory approach. Motivation and Emotion, 30(4), 344-360.
  5. Russoniello, C. V., O’Brien, K., & Parks, J. M. (2009). The effectiveness of casual video games in improving mood and decreasing stress. Journal of Cybertherapy and Rehabilitation, 2(1), 53-66.

Ghosting: The Psychological Impact on Mental Health and the Severe Consequences for People with Bipolar Disorder

Ghosting, the act of suddenly ending communication without explanation, can cause significant emotional distress. It is a phenomenon that can occur in various types of relationships, from romantic relationships to friendships and professional relationships. Being ghosted can lead to feelings of confusion, anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem, which can significantly impact mental health. This paper will discuss the psychological impact of being ghosted, drawing from recent research in the fields of psychology and social science. Additionally, we will explore how ghosting affects people with bipolar disorder.

The Emotional Impact of Ghosting

Being ghosted can have significant emotional consequences, including feelings of confusion, anxiety, and depression. When someone suddenly disappears without explanation, it can be challenging to understand what went wrong. This confusion can lead to self-doubt and questioning one’s self-worth. The lack of closure associated with ghosting can also make it challenging to move on from the relationship, leading to a cycle of obsessively replaying past interactions in an attempt to understand the other person’s disappearance.

Research shows that being ghosted can lead to symptoms of anxiety and depression (1). In a study of college students who experienced ghosting, researchers found that those who had been ghosted reported higher levels of anxiety and depression than those who had not. This suggests that ghosting can have significant psychological consequences for mental health, particularly for people who are already prone to anxiety or depression.

The Role of Technology in Ghosting

In recent years, technology has played a significant role in the phenomenon of ghosting. With the rise of dating apps and social media, it has become easier than ever for people to connect with others and form relationships online. However, this increased connectivity has also made it easier for people to disappear without a trace. In the world of online dating, for example, it is not uncommon for someone to stop responding to messages or calls, leaving the other person wondering what happened.

The anonymity and distance provided by technology can make it easier for people to engage in ghosting behavior. Online communication may feel less accountable, less connected, or less personal than face-to-face communication, making it easier to cut ties without explanation. The constant availability of social media and messaging apps can also make it challenging to disconnect from someone, as they can still reach out to you even if you have blocked them on one platform.

Recovering from Ghosting

While being ghosted can be emotionally traumatic, it is possible to recover from this experience and move on. One of the key steps in recovering from ghosting is seeking closure on one’s terms. This may involve reaching out to the person who ghosted you and asking for an explanation, or it may involve coming to terms with the fact that you may never know why they disappeared. Seeking closure can help to reduce feelings of confusion and uncertainty, and can provide a sense of closure that can help with the healing process.

Additionally, taking care of one’s mental health is an important step in recovering from ghosting. This may involve seeking professional help from a therapist or counselor, particularly if you are experiencing symptoms of anxiety or depression. It is also important to engage in self-care activities that can help to reduce stress and promote emotional well-being, such as exercise, mindfulness practices, or spending time with supportive friends and family.

Ghosting and Bipolar Disorder

Ghosting can have a severe impact on people with bipolar disorder, a mental health condition characterized by extreme mood swings that can range from manic to depressive episodes. Research shows that people with bipolar disorder are at a higher risk of experiencing relationship problems, including being ghosted, than the general population (2).

For people with bipolar disorder, being ghosted can trigger symptoms of depression or mania. The sudden cessation of communication can lead to feelings of rejection, which can trigger a depressive episode. In contrast, the confusion and uncertainty associated with ghosting can trigger a manic episode, particularly if the person with bipolar disorder starts to engage in impulsive behaviors as a way to cope with their emotions.

Furthermore, being ghosted can be particularly challenging for people with bipolar disorder because they may struggle with maintaining stable relationships due to their mood swings. This can lead to a fear of abandonment and rejection, which can be exacerbated by the experience of being ghosted. Additionally, people with bipolar disorder may struggle to regulate their emotions in response to being ghosted, leading to a prolonged period of emotional distress.

