Meditation has been used since ancient times as a means to reduce stress, calm the mind and increase inner peace, and most spiritual traditions have some form of meditation practice. Therefore, there are many different types of meditation. Generally, we can say meditation is any practice where you focus your attention on specific internal or external processes, whether it is your stream of consciousness, your sensations, your breath, repeating a mantra or identifying sounds.
Nowadays, most people use the word meditation to refer to relaxation techniques and mindfulness. In order to see what techniques are suitable for you, you should learn more about different types of meditation and try them out. Any meditation practice is highly beneficial and have been around for millennia for a reason. Science is finally catching up with the importance of meditation, and we have just heard confirmation from Harvard neuroscientists’ study that meditation grows our brains. We present you with reasons why you should take up meditation today.
Meditation is one of few practices that work on all levels – it influences our emotional, mental, spiritual, and physical bodies.
- reduces stress and calms down the central nervous system
- alleviates depression and improves our mood since it boosts the production of serotonin and melatonin, hormones that make us happy
- makes you more emotionally stable
- reduces extreme emotional reactions like fear, anger and anxiety
- increases low levels of frustration tolerance
- increases the experiences of inner calm and peace, joy and contentment
- improves cognitive functions like focus and concentration which translate into productivity
- grows grey matter
- builds new neural connections between left and right brain hemispheres making you smarter
- boosts logical and critical thinking
- gives you a quick mind
- improves your memory and awareness
- helps you see the details as well as the big picture
- gives you better control over your thought processesPhysical benefits
- boost the immune system
- helps reduce inflammation
- alleviates symptoms of asthma, heart disease, allergies, cancer, IBS, high blood pressure, headaches, stress symptoms
- decreases emotional and physical pain
- improves your motor skills by balancing both brain hemispheres
- boosts your energy and alleviates fatigue
- improves the quality of your sleep and rest
- allows you to breathe properly (longer, deeper breaths)
- improves your posture and spinal health Spiritual benefits
- improves and refines your intuition
- opens you up to spiritual awareness
- awakens your latent talents
- boosts your compassion, understanding and empathy
- lets you experience different states of consciousness
- leads to enlightenment (it might take a while!)
- puts you in the state of ‘flow’
- lets you stay in the present moment or be mindful
- puts you in touch with your real, inner you
As you can see, the benefits of meditation are many. Not only does it make you smarter, calmer, healthier and generally a better person to everyone including yourself, it also makes you feel happy.
If you’d prefer to be instructed, local community colleges, rehabilitation centers, and holistic practices usually have beginner meditation courses you can sign up for.
You can only change your life for the better, so get started today!