Flow state during sleep and sampling
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    http://forum.biohack.me/discussion/1285/cognitive-enhancement-and-sleep-mod-vasoactive-intestinal-polypeptide
    This is a continuation of the discussion stated between meanderpaul, MTS and myself. We kinda were getting the thread off topic, so we are moving the discussion to here. Okay so we were talking about how ideas come to us when we are sleeping or in a peaceful place, I am thinking that this is flow state that we are all entering. The thing that has me stumped is why. Normally you have to be doing something to get into flow state, but here we are not doing anything. It seems like it is being triggered more than entered, again why? My thought is that there is some degree of safety in all the places that our flow state are triggered/entered in, as a result our guard goes down. Then that leads to the question of why does this matter, why is it that we must be feel so safe to get so relaxed. My alternative theory is that we are awake, yet in the mind we are still asleep. The second one I don't even know if it is possible, does anyone hear know much about psychology and brain function. Also anyone else who has had similar experiences, you feel comfortable I would like to request that you would state any external factors. Such as but not limited to dyslexia, autism, and any other abnormality in how you think. I personally have dyslexia, so I am think there may also be a link there. The only way to prove any of this is to increase the sample size. Thank you in advance for your understanding and input.

    Sincerely,
    John Doe
  • thewinterwowerthewinterwower January 2016
    This sounds kind of similar to hypnogogia to me. Hypnogogia is the state of consciousness between awake and asleep, and can cause hallucinations in some cases and typically gives the person a lot of creative ideas.
    People like Edison and Tesla supposedly would get some of their ideas from this state. In the other thread it was mentioned that Edison and Dali would hold something in their hand, and if they doze off they would drop it and it would wake them back up. That's most likely because they were trying to achieve this state of maximum creativity.

  • LukoLuko January 2016
    I've read some stuff about Ambien (zolpidem) which is a sleep drug used to treat insomnia, and how while they are 'asleep' they go online and buy stuff or they clean their house, change their cars oil etc. Which i would guess is an an example of hypnogogia.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    @Luko
    Hum sounds like the potency of that needs to be dialed back....
    @thewinterwower
    Hum I still want to look for a trend to see if it is not more common one way or the other.
  • _mz_o___mz_o__ January 2016
    I definitely agree with you that these states are "triggered" rather than "entered" however I wouldn't necessarily directly attribute a flow-state to a sense of relaxation/safety, but rather a lack of external and/or internal stimuli.  For me personally, I find I work best/most creative after I've meditated, or when I'm slightly sleep deprived. I've had two experiences in a sensory deprivation tank, and for my second time I had taken a high dose of Oxiracetam. Once I had submerged and began to clear my mind, it almost felt like I was consciously witnessing memory consolidation; several internal conversations/problems I'd worked out and things I'd researched in the past few days were brought to the forefront of my attention and I actually came up with a few good ideas and had new conclusions/outlooks on what was "replayed". Also, sensory deprivation tanks are said to induce Theta/Delta brain rhythms, which is associated with sleep/meditation, which could possibly be further associated with "nodding."

    Outside of that subjective experience, my theory is that once we've satisfied our basic "lizard brain needs" (lowered internal stimuli) and relaxed (lowered external stimuli), our brains begin to exit the "problem-solving consciousness." What I'm really describing is the brain comparing/analyzing different thoughts and memories, and the conscious mind making sense of those seemingly random associations. Its not quite a flow-state, but definitely a facet of creativity IMO.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    @_mz_o__
    Could this be similar to a isolation tank, and it effects?
  • _mz_o___mz_o__ January 2016
    Yes, isolation / sensory deprivation / float tanks are all the same thing. Have you had any experience with them?
  • LukoLuko January 2016
    I haven't personally, but it would be really cool if someone could tell me where i could in Seattle WA.

    Thanks
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    @_mz_o__
    No I haven't been under in one but to build one is on the old (will not be done any time soon) todo list. I want to build waterproof EEG electrodes before I do that though.

