Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

I'd like to talk to someone over the phone about the book and/ or brain training program.

Sure, just email us and we'll follow up with a phone call. Send your email to
nickyv (at)

How do I order the book or ALERT
60-day brain training program?

You can order on this website, or mail in a check or money order.
Our mailing address is:

20 Minutes To Less Stress, LLC.
29 Smokehouse Drive. Simpsonville, SC 29681

Please include your name and address where you want the products shipped. Include your phone number or email to receive our confirmmation for your order.

To order by credit card, please use the order page on the website.

Can I telephone you and give my credit card info over the phone?

Sorry, but we don't have the capacity to take credit cards over the phone. (We try to keep our expenses and overhead low, so that we can pass the savings on to you.) If you'd like to talk to us over the telephone us, please email us with your contact information:

admin (at)

nickyv (at)

We didn't want to list our telephone number on this website because of telemarketers. However, we'd be happy to make plans for a telephone call.

Do you offer a 30-day money-back quarantee on the ALERT 60-day brain training program?

Yes, if you're not satisfied, you can return the ALERT to us within 30 days of purchase for a refund. Shipping and handling is not refunded. Mail the ALERT back to us at your own expense, when requesting a refund or repair. (Our address is listed above)

Do you have a warranty on the ALERT 60-day brain training program?

Yes, the control box, eyeglasses and headset are covered by a one-year warranty for parts and labor on all defects. If neccessary, we also have extra or replacement parts available for purchase at any time. Email us if you need assistance with your product or replacement parts.

I want to talk to my doctor about the ALERT. Do you have some information that I can share with him?

Yes, right click to download our PDF"Information for Your Doctor."

Where can I find the "Bubble Chart" to keep track of my ALERT sessions?

You can find it on the menu tab under "Free Downloads" or right click here to download the Bubble Chart.

How often can I use my ALERT "light and sound machine"? Can I do two sessions back to back?

We recommend that you use the ALERT at least once a day, for the first 60 days of the program. This is the minimum requirement. During this time, you may use the device more often, if you want to. That's up to you.

It's fine to do two sessions back to back, or repeat a session, if you want to.

Many customers enjoy doing the regular program in the morning and a relaxing Schumann session (check out session C1) in the afternoon or evening. You can also use the C1 session before going to sleep or run a session in the middle of the night if you have awoken but are having difficulty falling back to sleep.

"If I double up, and do two sessions a day, will I get results faster?

Not neccessarily. It is better to be consistent and keep a regular pace. Use the ALERT everyday to condition your brain for peak performance. Doubling up, and doing extra sessions will not help you get results faster. Don't stress yourself out with this program. Just relax and be consistent-- the results will come soon enough.

Should I keep my eyes open or closed? Should I stay awake or fall asleep during a session?

Actually, either way is fine. You can keep your eyes open or closed. However, we recommend that you close your eyes while using the ALERT so that you can relax deeply, and let go of stress and anxiety. One of the goals of the program is to relax a little deeper with each session.

To guage your progress with the program, we focus on six stages (or landmarks) that occur during deep relaxation. (This is based on the research of biofeedback practitioner Anna Wise, from her book Awakening the Mind, 2002)  

When you use the ALERT, you will gradually progress through these various stages. With your first ALERT session, you will probably be at stage zero or one. With each session, you will relax a little deeper and gradually progress to the next stage. After completing the ALERT program you will have reached stage six.

If you want to keep your eyes open, it is recommended that you purchase our special eyeglasses with "view holes." This eyeset is the same as the ALERT eyeglasses, but with view holes cut out so that you can see while you're doing a session. These eyesets are popular with athletes to use while exercising, and for students to use while reading or studying.

During the session, I sometimes fall asleep. Is that ok? Does the program still work if I fall asleep?

Yes, that is fine. The ALERT still works, even if you fall asleep. You don't have to be awake in order for the program to be effective. In fact, one of the intended outcomes of the program is that you learn to relax deeply and let go of stress. If you're falling asleep during a session, you're doing fine.

After using the ALERT, I still feel drowsy and want to sleep. Is it ok?

