A month ago I bought a portable emWave2 device from the Heartmath institute. It is advanced technology to measure your heart coherence. This emWave2 device is not only capable of measuring your current state of being by measuring your heart beat rhythm with an ear sensor, but also contains several programs to reduce your stress level and stimulate positive feelings. When you have a low heart coherence, you are likely to experience negative emotions and stress. But when you have a high heart coherence, you will experience a state of being with a balance between emotions, mind and body. In this state of being you experience long term positive feelings.
Breathing exercises are used to reduce stress for many thousand years. I have already many years of experience with breathing exercises in different domains, e.g., in martial arts, sports and meditation, which helped me tremendously to reduce stress and experience more positive feelings. However, the Heartmath technique seems to be a more advanced technique. This technique is called the ‘Fast Coherence Technique’ and allows you to get out of the spiral of negative emotions and enter a more positive and effective emotional state in a faster way.
The technique requires that you learn to focus on your heart and activate or recall a positive feeling. The emWave2 devices allow to use the ’Fast Coherence Technique’ to transform your feelings and not only your thoughts. If you have more positive feelings, your thoughts will be more positive, too.
More than 16 years research of Heartmath has demonstrated the important role of the heart in transforming emotions and behaviour. The most important reason is that the power of mind and breathing techniques only are not enough to conquer emotional stress, negative emotions and behaviour.
The Fast Coherence Technique
This three step techniqe can be used with or without the emWave2 device:
1. Focus on your heart
Focus your attention to your heart area in the middle of your chest.
2. Breath through your heart
While you focus on your heart area, imagine that you are breathing in and out via your heart.
3. Feel your heart
Keep imagining that you are breathing through your heart and recall a positive feeling from your past, e.g., a moment you felt happy and try to revive this moment in your mind. It can be the feeling of appreciation or gratitude for somebody, a pet, a special place or an activity which brought you pleasure. Allow yourself to completely revive the moment in your mind. If this is not working for you, you can also just activate a positive feeling. That will work, too.
How does the emWave2 device work?
The principle of the emWave2 device is that your heartbeat measures your emotional state.
If you have positive feelings, such as gratefulness, love and happiness you will have a coherent, ordered heartbeat pattern.
If you have negative feelings such as stress, fear and anger you will have an incoherent, non ordered heartbeat pattern.
3 states of Heart Coherence
The device has 3 states of heart coherence:
1) Low Heart Coherence ( Red )
2) Average Heart Coherence ( Blue)
3) High Heart Coherence ( Green)
The goal of working with the emWave2 is to get as long as possible in the high coherence ( Green ) and as less as possible in low coherence ( Red ). For every emWave2 session, there is an overview provided with the heartbeat rythm pattern, the coherency ratios ( percent of time in high, middle and low coherence over the session) and the cumulative coherence score.
The Cumulative Coherence Score
The Cumulative Coherence Score are the total number of points earned during the session. For every 5 seconds a score is given:
+1: Middle Coherence ( Blue)
+2: High Coherence ( Green )
-2: Low Coherence ( Red)
My plan is to reach at least 100 points for 1 daily session and to reach at least 200 points at least once in a week.
My first week’s results
After one week of using this 2 times a day, I have the first results. They were not so good as expected. This little device gives immediate feedback about my current situation. It does not lie. There are 4 levels of difficulty. I started with the lowest level and the idea is to go to the next level at the moment I can do sessions with a heart coherence of a steady >80%. After one week it is only >50%, so I expect that it will take several weeks of exercise before I’ll get a steady >80% score.
One session diagram
This session diagram is a typical result for last week. I manage to get a high coherence for 54% of the time and an average coherence of 26 % of the time. My Accumulated Score was just above 120, which was a good result.
Overview of last week
I did 2 sessions a day: one in the morning and one in the evening. Green is around 50% with just a little bit blue. That reflects my experience that I could go rather easy to high coherence once I got in average coherence. It is also clear that there were some stressful days with low coherence. ( see the red bars)
Although I can increase my heart coherence most of the time, I cannot do it at will yet. That will take more exercise.
During the last weeks I experienced a higher stress level than usual for 2 reasons. The first is that I’m in the middle of a stressful situation at work. The second is that I’m in the middle of the preparation for three weeks holiday with Linda. The first week we go to Latvia to prepare our wedding. After that we go for two weeks for a very exciting trip to South Africa, which includes a 3 day ‘Master Planning for Life’ seminar with Dr Demartini. ( Yes, yes, it is still my favorite personal development teacher) This is all very exciting, but at the moment it’s stressful as it requires a lot of planning time.
I expect that my Coherence Scores will increase while being on holiday. That would be great
- the 10 days mental challenge – the 10 lessons
- Think with you heart
- The 8 gratitude questions - seven evenings challenge (Day after) – the 8 lessons
- How to change your perspective to balance your emotions