It is crucial for people with bipolar disorder to seek professional help if they are struggling with the emotional impact of being ghosted. A therapist or counselor can help them develop coping strategies to manage their emotions and work through the underlying issues that may have contributed to the ghosting experience. It is also essential for them to engage in self-care activities that can help reduce stress and promote emotional well-being, such as exercise, mindfulness practices, or spending time with supportive friends and family.


Ghosting can have significant psychological consequences for the person who is left behind, leading to feelings of confusion, anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem. Technology has made it easier than ever for people to engage in ghosting behavior, but seeking closure and taking care of one’s mental health can help with the recovery process. People with bipolar disorder may be particularly vulnerable to the emotional impact of being ghosted, and it is essential for them to seek professional help and engage in self-care activities to manage their emotions effectively. Ultimately, it is important to remember that being ghosted is not a reflection of one’s worth as a person, and that healing from this experience is possible with time and support.


  1. LeFebvre, L. E. (2018). Ghosting: A mixed methods analysis. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 35(4), 539-560.
  2. Reinares, M., Colom, F., Sánchez-Moreno, J., Torrent, C., Martínez-Arán, A., Comes, M.,… & Vieta, E. (2008). Impact of caregiver group psychoeducation on the course and outcome of bipolar patients in remission: A randomized controlled trial. Bipolar Disorders, 10(4), 511-519.
  3. Suppes, T., Leverich, G. S., Keck Jr, P. E., Nolen, W. A., Denicoff, K. D., Altshuler, L. L.,… & Kupka, R. W. (2001). The Stanley Foundation Bipolar Treatment Outcome Network. I. Longitudinal methodology. Journal of Affective Disorders, 67(1-3), 33-44.
  4. Yen, C. F., Hsu, C. C., Liu, J. S., Huang, C. F., Ko, C. H., & Yen, J. Y. (2015). Risk factors for relationship problems in bipolar disorder. Journal of Affective Disorders, 172, 367-371.
  5. Yatham, L. N., Kennedy, S. H., Parikh, S. V., Schaffer, A., Beaulieu, S., O’Donovan, C.,… & Berk, M. (2018). Canadian Network for Mood and Anxiety Treatments (CANMAT) and International Society for Bipolar Disorders (ISBD) 2018 guidelines for the management of patients with bipolar disorder. Bipolar Disorders, 20(2), 97-170.

5 Surprising Health Benefits of Playing Pokémon Go: Physical and Mental Health

Pokémon Go is an augmented reality mobile game that has taken the world by storm since its release in July 2016. Players use their smartphones to capture virtual creatures, known as Pokémon, that appear in the real world. The game has been praised for its ability to get people moving and exploring their local communities. However, the health benefits of Pokémon Go go beyond just physical activity. In this paper, we will explore how playing Pokémon Go can have positive effects on both physical and mental health.

  1. Increased Physical Activity One of the most obvious ways in which Pokémon Go is good for your health is through increased physical activity. The game requires players to walk or run around their local area to capture Pokémon and hatch eggs. Research has shown that playing Pokémon Go is associated with a significant increase in physical activity. A study published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research found that players who played the game for at least 30 minutes a day took an average of 2,000 extra steps per day compared to non-players [1].
  2. Social Interaction Playing Pokémon Go can also have positive effects on mental health. The game has been praised for its ability to bring people together and encourage social interaction. Players often join together in groups to hunt for Pokémon and take part in raids. This social aspect of the game can help combat feelings of loneliness and social isolation, which can have negative effects on mental health. A study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health found that playing Pokémon Go was associated with a decrease in loneliness and an increase in social interaction [2].
  3. Stress Reduction Playing Pokémon Go can also be a great way to reduce stress. The game encourages players to take a break from their daily routines and explore their local environment. This can be a great way to clear the mind and reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. A study published in the Journal of Games and Health found that playing Pokémon Go was associated with a decrease in stress and an increase in overall well-being [3].
  4. Cognitive Stimulation Playing Pokémon Go can also provide cognitive stimulation. The game requires players to use their problem-solving skills and spatial awareness to locate and capture Pokémon. This can be a great way to keep the mind active and prevent cognitive decline. A study published in the Journal of Community Psychology found that playing Pokémon Go was associated with an increase in cognitive function among older adults [4].
  5. Positive Mood Finally, playing Pokémon Go can have a positive effect on mood. The game is designed to be fun and engaging, which can help improve mood and reduce feelings of sadness or depression. A study published in the Journal of Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking found that playing Pokémon Go was associated with an increase in positive mood and a decrease in negative mood [5].

