Episode 154

Ariel Garten - Your Brain on Meditation

Ariel Garten is the co-founder of Muse, the brain sensing headband that gives you feedback as you meditate. She has an amazing background in neuroscience, psychotherapy, and art. Ariel shares her personal story and why she created a neurotechnology tool that helps you understand what’s going on inside your brain while you’re meditating.

In this episode:

“I would like to think that we are incredibly unique and all have a range of experiences that shape us and we are all beautiful in those amazing ways.”

“Meditation, as amazing as it is, is not helpful if you don’t do it regularly.”

“Meditation is not about letting your mind go blank. Meditation is about focusing your attention.”

“You learn not to get pulled away by your distractions, and you learn to be able to sit with the thing that’s in front of you that you want to accomplish.”

“You really change the relationship of your physiological experiences, so that all those things that keep you from the ‘flow’ state...they become moments that come and go.”

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  • Using Muse can help you initiate a flow state, as well as increase your meditation muscles with daily use. 
  • Depending on your skill level, you will use Muse differently. If beginner though, try to hit 10 minutes a day at least. This seems to be the sweet spot (10-20 minutes).
  • Meditation strengthens prefrontal cortex (for planning), helps regulate amygdala (think fight-or-flight system), decreases the Default Mode Network (internal dialogue and autopilot functions) widens Corpus Callosum (bridge between hemispheres) and makes gray matter more dense (stronger cognition).
  • Meditation is all about focused attention.
  •  The act of meditation will help you manage the emotional experiences of your life.
  • There is no magic number for amount of time to meditate every day. The most important part is to do it every day if you can.
  • Technology should serve a function and enhance our lives if possible. 
  • Make sure to recognize the values of your family or loved ones during times of conflict. Meditation helps with that by letting you stop, pause, and then think about things while times are tough.