The ALERT will help you to relax so deeply that you may want to sleep for a while. Initially, you will feel sleepy or more tired than usual. If this happens, don’t be alarmed. The tension and stress has been stored in your body for a long time, and it's finally being released.

Are there any negative side effects?

Side effects are rare. While using the ALERT, some customers experience a quick shake of your hand, arm, leg, or foot. It’s the same thing that occasionally happens as you drift off to sleep. Again, this is simply the release of tension from the body. It’s a normal response and nothing to be concerned about. 

When you use the ALERT, you will probably drift off or fall asleep. Some people say it feels like you're going under an anesthetic. At the same time, you can be awake and aware of your surroundings. There is nothing to be afraid of.

What's the best time of the day to use the ALERT?

This is a question that we're asked all the time! It's really up to you. What you can do is experiment with different times to determine what's best for you. Here are some times that you might try:

• In the morning, before you start your day. You could try setting the alarm clock 30 minutes early. Put on your ALERT gear, and go back to sleep. You'll awaken refreshed and ready for the day.

• During the day, when you feel worn-out, overwhelmed, exhausted, or stressed out. (As a quick pick-me-up).

• After intense exercise. Nothing like a little ALERT session to re-charge your batteries and give you a boost of energy.

• Before working on a big project, or homework assignment. It helps take the edge off your anxiety, and energizes your brain to read, study or solve problems.

• Before a speech, presentation, or special meeting. Again, this is an instance where the ALERT will calm you down, and relax and stabilize your emotions

• Before you go to sleep, to help you settle down. (Try the ALERT sessions A1, A2, A3 or A4, or session C1 or C6. The rest of the ALERT sessions have an energizing effect, and may keep you awake)

• For insomnia and trouble sleeping asleep. (Again, try ALERT sessions A1, A2, A3 or A4,session C1 or C6. If you wanted to, you could try session C6 with relaxing music, guided narration, etc.)

Is it ok to use the ALERT before going to sleep?

Yes, but this may not be the best time for you. You may awaken after the session and be wide awake. Also, it is not recommended that you make a habit out of always doing your sessions before going to sleep. Experiment with some different times, and determine what suits you best.

Actually, there is a special session on the ALERT control box to help you sleep. It is session C-1. This is a soothing, quietting session that willl calm and relax you, so that you can drift off to sleep. That's one session that you can always use before you go to sleep. Or try session C6.

With the ALERT, does it make any difference whether you go through A1-A5 in sequence five times or is it better to go through one session five times?


The ALERT program suggests that you do one session at least five times before doing the next one. The reason for this is to “practice” the session—when you see and hear this rhythm, your brain is practicing it. It’s been said “practice makers perfect and repetition creates mastery.” So by doing the session five times you are practicing it until you master it. The next session is also a little more difficult than the previous one, so it’s good to master it before moving on to the next one. Each session builds upon what you learned in the previous session.

With the ALERT, can you skip around from A's to B's to C's - for variety, to keep interested?


It’s recommended that you listen to the sessions in sequence for the first 60 days, and then you can skip around to any session you like. Again, the reasons for this is to practice and master the sessions. Also, each session builds on the previous one. It’s a cumulative program.

Do the ALERT sessions stimulate my brain and isn't the idea to repeat the stimulation?

Yes, all the ALERT sessions stimulate the brain. The repetition is what helps you master it. Also after you’ve mastered the lessions, the program “conditions” you so that you can retain and hold the Rhythm of Peak Performance.

How is this a natural remedy for ADHD?

The ALERT brain training program is an natural way to boost your brain power so that you can tune out distractions, get organized and be productive. The program teaches you the Rhythm of Peak Performance (The technical name for it is the Sensory Motor Rhythm). Every time you do a session, you're practicing this rhythm. After 60 days, you will have mastered it. That's when the rhythm becomes an automatic response, and you can do it without thinking about it. It just comes naturally.

If I do this program, will my ADHD disappear forever and never come back?

The ALERT program enables you to conquer ADHD. It creates new neural pathways in the brain. These changes are permenant and yours to keep. The only thing that can cause you to relapse is trauma or crisis. It could be anything: Losing your job, ending a relationship, being in a car accident, the death of a loved one, etc.