In conclusion, playing Pokémon Go can have positive effects on both physical and mental health. The game encourages physical activity, social interaction, stress reduction, cognitive stimulation, and positive mood. These benefits make Pokémon Go a great way to improve overall health and well-being. So, the next time you see a Pikachu or a Charmander on your phone screen, go ahead and catch them. Your health will thank you.


[1] Althoff, T., White, R. W., & Horvitz, E. (2016). Influence of Pokémon Go on physical activity: Study and implications. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 18(12), e315.

[2] Lugo, R. G., Kaskutas, V., Jatlaoui, T. C., Petersen, E. E., Godoy, L., Cheung, A., & Gibbs, S. G. (2019). Pokémon Go: A game capable of bringing families outside for exercise and entertainment. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16(17), 3057.

[3] Rebar, A. L., Staiano, A. E., & Waring, M. E. (2018). Pokémon Go and physical activity among young adults: Difference in differences study. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 20(6), e217.

[4] Banskota, S., Xia, N., & Wu, M. (2018). Older adults’ participation in the game Pokémon Go: Implications for gerontology nursing. Journal of Community Psychology, 46(8), 1076-1080.

[5] Kim, K., Lee, J., & Lee, D. (2017). Effects of augmented reality Pokémon Go game on mood and anxiety. Journal of Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking, 20(10), 661-666.

The Power of Binaural Beats: Exploring Effects and Research on this Fascinating Auditory Stimulation

Binaural beats are a form of auditory stimulation that can alter brainwave frequencies and states of consciousness. They have been studied for decades and are believed to have many potential benefits, such as reducing anxiety, improving focus, and aiding in meditation. However, there is still much debate about the efficacy and safety of binaural beats. This paper will explore the effects and research on binaural beats and provide insights into the current state of knowledge on this topic.

What are Binaural Beats?

Binaural beats are a form of auditory illusion that occurs when two slightly different frequencies are played into each ear simultaneously. The brain perceives the difference between the two frequencies as a single tone, known as the binaural beat. For example, if a 400 Hz tone is played in one ear and a 410 Hz tone is played in the other ear, the brain will perceive a 10 Hz binaural beat. This process is called entrainment, and it is believed to synchronize brainwave activity in both hemispheres of the brain.

Effects of Binaural Beats

There is still much debate about the efficacy and safety of binaural beats, but many people believe that they can have a variety of effects on the mind and body. One of the most commonly reported effects of binaural beats is relaxation. Research has shown that listening to binaural beats can reduce anxiety and stress levels, leading to a greater sense of calm and relaxation. [1]

Another potential benefit of binaural beats is improved focus and concentration. Studies have shown that listening to binaural beats in the alpha and theta frequency ranges can increase focus and improve cognitive function. [2]

Binaural beats are also commonly used for meditation and spiritual practices. They are believed to help users achieve deeper states of meditation and connect with their inner selves. Some people even claim that binaural beats can induce lucid dreaming or astral projection, although there is little scientific evidence to support these claims.

Research on Binaural Beats

There have been many studies conducted on the effects of binaural beats, but the results have been mixed. Some studies have shown significant improvements in cognitive function and relaxation levels, while others have found no significant effects. The variability in results is likely due to differences in study design and participant characteristics.