    Sincerely,
    John Doe
  • MeanderpaulMeanderpaul January 2016
    I don't fully agree with you mz o (man your names hard to @) I don't think it's truly a lizard brain type of deal. Mine is when I hunt (can't get more basic brained). I constantly am looking and listening with all my attention when suddenly it pops in my head. I think it has more to do with the fact that there is such a closeness to the sleep stage more so.

    I could definitely see it possibly working with the tanks because you are "in your own head" so to speak.

    I have slightly experienced this while scuba diving where my mind will run wild with thought (along with the occasional "um I'm breathing underwater").
  • thewinterwowerthewinterwower January 2016
    @JohnDoe what do you mean by more common? I'm pretty sure almost everyone is capable of doing this.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    There has to be a tend to what's triggering them.... Then allowing for us to develop control over it....
  • thewinterwowerthewinterwower January 2016
    I feel like it would depend on the person. There's probably several ways to get it to trigger.

    Also, what exactly would you describe this "flow state" as? There are several communities who perform something called "void meditation", and the goal of the meditation is to completely eliminate all thought. They call it gnosis. And from what i've heard, with practice you can learn to trigger that whenever you feel like it.

    Although i don't think eliminating thought is the goal here. I'm just seeing some similarities between the two.
  • MeanderpaulMeanderpaul January 2016
    I think you need to figure go further down on what could cause it. What I mean instead of saying devoid/lots of stimulus say limited/focused or instead of saying it's at night say it's right on the cusp of sleep or right when you wake but haven't even opened your eyes yet but are awake enough to know your surroundings.

    It's going to need to be a specific detail not a big group type of trigger.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    @thewinterwower
    I define flow state as your point of peak learning and retention. My disire to control it is vary complicated, in my life I have these "highs" like the first time I went over 100miles per hour, the first time I sang with real ability, when I broke 200bpm to the 1/8's on my guitar. The motor reving the resonance shifting from my belly to my head feeling the strings between my fingers and my guitar, the summersaults my stomach did when Achieved all of these things. That sole feeling of the world beneath you feet, that's what I want, that's what I chase.

    @Meanderpaul
    I agree but something in the brain is getting triggered or as @thewinterwower suggested maybe turned off. And if we look at what's triggering it may be we can see a trend like sounds of nature or silence. I am thinking right now that ambient noise may have something to do with it.
  • thewinterwowerthewinterwower January 2016
    Maybe the best idea is generate a list of triggers for it. I do think something is being turned off in the brain, and therefore triggering it.

    I will agree that when i listen to ambient-esque music (which i listen to relatively frequently), i do feel slightly different and more "aware" i guess of my environment. I do have to let myself get absorbed in the music though. That's part of the reason i think this is somewhat similar to what i mentioned earlier about meditation/gnosis.

    In the case of driving over 100mph, and breaking 200bpm on guitar, i would assume thats an adrenaline rush. Are you wanting to be able to trigger an adrenaline rush at will?
  • thewinterwowerthewinterwower January 2016
    I'm pretty interested in meditation and the "magic" associated with it. I can provide links for it, even though it's somewhat out of the realm of biohacking.

    Although this good source i've found compared it with brain hacking, so i guess its not COMPLETELY out of the realm of biohacking because you're forcefully changing the way your using your brain.
  • MeanderpaulMeanderpaul January 2016
    @johndoe would you say you were much more focused when you were doing those things? The 100mph and 200bpm. Perhaps creating a high level of focus and introducing a subject would be a way to trigger it?

    Example: me listening and watching for a deer holding my bow and then coming up with a new arrow rest design. (Sorry for the hunting references I know it can upset people but it's mostly what I got.)
  • thewinterwowerthewinterwower January 2016
    If we're going for relaxed but focused and sparking up with ideas, showers are actually a really good example of a trigger. Meditating can do that sometimes too.

