Neurofeedback Case Study written by NYC Therapist Heather Coleman, LCSW & Certified NeurOptimal Neurofeedback Trainer
“When I joined Neurofeedback Training Co. in NYC as a trainer and psychotherapist, I was curious to see how doing the neurofeedback on myself would affect me. After using neurofeedback for a year, I clearly notice these qualitative shifts that others have often described; I find that I sleep straight through the night without waking up, that I feel more clear and focused, it is easier to make decisions, and even my sense perceptions pick up on more details. However, the most persistent, change I’ve noticed over the year is that I am much less stuck in negative thought patterns.
I usually have a soundtrack playing in my head that offers it’s favorite hits: “I can’t believe you just said/did that! What were you thinking?” “Oh no, balancing budgets, you’re no good at that! Let’s just skip that today.” “I can’t believe my to-do list has gotten this long, I don’t even know where to begin!” “You’re never going to get better at ______, that’s just the way it is.” Sometimes my thoughts were even just garbled, but had an ominous tone. It seems as though instead of doing, I was just doing a lot of thinking about doing. In my work and life there has always been a steep learning curve. I am the kind of person that wants to know everything all at once and be an expert at something by tomorrow. Emotionally, this also comes with a lot of anxiety and a little bit (or sometimes a lot) of self-criticism.
With neurofeedback, as the nervous system comes into regulation, the waves and spikes of the brain are less extreme, similarly to how a wild ocean would smooth into still waters. I would notice after a session that my chatter had a quieter volume, and because of that, the tone felt less heavy emotionally. Since a lot of my energy was spent “spinning my wheels” about the quality of my work or freaking out about extensive to-do lists, I now feel clearer and more freed up to actually get the work done and meet each situation one-by-one without as much resistance.
Having been presented with a lot of new tasks this year and learning them from scratch, there was resistance to just simply doing the task. I had fearful inner conversations with myself about “doing it wrong” and the impossibility of ever learning to do it right! However, using neurofeedback on myself, I began to have more clarity about the task at hand and would literally justdo it without the useless inner struggle. I was able to attend to the client more freely, answer questions and accomplish the technical tasks simultaneously.
Overall, whenever I hook myself up to neurofeedback, I feel freer from negative patterns with a greater sense of playfulness and ease during the weeks I trained.Even people around me comment that I seem more productive, and more cheerful about life. I prefer feeling freer and lighter rather than weighed down by my counter-productive habitual patterns. In that sense, I am able to be attentive and more available to learning new tasks this year with a greater ease, which has had real life implications for my personal and professional growth.”
About Heather Coleman, LCSW
“As a psychotherapist I approach clients from a space of “basic sanity”, the innate wisdom each human being has been born with. By using traditional interventions from Western psychology and the ground of Buddhist philosophy, I facilitate a connection with my client’s basic goodness, natural wakefulness and health with the understanding that we are all capable of healing ourselves.” Learn more
Neurofeedback, Psychotherapy and Life Coaching with Neurofeedback (discuss life transitions, career, relationships, and discover options to aid in problem-solving and decision-making). Sessions are 50 minutes, $125/session
Manhattan Location: 80 E 11Th St., Suite 310, New York, NY 10003