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‘Brain gyms’ tone minds and reduce stress

Fun article in the San Francisco Examiner today on how High-tech ‘brain gyms’ tone minds, reduce stress. Quotes:

  • “SharpBrains and Posit Science are just two of a growing number of start-up companies leading the way in the area of packaging and developing suites of software they call “brain gyms.”
  • “SharpBrains offers a suite of products that evaluate buyers’ needs and target their weakness, gently pushing for improvement, Fernandez said. One program helps improve memory using a number game (here); another provides instant biofeedback to users so they can practice breathing and positive thinking to reduce stress (here), Fernandez said.”
  • “I can start seeing the changes in my stress level take place right in front of my eyes,” said Baba Shiv (profile here), a neuroscientist and professor at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, who uses Freeze-Framer 2.0 (here), one of the programs licensed by SharpBrains. By monitoring his stress level through heart monitors hooked to his personal computer at work, he discovered that constantly monitoring his e-mail inbox raised his stress level, Shiv said. Now he limits himself to checking e-mail every two hours, Shiv said.

The reporter did a great job in understanding and communicating a new and sometimes complex topic. Read the article: High-tech ‘brain gyms’ tone minds, reduce stress.

You can learn more about the research on self-control of our advisor Baba Shiv in The Frontal Cortex blog’s article Self-Control is a Muscle and in Mind Hacks: (un)emotional investment.

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