Eyes Wide Open, Super High Scores!



I stumbled across something interesting. I’m hoping someone with a neuroscience background can tell me what might be going on. I’m a regular Muse/Calm app user.

First, some background.
I’ve been musing regularly for about 4.5 months. I’m blind, and have been blind since birth. (totally blind, born premature). I mention that in case it has any bearing on the following.

The other day, I reached up to flick some sleep gunk out of my eye during a morning Muse session with the Calm app, and noticed that my calm score went up, a couple birds tweeted etc.

Further investigation showed that lightly touching my eyes directly only created lots of noise and “active” scores. However, and this is where it gets weird…

When I gently place fingers either side of my nose, pulling down so my eyes are held WIDE open, and try not to blink too much and keep breathing, my scores go through the roof! Such as 99% for this 5 minute session:

100% for this 7 minute session:

and still 94% for this 12-minute session:

So, what the heck is going on? I imagine that what I’m doing is causing some sort of visual cortex activation, not to mention holding this odd position causes me to focus more than I normally would. This weird but repeatable trick makes me wonder what the Calm algorithm is looking for when it scores a high “calm” percentage. I get near perfect and constant birds doing this.

I’m hoping at least one other person here tries this, to see if it’s just some quirk particular to me or not.

Again, gently rest fingers either side of your nose, and pull down, which forces the eyes to stay open. Try to stay still and don’t blink a lot as this causes lots of noise.