Even positive changes can trigger your ADHD to flare up again, such as getting married, starting a new job, or moving into a new house.
 If your brainwaves become unbalanced  for any reason, they may not return to normal once the event has passed. If this happens, it's time to start using the ALERT again. Use the program every day until your ADHD improves. 

We stand by our promise that the ALERT will enable you to conquer ADHD. Our brain training program is a tool that enables you to be prepared for the storms of life. If you're having a bad ADHD day, then you can use the ALERT to let go of stress and anxiety. You can use the ALERT when you feel restless, and crave a little extra burst of energy. You can use the ALERT to stimulate and arouse the brain. You can use the ALERT to boost your ability to focus and get things done.

Isn't that better than running to the medicine cabinet when your ADHD flares up? The ALERT is an natural, drug free way to cope with the stress and strain of life. It will help you to be prepared for whatever comes your way. When you train your brain, you transform your life.

What is Sensory Motor Rhythm (SMR)?

The Sensory Motor Rhythm was discovered almost 50 years ago by Dr. Barry Sterman, a neuroscientist at UCLA medical school. It is a brainwave frequency that is associated with motor stillness and calm focus. It is the ability to concentrate without a sense of urgency. It is a beta brainwave frequency of 12 to 15 Hz. When this electrical brainwave frequency is reached, it sets the brain up to communicate with the body’s motor systems to settle down, tune out distractions, and tap into your body’s natural energy—which is a state of calm.

The SMR also soothes restless energy. It helps to soothe feelings of “I can't stand this a second longer” or “Get me outta here.”  If you have ADHD, you're familiar with the frustration that comes with waiting in line, listening to a boring speaker, or driving behind a slowpoke. The SMR can rescue you from this restless energy. It calms your jittery nerves, so that you can roll with the punches, rather than getting stressed out. It also gives you a stick-to-it-iveness that enables you to focus, concentrate, get organized, and complete assignments in record time.

In Nicky's book, she refers to the SMR as the Rhythm of Peak Performance. It is the rhythm of a person who is optimally concentrating, focusing, remembering, being organized, and getting things done. This is the intended outcome of the program: That your ADHD is replaced with the
 Rhythm of Peak Performance.

The ALERT enables you to practice this rhythm until you master it. It's like they say, "practice makes perfect and repitition creates mastery." With the ALERT, you are practicing the Sensory Motor Rhythm. By the end of 60 days, you willl have practiced this rhythm so much that you've mastered it. Now, your brain uses this rhythm on it's own. That's when this rhythm becomes an automatic response. It's like riding a bike or swimming, you can do it automatically without thinking about it.

Is it ok to use the ALERT while taking Ritalin (or other ADHD drugs)?

Some of our customers are already taking Ritalin (or other ADHD meds) and gradually taper off with the help of their doctor. If your doctor is unfamiliar with the ALERT, please download our special 11-page report, Information For Your Doctor

The ALERT program is a natural alternative to drugs, and will stimulate and arouse your brain so that you can better concentrate, focus, tune out distractions, get organized, and be productive. ADHD drugs are a temporary quick fix, but the ALERT makes permanent lasting changes in your brain. It creates new neural pathways for peak performance.

What is Audio-Visual Entrainment (AVE)?

The ALERT is a form of audio-visual entrainment, (AVE) or brain training. Your brain is being stimulated through the ears (auditory cortex) and eyes (visual cortex.) Using the ALERT is a relaxing and enjoyable experience. Most people forget about the light and sound as they begin to relax deeply. Within seconds, you will probably feel like you have fallen asleep.

When you use the ALERT, you will see and hear a rhythm in the form of flashing lights and heartbeat sounds. As you hear and see this rhythm, your brain starts to copy and mirror it. In other words, you will become in-synch with the rhythm emitting from the headphone and eye set. With repeated use, your brain learns to practice and master this rhythm.

By training your brain with the ALERT, you will: (1) stimulate and arouse the brain, (2) stabilize the tempo of your brainwaves, (3) experience a boost of electro-chemical communication in the brain, (4) replace your ADHD with the Rhythm of Peak Performance, (5) increase oxygen and blood flow to the brain, and (6) relax deeply, which lowers stress hormones in the blood (cortisol, adrenaline, and insulin.)