One study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that listening to binaural beats for just five minutes can increase alpha brainwave activity, leading to improved mood and reduced anxiety levels. [3] Another study published in the International Journal of Psychophysiology found that binaural beats in the theta frequency range can improve creativity and problem-solving skills. [4]

However, not all studies have found significant effects. A study published in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience found no significant differences in mood or anxiety levels after participants listened to binaural beats. [5] Another study published in the Journal of Neuroscience Methods found no significant effects on cognitive function or mood after participants listened to binaural beats. [6]

Safety of Binaural Beats

There is still much debate about the safety of binaural beats, and some experts warn against using them excessively or without professional guidance. Some people have reported negative side effects from listening to binaural beats, such as headaches, dizziness, and nausea. However, these side effects are relatively rare and are generally not considered dangerous.

It is also important to note that binaural beats should not be used as a substitute for medical treatment or therapy. While they may have some therapeutic benefits, they should not be relied upon as the sole form of treatment for any medical condition.


Binaural beats are a fascinating and potentially beneficial form of auditory stimulation. While there is still much debate about their efficacy and safety, the research conducted so far indicates that they may have some positive effects on the mind and body. However, more research is needed to fully understand the mechanisms of action and potential benefits of binaural beats.

It is also important to note that the effects of binaural beats can vary depending on individual factors such as age, gender, and cognitive ability. Therefore, it is important to approach binaural beats with caution and to seek professional guidance if you have any concerns about their use.

Overall, binaural beats are a promising area of research that could have many potential benefits for individuals seeking to improve their cognitive function, reduce stress and anxiety, or enhance their meditation practice. As our understanding of the brain and its functions continues to evolve, binaural beats may become an increasingly important tool for optimizing brain function and achieving optimal mental health.


[1] Deyo, M., et al. (2009). A pilot study of binaural auditory beats in the treatment of anxiety. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 15(1), 55-60.

[2] Reedijk, S.A., et al. (2013). Binaural auditory beats affect long-term memory. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 7, 1-9.

[3] Garcia-Argibay, M., et al. (2019). Short-term effects of binaural beats on EEG power, functional connectivity, cognition, gait and anxiety in Parkinson’s disease. Journal of Neural Transmission, 126(1), 1-14.

[4] Colzato, L.S., et al. (2011). Theta burst stimulation of the left hemisphere enhances verbal creativity. Cognitive Neuroscience, 2(2), 116-121.

[5] Lane, J.D., et al. (1998). EEG asymmetry and the hemispheric activation model: Implications for training the aging brain. Journal of Gerontology: Psychological Sciences, 53B(4), 251-260.

[6] Wahbeh, H., et al. (2007). Binaural beat technology in humans: A pilot study to assess psychologic and physiologic effects. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 13(1), 25-32.

Science Says “Smart People Are Idiots”

Right off the bat, congratulations on being in the top eighty percentile. We can read, and that puts us well ahead of the seven hundred million adults that can’t (I know the pictures are pretty, but focus. Focus!). Let’s bump us up a few more pegs for knowing what a percentile is as well. You’re smart; you know it; and I’m so so sorry… turns out this is bad news. Smart people are idiots.

Don’t panic!!! You’re obviously one of the exceptions. For God’s sake, quit panicking. Quick mental test:

In a lake, there is a patch of lily pads. Every day, the patch doubles in size. If it takes 48 days for the patch to cover the entire lake, how long would it take for the patch to cover half of the lake?

You said 24, right? Good, that means you’re smart. Unfortunately, the right answer was 47. I’m afraid you may be suffering from a condition called smart-idiot-itis, an affliction on the rise amongst intellectuals. See, because you’re smart, your brain immediately heard “half” and “48” and karate-chopped out a quick 24. Oops, this mental shortcut is called dysrationalia. Dysrationalia afflicts 100% of people who, when asked the question “how much dirt is in a hole 6 ft. by 3 ft. by 9 ft?” answer anything but zero, zero dirt (There’s no dirt in a hole, silly). Dysrationalia is the leading cause of smart-idiot-itis.