    So, lets generate a list of triggers now?
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    Okay I am on bored. For me let me start with
    Fear
    Anger(I have shakey hands and my hands are at there most steady when I am pissed off)
    Speed
    Being awoken from a deep sleep rapidly
    Listening to music to make my self fall asleep.
    Experimenting with scales and keys that "say it".
    Silence

    That's all I can think of for now.

    Sincerely,
    John Doe
  • MeanderpaulMeanderpaul January 2016
    @johndoe those should be broken down further I'm pretty certain you will find a common thing between them. Because being woken from a deep sleep doesn't work for me it needs more specific trigger.

    when I rode my motorcycle I would say speed was what I wanted but the actual thing I wanted was the adrenaline rush. Which means a motorcycle wouldn't be the only way to accomplish that.
  • LukoLuko January 2016
    I find that night time drives with the music turned up does it for me.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    Let's start with saying music triggers it through all of us.... Post more later.
  • MeanderpaulMeanderpaul January 2016
    I can't say that cause music doesn't do it for me
  • MeanderpaulMeanderpaul January 2016
    What I would like to try is smelling salts in the morning when I wake up and dive into a project. Smelling salts not only wake up an unconscious person but can also make you focus more when awake.
  • LukoLuko January 2016
    Intense measures of emotion can also trigger a flow state for me. Anger, Depression, Extreme nervousness, hapiness.
  • shrbly_exeshrbly_exe January 2016
    @Meanderpaul
    Bath salts?
  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight January 2016
    No. Smelling salts are basically ammonium carbonate. They release ammonia gas when mixed with water, which'll wake you up by acting as an irritant to the sympathetic nervous system, the lungs, and the nose.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    @meanderpaul
    What brand of salts do you use use and I will experiment.
  • MeanderpaulMeanderpaul January 2016
    I do not have any right now. I was using what my buddy had. I will be getting some shortly though.

    @shrbly_exe no not bath salts
  • thewinterwowerthewinterwower January 2016
    I personally can't get into flow states through anger, fear, nervousness, etc. although depression and maybe happiness do work. I haven't tried deep sleep.

    Only certain kinds of music are triggers for me, like if its progressive/ambient to some degree. @Meanderpaul what kinds of music have you tried listening to to trigger it? It could be because of what you're listening to.

    Night time drives with music will get me there just like @Luko speed does not matter. Its probably because of the ambiance and stimuli from the environment (dark, with sounds that are probably relaxing)

    Once again, i still think speed gives an adrenaline rush and is not the flow state we're looking for. Your body is amping up to prepare itself for fight/flight if something goes wrong.

    I'd like to add that i can achieve it if im doing a somewhat mindless task, like stocking a shelf at work. I kind of consider driving as a mindless task also, since you don't really have to think about what you're doing to control the car.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    Hum I am guessing that maybe a lack of a challenge could be playing a part into it. I may try and substitute ambient noise I am around at times, for example putting in ear plugs as apposed to listening to scremo in my math class. I have a pair of ear plugs that I can hear my heart beat if I get them in just right, I am wondering if I can't get into a altered state of mind through focusing on that. Please note that I did not say flow state I said altered state of mind. Even if it is not the one for the end game a semi-controlled controlled change in the mind is progress, and more importantly repeatable for about $5.

    Sincerely,
    John Doe
  • MeanderpaulMeanderpaul January 2016
    I doubt it's a music choice by me that is effecting it. Just short of rap and classical I listen to it all. Oh and the edm stuff just makes me angry.

    Mostly rock 90s - 2007ish and country.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    Wait what? EDM piss's you off? Dude THAT could be huge. Dame I wish I could hook you up to a EEG. I say that because it show a stimulus can alter your state of mind, granted this has been suggested, but to my knowledge never proven.

    Sincerely,
    John Doe
  • thewinterwowerthewinterwower January 2016
    @johndoe Yes, it will get you into an altered state. That's basically equivalent to meditating and focusing on breath. Your body will probably start feeling light and your mind will probably start racing making it harder to focus on your heartbeat.

