NOTE TO VISITORS FROM LEARNING BREAKTHROUGH’S SITE: We’ve stopped using this program and you might want to read my June 9, 2008 Final Update on Learning Breakthrough here to find out why.
It’s been a hair over two months since my 12 year old son and I began the brain hacking with the Learning Breakthrough system and I’d promised you an update.
Both my son and I experienced a giddy, major initial boost when we began. If you’ve ever been sedentary for a time, gone out for an exercise session and come back tired but alert, refreshed and eager to continue, you’ll have a sense of what we experienced in the beginning. But just like exercise, it soon becomes something you either relish and look forward to…or start to dread doing.
For weeks Alex was eager. I was so eager and committed that I started packing the balance board and bean bags to take on my trips (four so far) and I’m performing the exercises in hotel bathrooms (tile floor is necessary). I even ripped the DVD to have it on my laptop to ensure I’m doing all the activities. We’re both in a phase now where the twice daily sessions are a motivation challenge, but I’m hyper-committed to go the distance (12-15 months) and will do it right alongside Alex since we’re both experiencing increasing benefits and this is likely to be life-changing for my little guy.
So what are those increasing benefits?
Alex’s concentration is discernibly better. Perfect? Not by a long shot. We’ve also noted some increase in maturity level which, unfortunately, broke down completely when we left this past weekend for Arizona and his older sister watched over him. He defaulted to old behavior either skipping some sessions or hurrying through them. He stayed up late and slept till Noon. He also was a load, laying around for hours goofing off knowing he had studying to do. As of our return on Monday, we’re back on track and I’m downstairs with him for each session.
We ask him often how he feels and Alex reports significant changes. “Focus is better,” “I feel great,” “my balance is better”.
It’s easier to track changes in myself vs. Alex as I tend to be hyper-observational about changes caused by Learning Breakthrough that wouldn’t be likely attributable to any other variable.
I’ve always been a carbaholic and struggled with my weight. It’s gone up, down, up, down and up. I’ve had more than a decade of daily marathon-like running and weight lifting that thankfully is paying dividends as I age. Curiously, I’ve noticed fairly significant reductions in cravings for external stimulation from food (especially sugar or other carbs), caffeine or stimulant medications for my ADD. In fact, most afternoons when we all typically notice our blood sugar dropping and fatigue set in — and most of us grab a convenient, refreshing caffeinated beverage — I end up doing the Learning Breakthrough exercises in the early evening and am rejuvenated and thus don’t need them.
My concentration has increased. There is a feeling of inner mind strength (don’t know how else to describe it) that’s ensued resulting in additional confidence. My balance and motor coordination is considerably better and more attuned which makes me realize that this type of activity should be done with senior citizens or those participating in any sport requiring enhanced motor coordination.
That’s where we’re at after two months.
I’m in a dialogue with the president of Learning Breakthrough since it’s clear to me that they could use a service (paid for obviously) that would/could coach people through the process and be there to get people over the hump that Alex and I are experiencing right now.
I’m also intrigued with my conversations and interactions with Dr. Charles Parker who writes the excellent CorePsychBlog. He recommended Interactive Metronome and I’ve been investigating it. He has mentioned that perhaps layering approaches could be useful (the physical Learning Breakthrough with the neurofeedback exercises) but I struggle with how much time investment Alex is willing to make.
More to come…