The Training of the senses for Peak Performance
3 questions and 3 answers
How do you train the senses? Whish senses are you referring to? What does this have to do with peak performance?
- You train the senses just like you train your muscles or any other faculty or sense; by actively engaging them – by using them. You can train one at a time two, or all simultaneously.
- We start with the 5 basic physical senses: auditory, touch, sight, smell, taste. Then we can add more to the mix – my personal favourite toppings are: sense of motion (kinesthetic sense) and sense of emotion – these last two senses are the ones that generate the dance expression.
- My definition of peak performance is the full use simultaneously of all seven of the above senses. This was my experience as a dancer. Top athletes have a similar describe a similar experience when they are performing at the highest level. This is Peak Experience or being in the Flow or the Zone – it is described as seeing everything in slow motion, or going out of body and seeing everything from above. Many athletes describe their experience in this manner from Joe Montana (football) Mike Tyson (boxing) Wayne Gretzky (hockey) Michael Jordan (basketball)
There is a way to train the senses to achieve this state of peak performance in any activity at any time. Once you have tasted this delight you will be easily motivated to continue training without needing to push yourself. The training can quickly be ingrained and you can access it any time you wish. Even when you are sitting in your desk as I am right now peak performance is accessible and it can be focused on none physical activity even on what I call “peak experience thinking”.
Marshall McLuhan the great media philosopher and analyst described the training of the senses as a means to regain our sense of balance from the overuse of one sense (our eyeballs to experience reality) ever since the invention of the television. During the last 60 years this overuse of one sense has accelerated to the point where people are not even looking at each other they are constantly down gazing into their devices. Some people even text each other while sitting next to each other.
McLuhan saw this as a very dangerous trend because the focusing on one sense can easily lead to a population that can easily be hypnotized into making wrong choices not only on which products to buy but more dangerously which leaders to vote for.
McLuhan wrote this in 60s because he saw the danger of another Hitler like leader coming to power. Hitler and his propagandists focused on the auditory (radio) and visual senses (mass rallies) to hypnotize the German people and manipulate their support; some would call it brainwashing. It is a very effective way to replace the choices and viewpoints of the masses collectively through one medium.
He even went so far as to suggest banning certain media like television for periods of time (the weekends) so we can regain our senses and also began developing an educational curriculum to train the senses of the young as an antidote to television and computers.
Here is one antidote exercise for this negative effect on the nervous system. Try this: while reading this text on your screen, use your peripheral vision to also be aware of your environment. Do not erase from your vision your environment by focusing only on your screen and excluding all other physical objects around you. This is the first lesson in traininig of the senses. Practice this everywhere and with everybody. Walking down the street try to see everyhting at once. Achieve panoramic vision and take the first step on the road to peak experience.
There was one culture that was the undisputed leader in the training of the senses not only for individuals but also as a culture and society as a whole. They provided the most advanced example of training of the senses that is still relevant today.
If you are interested in experiencing this state of peak performance in your daily life I can show you how. You only have to do it once and then you will now it forever. You will not have the need to be trained again. Or come back for a refresher course because it only worked for a short time. The skill you gain from training of the senses will never wear out will never dissipate – will never go away. This skill will become your best friend at times of need, it will become your best companion in times of loneliness and it will become you – fully you.
It will lead you into areas that you always wanted to explore within yourself and out into the world without fear or doubt in your heart.
I know of one such culture that perfected this art and this is the culture that I will use as an example.
This video series will explain the physical training principles of the ancient Ionian inspired Hellenic warriors and athletes later we will get into the training of the senses:
TRAINING AVAILABLE VIA SKYPE OR ZOOM. Contact Athan at firstname.lastname@example.org
I found the following video a very close representation of my own method.
So why reinvent the wheel? Do this everyday and you will begin to sense the
strength and endurance required to be fully functional human being.
Consult your doctor, healthcare practitioner, or trainer, before you begin a new
exercise program. Above all use your common sense. The purpose is to
become stronger and more resilient. Do as much as you feel comfortable
and stop. Tomorrow you can attempt to go a little bit longer.