    @meanderpaul Rock is a very active genre of music, there's a lot of different sounds reaching your body at the same time. I suggest trying to listen to classical music or another genre while working or something and see if you can notice any difference. Im not a huge fan of edm myself so i understand that much.
    Basically just try to find music thats not distracting (like rock), but not so dull its almost like it isnt there. I like this band called Earth, if you'd like to try triggering flow state by listening to them i suggesting listening to the album called Angels of Darkness Demons of Light. It is a bit slow though, its in a genre called drone metal.

    Now that i think about it music volume could play a role in triggering flow state too.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    I would turn it the point of ware you would strain to hear it, but not to much I feel that is more a trial and error thing.
  • thewinterwowerthewinterwower January 2016
    Im not sure if you would want to strain to hear it. I feel like you should be able to hear it but it shouldnt overwhelm everything.

    You're right though, it is definitely a trial and error thing we'll have to work out.

  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    I am going to experiment with both of these tomorrow. I will report back, what about you?
  • MeanderpaulMeanderpaul January 2016
    My point was I'm not overly picky over music choice and I'm not one of the people who blast it in a car. The only stuff with any sort of relaxing nature that I can tolerate listening to is country. Which I usually play regularly.
  • LukoLuko January 2016
    I am betting that it has to do with tone because I already know that some tones aggravate or irritate people. I don't really listen to rock but chillstep calms me down and most if the tones are low or percussion.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    Yes your right the tones are what we are reacting to. To some degree writing music is like sculpting something you can't see smell or touch. If you look at how glam metal of the 80's was written compared to how we are writing now you see that the lower frequencies are stressed more than they were 30 years ago. Guitar players are not going as high as the used to and singers are the same way, I can't tell you how many singers go through hell to sing those and hardly ever use them. Truly I don't know what else to say until I have EEG reports to post.
  • TheGreyKnightTheGreyKnight January 2016
    I've done some experiments over the years with binaural beats and the effects of various tones and harmonies on mood and the actual physical state of an individual. Frequency(tone), without a doubt, has a profound effect on someone's psychology. Rhythm(percussion) is a separate entity, but it is by no means less important in creating non-standard states of consciousness.


    Would you all say that the music and environments(where sound is present) that usually trigger flow for you have a lot of higher frequency tones, that aren't shrill or dissonant(link)?
  • MeanderpaulMeanderpaul January 2016
    I personally have no connection to the music.
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    Hum I know what I need to do now I just can't do it till all my parts are in. I will play music that triggers flow state and once I have a base line established I can begin to train it.
  • LukoLuko January 2016
    I've got some really nice headphones I could use for tone experimenting noise cancelling bass boost etc...
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    Yes but the catch is that we need to prove we are in a flow state, which requires a EEG.... Which dame Amazon has not sent me all the same parts to yet, those dumb ass's.
  • LukoLuko January 2016
    @JohnDoe Hey do you think that you could send me a parts list? I totally want to make one of these or buy one if that's suggested. Never made or bought one before.


    Thanks,

    Luko
  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    Have you ever soldered before? This project is not a good one to start with. If you have not then here is what I would recommend:
    https://www.olimex.com/Products/EEG/OpenEEG/
    Then pick one of these and make some electrodes:
    http://openeeg.sourceforge.net/doc/hw/electrodes/passive/
  • LukoLuko January 2016
    I saw this is this reasonable i honestly have no clue.



  • JohnDoeJohnDoe January 2016
    I what are you trying to do? If you are like me and you are trying to build a BCI than I doubt you will get the smart performance that you could from something you built or bought from any where else. But of you are just trying to prove that you goto flow state that would probably do just fine.

    Sincerely,
    John Doe
  • LukoLuko January 2016
    Thanks i'm just trying to prove that i am in a flow state.