Altered States of Consciousness for Translators

Yoga Meditation Pos-410px

Translators often work while in altered states of consciousness, be it "the zone", "flow", or "alpha state". This is a state of lessened distraction and heightened creativity. The more intuitive side of one's intelligent takes precedence over the more analytical one. Supposedly, this more conducive state of mind can be measured using electroencephalography (EEG), and it's one of four states:

the aforementioned state of translator's bliss
normal conscious awareness in adults
shallow sleep
deep sleep

You're probably in the beta state right now. So how to get into the hyper-productive alpha state? Here are some ways that work for me:

  • Stay up really late or get up really early, since supposedly alpha is a transitional state between wakefulness and sleep
  • Close your eyes and see yourself in such a state, since autosuggestion works wonders
  • Take on a rush job, since the sense of urgency will block out all distraction, at least for me
  • Try some experimental methods like binaural beats!

Binaural Beats

Here, you wear regular stereo headphones when translating and play a special audio file that has each headphone put out vibrations that combine to create a certain frequency, e.g. that of the alpha state. The idea is that the brain will become entrained by these sounds and try to match your brainwave frequency to them. Far out.

I've just tried it myself and found myself really zoning in on my work with little distraction. Here is an affiliate link to where I downloaded free samples. Disclosure: this company may pay me if you eventually buy their products after following this link. Now that I got that off my chest:

Do you translate while in altered states of consciousness? How do you get into alpha?