If people started having normal conversations, casual discussions at work, or chats among old friends to discuss brain states, it could be quite disorienting.

In a way, brain states are simple enough. We're talking physiology here. The brain triggers a wire that puts a particular brain area in charge, commensurate with the perceived stress level. The state is lower in the brain if we're stressed out than it would be if we were cool as a cucumber. The process is automatic, nearly constantly in action, as it increases our chances of survival.

Do I own my state or does my state own me?

Also, I understand that by using emotional tools in particular ways, we can rapidly switch brain states, but here is the problem: when I'm in a particular brain state, I AM THAT STATE. I believe that is how the world is - objectively. There is no confusing me with neocortical dictates. Here is where having conversations with people who do not know about brain states becomes rather frightening.

They think that people are a certain way, such as, "He is really rude," or, "She is so nice." When the wicked stress hormones surge enough, everyone on the planet is rude, or, at the very least, we freeze and have nothing to say or do at all. Even the most frightening convict in our nearby neighborhood prison, San Quentin, can ooze compassion when in a low-stress state of neural connection.

Given that truth, that makes our power to rapidly switch brain states (in its finest rendition, using the Cycle Tool) magical. One minute we are grounded in our bodies, and the next we are transported. For example, I had a major fight with my computer today. I was multi-tasking, writing an article for an online scientific journal, taping a video tour of our member homepage, and uploading videos with our new brain graphic (see below).

A different brain area is in charge based on our level of perceived stress. 

All three endeavors were complete failures, in fact, they all went so badly that, after 24 hours of computer freezes . . . well, that says it all, except I had "freezes" in every project every step of the way, and now I am worse off than I was when I arose this morning. Except for a pattern of magical moments.

One quick spiral up makes my day

One of those magical moments was when my friend Pam called and said she was moving to Michigan to take a job in university athletics. I was way too busy to talk, but I took a deep breath, spiraled up from 4.5 to a high 1 state, and felt a wave of gratitude for her. At 4.5, gratitude would have been impossible to find.

Just the way anything really important is impossible to explain, I have no words for the experience of that magical switch up from stress to joy. I just know that while it is not logical, it is real!

I challenge you to see the five people who are within you, and love all of them, even the ones that are irritating or not nice. Even more, do a Cycle and spiral up to a bright, shiny Brain State 1.

Now . . . can you put that experience into words? If so, please find a way to chat with someone in "normal" conversation to share your experience.

Now the tedious, frustrating nature of the day is passing. Just saying that switched my brain state. Now I'm that loving version of Laurel, the one that gives unconditional love with ease. I like that Laurel. Of course, I love and accept the other four versions of me, but this one feels so much better!

Now I'm at One, and I like that. It's the glow of it that makes me smile, but what makes me happy is that even at this stage of life, experiencing myself changing my brain state on a whim makes me believe there are so many mysteries I have yet to discover!

That's one of the reasons I love EBT. It is MAGICAL!