Over the past few decades, a host of research has supported the conclusion that meditation is good for us, and that we should all meditate a few minutes each day.
Meditation has been found to reduce stress, with all the physical, social and emotional benefits that it provides. Multiple studies have found out that meditation can reduce feelings of depression and anxiety. In 2003, researchers learned that regular meditation helps to boost immune function and can also help control pain.
Here are some benefits of meditation and how to make it part of improving life:
You don’t have to just sit around; walking meditation calms your mind when you focus on your strides and movement of taking steps (rather than, say, focusing on your breath)
Listening mindfully to music, especially music without lyrics, produces the same impact of meditation by allowing you to be transported by the sounds, away from stray and extraneous thoughts.
Daily task meditation is where you take the process of a task such as doing dishes, cooking a meal, or getting dressed.
Your brain might mess with you, but meditating is supposed to be a quieting of the mind, where you think about nothing in particular (or nothing other than the actions of the meditation) to allow that background noise to filter out and let you rest. That’s why exercise can be meditative: at a certain point you’re only able to think about the exercise.
But along the way, throughout each session of meditation, your thoughts are going to keep zooming in and trying to distract you.
This happens all the time in the beginning, but the trick is, with meditation it is not only eliminating those stray thoughts totally but to let them pass through your mind without you grabbing hold of them.
In the first stages of learning, you’ll fail a lot of the time. You’ll be meditating for a while and suddenly realize you stopped somewhere along the way to think about your to-do list.
Eventually, that will happen less and less, and you’ll start distracting yourself by getting frustrated, but you will ultimately be able to let them pass through and over without taking notice; and continue on your meditation for as long as you wish. You don’t have to meditate for hours to get anything out of it. In most cases less than 15 minutes can result in significant improvements to physical, emotional, and psychological health. Some masters of meditation advise to start with just one minute of meditation per day before building up to longer amounts.
Written by: Jason Brick
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