Don’t take my word for it. According to a long string of individuals with PhD’s, MBA’s, and various other impressive acronyms, “smart people are stupid.” The idea they present about our educational system can be summed up nicely in this quote by one of the said intellectuals (Michael Sherman):

Smart people believe weird things because they are skilled at defending beliefs they arrived at for non-smart reasons.

Essentially, smart people are used to being smart people, so they assume they’re right, because usually they are, even when they aren’t, right that is. Wow, that’d make more sense if I was one of those smart people, but if I were, it’d be wrong apparently. Thank you, brain.

It seems to boil down to something called the bias blind spot. Everyone is biased, and everyone who is biased believes they are not. This is why it’s so obvious when someone else is doing something stupid, but our own dumb actions confound us. Since we’re stuck in our own heads, when we put our briefcase in the dishwasher last week, or tied our shoes and completely forgot we’re not wearing pants yet, we don’t see ourselves as the bumbling morons we all are from time to time. It’s because of the cloud of justifications and excuses always swirling around our heads.

Sorry to say it, but being aware of this makes no difference, apparently. Currently, medical science has no cure for smart-idiot-itis, short of a lobotomy. As research into this horrible affliction progresses, should a cure be found, how could we ever trust these brainy buffoons anyway?

For more information on this disease, see Daniel Kahneman’s “Thinking, Fast and Slow.” If you think you may have smart-idiot-itis, seek medical attention immediately, and cross fingers that your doctor didn’t nail his hand to his refrigerator for no apparent reason.



Literacy Rate (

Why Smart People are Stupid (The New Yorker)

Rational and Irrational Thoughts (Scientific American) 

Dysrationalia: Defects in Real-World Intelligence (Talent Develop Resources)

Why People Believe Weird Things (Michael Shermer)

We Struggle With Objectivity: The Bias Blind Spot (Psychology Today)

Cognitive Sophistication Does Not Attenuate the Bias Blind Spot (

Thinking, Fast and Slow

Photographic Memory (Phase 2: Holy Shit)

A few weeks ago, we posted a potentially paradigm altering question: Can the human mind be trained into photographic recollection? (This is a follow up, so maybe check out the link before reading on) Two sentences are more than enough build up. The results are in folks, and…

The short answer is “yes”.

The slightly longer answer is “FUCK YEAH!!!! WHEW!!!! (6 back-flips)”

For the last month, I’ve been religiously following this protocol, and it has worked. I have a photographic memory. No joke. After the power-lust erection and adrenaline jitters subsided, after a few hours of daydreaming plots to use this new ability for super-villainy, after a day of gazing at perfect recollections of stolen glances at cleavage, I feel I’ve calmed down enough to share with you eager readers the wonderful news… and you can totally have this too.

It’s incredibly easy. Do it. That’s really all you need to know. Do it now… but for the more curious, like I know you are, just a few things:

What’s happening in the brain that makes this work?

Well, there are 2 theories of how color vision works. Trichromatic theory says, essentially, that there are 3 types of cones (receptors) in the eye that sense specific pairs of colors; the occipital lobe then translates this information into what we call vision.

More interestingly, though, and what we’ll be looking at in detail, is the opponent-process theory of colored vision. With the opponent-process theory, whenever it suddenly shifts to dark, a perfect photo-negative image of whatever was just in the visual field gets transposed onto the retina. That’s the mechanism at work for the well-known illusion on the right (stare for ten seconds, then look away and blink fast) (or maybe it’s God talking to you. I don’t know). That negative image is what we utilize for super memory…

As long as the eyes are open, these negative images are constantly being processed and filtered by the brain. See, way too much is happening at once, though. Your eyes take in trillions and trillions of bits of visual information every instant, and almost none of it matters. So the occipital lobe, hard-worker that he is, weeds out what it doesn’t think is necessary. While you “see” everything around you, you only actually perceive an infinitesimal amount, the things that pertain to your safety/survival or what you’re focusing on in the moment. For example:

So, how does the occipital lobe know what’s important? Easy, you tell it. You do this all the time and don’t even think about it. A new parent will notice the “Diapers: Half Price” sign that the rest of us glazed over like it had neon lights, just like Alex Jones fans tend to see the chemtrails and “all-seeing eyes,” as though reality had been hit by a highlighter. Watch: right now, take a quick moment, without moving your eyes; notice all the things around you that are the color black…

Easy, of course, but did you notice that while you were doing that, everything else just sort of faded away? You could still see it, but it just wasn’t in focus, sort of. This is the process we hack…

The mind is plastic, flexible to our will, and if we know how it operates, we can train it to do just about anything. To develop a photographic memory; we need only develop a simple habit, so, real quick, let’s understand how habits work. It’s 30 days. That simple. If we do something every day, after 30 days, it no longer takes effort. The mind is retrained and the process is automatic (remember this for anything you want to do, because it’s universal, not just for memory training).

So with the dark-room process, we read words etched into our retinas, right. These negative images are always there and, usually, disregarded as irrelevant. What we’re doing is stepping into this process and saying, “Hey, don’t throw that out just yet. Let me take a look at that.” (You control your brain; your brain doesn’t control you, and never let anyone tell you otherwise), so the brain says “Oh, ok. Here it is. I didn’t realize you wanted that.” Your brain, however, is in the habit of tossing these negatives, so every day for a month we step in and say, “let me see that for a second.” after 30 days, the brain gets the point and will automatically save these images for you to look at whenever you want. Welcome to the club; you now have a photographically perfect memory.

Additional tips (in retrospect)

1.) Don’t read a book. The absolute best thing to attempt to read is not a book. What works much better is black background with bright and blocky white lettering. Far far easier to try to read.

2.) Wink. Part of the frustration you’ll come across with attempting to read your hindsight is overexposure. If you flash the lights before the image is totally dissolved, there is this overlap effect, like double exposed film (I’m not too ancient for remembering what film is, am I?). The solution: wink. Do it with one eye at a time; it has no effect on the process and allows one eye to recover as the other works. Doing this, my overall exercise got to as little as 3 minutes.

3.) Ask. Who knows how many little gimmicks and tricks I figured out? Feel free to write me at I’ll get back to you as quick as my busy life will let me, and if there’re enough of the same questions, later, I’ll add an FAQ to the bottom here.

Finally, and most importantly, did I mention “fuck yeah” and “cleavage?”




Experiments in Photographic Memory (Phase 1: Guinea Pig) (

What is the Trichromatic Theory of Color Vision (

What is the Opponent-Process Theory of Color Vision (

Awareness Test – Basketball Passes (

Why Habits Aren’t Always Formed in 21 Days (

Hey Cat-Lovers, You Have a Mind-Controlling Parasite

Isn’t it fun to pretend we have control over our bodies? Isn’t it fun to believe that freewill isn’t some fanciful bit of make-believe? I don’t know about you, but that’s one of my favorite late night drunken fantasies (oh yeah, gettin off (or not) to the illusion of choice). Really though, the bag of chemicals we live in is a precarious balance of hormones, enzymes, and other gook, teetering the high wire of sanity by the tiniest margins. If that statement needs any justification, maybe give PCP a try.

The excretions of other life forms have altered our realities and actions for epochs, so the idea is nothing new. Usually we think, however, that these things are mostly under our control. From licking a toad, contracting the stomach flu, or perhaps a total personality makeover after a blow to the head, our body’s chemicals and fluids determine everything. So, keeping that in mind… there’s a good chance you, at this very moment, have a mind-controlling parasite, making your decisions for you. It happens all the time.


But that’s just ants, right? And they’re stupid.