If you want to know more, please read Nicky's book Train Your Brain, Transform Your Life

Click here to read the first chapter

What is entrainment?

To entrain means to follow a rhythm and move at the same pace. With the ALERT, entrainment is what happens when your brain gets "in synch" with with rhythm it is seeing and hearing. It is a phenomenon that occurs naturally, without conscious effort.  The ALERT uses the Sensory Motor Rhythm to help you conquer ADHD and condition your brain for peak performance.

What are brainwaves?

Your brain is made up of billions of neurons which use electricity and chemicals to talk to each other and learn. The combined electrical activity (billions of brain cells talking and sending electrical signals) is called a “brainwave pattern.”

Brainwaves reflect the rhythmic activity of the brain. On paper, brainwaves look like wavy lines because of their cyclic, wave-like nature. Brainwave frequencies are described in terms of hertz (Hz) or cycles per second, which are measured by an EEG (or electroencephalogram.)

Explain the four types of brainwaves.

(1) Beta are quick, low amplitude brainwaves of 14 to 40 times per second (Hz). Beta brainwave patterns are generated naturally when in an awake, alert state of consciousness. Beta waves are produced when you perform any task that requires you to concentrate.

(2) Alpha waves are between 8 and 13 Hz. Alpha waves occur when you rest, meditate or quiet your mind. Alpha represents a state of non-arousal. You’re probably in alpha when you’re watching TV after a long hectic day.

Alpha brainwave rhythms produce:

• Peaceful feelings
• W
arm hands and feet
• Sense of well-being
• Improved sleep
Improved academic performance
 Increased productivity in the workplace
• Reduced anxiety
• Improved immune functioning

It is believed that many creative geniuses, such as Einstein, are in a semi-permanent alpha state. Many insightful people have poor grades in school and are thought to be slow learners. In reality, they need more of a challenge in order to arouse and stimulate their brain.

(3) Theta (4 to 8 Hz): Have you ever sat down to watch a movie with a bag of popcorn? Before you know it, the popcorn is gone and you don’t really remember eating more than a few bites of it. That is an example of a theta state. Sometimes, the same thing happens when you’re driving on a freeway and can't remember the last five miles. In theta, you tend to disengage from the task at hand. You may begin to daydream, imagine or reflect on other things. Interestingly, it is in theta that we often experience flashes of insight, or “eureka” or “light bulb” experiences. In this way, theta can be a very positive and creative mental state.

(4) Delta (0.1 to 4 Hz): When you’re sleeping deeply (but not dreaming), you tend to be in a delta brainwave state. In delta, your brainwaves are of the greatest amplitude and slowest frequency. They typically range from 1 to 4 cycles per second. They never go down to zero because that would indicate the absence of brainwaves, or clinical death. However, deep and dreamless sleep will take you down to the lowest frequency, which is 2 to 3 cycles a second.

For more information on brainwaves, please read Nicky's book Train Your Brain, Transform Your LifeClick here to read the first chapter

What is HRV (Heart Rate Variability)?

HRV is a relaxation technique primarily used with tense people who often experience shallow, rapid breathing when feeling overwhelmed, nervous and/or anxious. By listening to the heartbeat played through the headphones, people can control breathing deep into the tummy (not the chest) for two heartbeats and breathe out for two beats. The breath cycle has been preset to take roughly eight seconds at the beginning of the sessions and lengthen to ten seconds as the session progresses.

What is Target Rate?

The target rate is the desired brainwave state the user wants to achieve during a session. The target rate must remain constant for at least five minutes, which is the time needed to allow brainwave entrainment to occur. When selecting a preset session, the length of time of the session is displayed in minutes and then the target rate flashes. Some preset sessions have a start rate, end rate and a target rate. Some of the sessions have a variety of different rates and therefore no target rate exists.

Will the ALERT help me to reduce TMJ and jaw tension?

Yes. Most people with myo-fascial, shoulder and/or TMJ pain, will begin to feel relief within 10 minutes.

Do you have other questions that are not answered here?

Send an email to Info (at) 
or nickyv (at)

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