What are the benefits of Meditation?

Let’s get straight into it.  Whether you’re a regular at meditation or new to the concept, this post will offer a helpful guide into the benefits of meditation and help you understand what an important practice meditation can be.  Whether you have an hour to spare or just 5 minutes, taking that time for yourself in a calm environment can help you find some “calm in the chaos”.

What is Meditation?

Meditation is the practice of focusing the mind. You can do this by focusing on a specific object, thought or activity. It can help to train the mind to be more aware. You’re not trying to stop the thoughts or feelings completely; you’re simply trying to observe them. Being in the present moment, or the “here and now” means that you are fully aware of what is happening at that exact moment.

There are around 16 different types of meditations, with guided and mindfulness being the most popular. 

Other popular meditation types:

  • Body Scan
  • Visualisation
  • Loving Kindness
  • Reflection
  • Zen
  • Mantra
  • Transcendental
  • Yoga Meditation
  • Chakra
  • Qigong
  • Sound bath

What are the benefits?

There is an abundance of different benefits to a person’s health and wellbeing by practicing meditation. Different studies have shown that meditation not only benefits the mind, but the physical, emotional, and spiritual aspects of a person.  With as little as 5 minutes practice per day the benefits can be seen.

Stress Relief

One of the most popular benefits to a person, is that it can help to relieve stress. When a person is stressed, they find it difficult to relax, they can be on high alert. This is the body’s natural response, it’s the “fight or flight” response. This means the body is producing adrenaline or cortisol. This response can be helpful when you are in danger, but when it isn’t required and becomes a daily occurrence, it can have an extremely negative impact on not just the mind but the body. Finding the time to meditate can help to clear the mind of the racing, ruminating thoughts, which in turn can help to let go of the feelings of stress. Meditation has the opposite effect on the body as stress. It activates the parasympathetic nervous system. By reducing the levels of stress someone is experiencing it can also reduce anxiety.

More Self-Awareness

Some forms of meditation may help a person to develop a stronger sense of self. It enables you to dig deep and truly get to know yourself. You will learn to accept yourself for who you are with no judgement. For example, by completing a mantra meditation you could repeat positive affirmations over and over to solidify the relationship you have with yourself. Meditation can be a powerful tool to help you remove negative emotions and feelings of insecurity. Most people struggle with low self-esteem as we all tend to have a negative inner dialogue. This is usually an accumulation of learnt behaviors, other people’s opinions, and critical comments we receive over time. Meditation can silence the inner critic.

Better Sleep

Another fantastic benefit of meditation is better sleep. This is due to the calmer state of mind and how the brain waves are altered. Meditation has been shown to increase the “alpha waves” – the relaxation brain waves and reduce the “beta waves” – the active thought brain waves. Mindfulness meditation is one of most common techniques to assist with insomnia, broken sleep, and restlessness, as you tend to focus on one thing in particular, whether that is a body scan, focusing on the breath or even focusing on the senses. This helps you to break out of the unhelpful cycles of worry which can help to promote a more relaxed and calm state of mind making it easier for a person to drift off to sleep. Meditation has also been proven to increase levels of melatonin which aids with a more restful night’s sleep.

Inner Peace

Inner peace is another benefit of meditation. Inner peace refers to a state of mind of being mentally and spiritually at peace. It is the ability to deal with stressful situations by remaining in a calm state. The healing and rejuvenating effects meditation brings can make a person more happy, peaceful, and calm. The deep awareness is within us all, it is just about tapping into it and allowing it to come to the surface. Learning to connect to your higher self can be one of the most enlightening experiences a person can go through.

Easier Digestion

Stress also has a negative impact on digestion, this is due to chronic inflammation caused by increased levels of biochemistry in digestive fluids. The deep and relaxing feeling that meditation creates can help to restore this in the body. It also improves the flow of blood to the gut which helps nutrients flow more easily throughout the body.

Less Negative Thoughts

Most people find it difficult to fix their problems or worries, this is down to the fact they feel their problems are larger than they really are. The mind needs to be calm to have space to problem solve or rationalize. For instance, when the mind is racing, its hard to see the bigger picture, you become stuck in a mental loop. You can then in turn make up possible scenarios in your mind, which are unlikely to come true. By relaxing the mind through meditation, you can influence your thoughts which also influence your behaviors.

Meditation is often misunderstood by those who have never tried it. But numerous evidence-based studies around the world prove how it can help you, not only mentally, but physically. By implementing a daily practice, you can literally turn your life around. People underestimate the power they have, to heal themselves with tools they can use for free.

Healing the body from head to toe, I believe there are no reasons why a person shouldn’t meditate.

With love Katie xx