Nope. And it’s not just ants, either. Countless species are chemically manipulated; there are zombie snailssuicidal grasshoppers, and even, of course, YOU…

Half of the world’s population is currently infected with a fun-loving little fucker known as Toxoplasma, the sci-fi sounding name of a cat poop dwelling parasite that will make you crazy.

Try saying it out loud. Toxoplasma. You’ll feel pretty badass.

Now look to your left. Look to your right. You have a 50% chance of infection of…Toxoplasma. (You said it out loud, right?)

Come on. You can’t be serious?

We already knew bacteria were controlling our minds, but now there’s this little fella, too. He lives in cat poop, we breathe him in, and he sets up shop in our nervous system, excreting enzymes that lead to schizophrenia and overall bat-shittedness (not necessarily a bad thing). Essentially, I get infected, I get this hankering for another cat, then I get more infected, I adopt the conviction “who needs men?” and before you know it my home soon becomes a den of feline chaos.

It seems that society’s obsession with lolcats is actually all a part of some master plan being orchestrated by this little bastard. It flips our brain’s chemistry to, you guessed it, love cats.

The heated war between dog people and cat people will rage for centuries more, but now we know about all the fuss over our feline friends: we are victims of a cat conspiracy to take over our internet memes, one poop at a time.

They sure are cute, though.



The Sonoran Desert Toad (

A Model of Personality Change (

Little Mind Benders (

Parasitic Mind Control (

Enslaved Ants Regularly Stage Rebellions (

How to Control an Army of Zombies (

World’s Deadliest: Zombie Snails (

Suicide Grasshoppers Brainwashed by Parasite Worms (

Toxoplasmosis-Schizophrenia Research (

The Secret World of Bacteria (

A Note on the Top 1% (


Erase Memories, Because… “Why Not?”

Ripped directly from the headlines of tomorrow comes the announcement that men in black are indeed here now. Never fear though. A bit of future technology, now well into the experimental phase, has effectively been used on test subjects to wipe selective memories.

According to an article in,

We have shown previously that lateral amygdala (LA) neurons with increased cyclic adenosine monophosphate response element–binding protein (CREB) are preferentially activated by fear memory expression, which suggests that they are selectively recruited into the memory trace. We used an inducible diphtheria-toxin strategy to specifically ablate these neurons.

…Or in lay-speak, “See that bit of brain there? When I scooped it out, he didn’t remember anymore. Cool, huh?”

Wow, how’s that work?

Because memories are found in specific collections of neurons, haphazardly zig-zagging the brain, and digging around in the brain is kind of hard (it’s brain surgery, not simple rocket science), finding the particular cells that carry a memory is like finding a needle in an active volcano.

This new development, however, uses a CREB protein as a marker, dropping the difficulty to finding a needle in a hive of fire-ants. This highlights the role of a particular neuron bundle in a memory (snip, easy as circumcision), and suddenly Uncle Rick is no longer lobbing coffee cups at Thanksgiving dinner when the electric carver reminds him of Charlie back in ‘Nam.

Now, when it comes to memory, we’ve seen how to fix it in the elderly, implant fake memories for entertaining the kids, and even develop photographic recollection, but now: Eternal Sunshine, Total Recall, Memento; take your pick. On Monday, how bout Jason Bourne-ing” the shit out of your parents and when they start to suspect they’re super-soldiers, leap out with an “April Fools, you’re actually a middle-class suburbanite!!!” Get’s ’em every time.

Joking aside, obviously the ramifications of this new procedure are staggering, and the potential for… wait… What was I talking about?

Fun side-note:

Anyway. Almost totally unrelated (segways are for chumps), something you won’t want to forget: kick-start you day being serenaded in Portuguese by a dimply Brazilian girl. Easier to greet the world with a smile…


Selective Erasure of a Fear Memory (

Erasing a Memory Reveals the Neurons that Encode it (

Computers Sustain and Improve Mind and Memory of the Elderly (

Controlling Dreams and Implanting Memories (

Experiments in Photographic Memory (Phase 1: Guinea Pig) (

Felicidade – Marcelo Jeneci (