Benefits of meditation are plenty, and mostly for the day to day stress. When life does not go our way (and it usually doesn't), we automatically stress out and tackle our problems with attitudes, behaviors and habits that tend to be very detrimental to our physical and emotional wellbeing.
The great news is that our brain has an amazing capacity to change, and it's called neuroplasticity. Using meditation techniques, we can train and shape our mind to be more capable to do all the things that we set out to do, and become more resilient while facing whatever life throws our way. Finding balance in your life is possible if we allow your brain to meditate!
Benefits of meditation
Meditation has been practiced, probably since the beginning of mankind, by many belief systems and religions. It has been proven to help us regain control of and transform our thoughts in order to cultivate healthier behaviors and attitudes that ultimately change our lives for the best.
Incorporating meditation in your daily routine allows you to be more clear-minded and composed in times of adversity, and it can also treat physiological problems.
Here are some of the benefits meditation can provide for you.
Emotional health and happiness improvement
While scientists used to believe that people were born with a certain disposition to be either happy or sad throughout their lives, new studies have shown that practicing meditation consistently augments levels of GABA, one of the neurotransmitters that are crucial to feeling happy and promote emotional wellbeing. With a small commitment of just a few minutes every day, meditation can increase your feelings of happiness, which inevitably influence your attitudes and behaviors at home, in the workplace, and your relationships.
Personal awareness improvement
Meditation helps us be more aware about our existing habits and attitudes, and forces us to stop and view our thoughts in a different light. By being aware of our thought patterns, this helps us train our brain to have less anxiety, and allows us to create better and more positive thought patterns, which inevitably reflect into every aspect of our lives, including diet, exercise and the way we interact with our family, friends and colleagues.
Emotional intelligence and empathy development
It should come as no surprise that meditation goes hand in hand with emotional intelligence. A consistent meditation practice allows us to be aware of and control our emotions while expressing ourselves to others. It increases our capability of being present and listening, without letting our thoughts and feelings get in the way. The more calm and relaxed we are, the better we will be equipped to deal with our emotions.
Meditation is a great tool to flex our most fascinating muscle: the brain. It has been demonstrated that it enlarges the hippocampus, which is considered to be the seat of memory. Our mental capacity increases as we grow older, and soon starts decreasing after it reaches its peak. Practicing meditation aids in slowing the aging process, and can actually help us maintain high levels of concentration and sharp focus even during later years. It also allows to access our subconscious memory archive, helping us recall things we may have forgotten. Not only does it help us prolong our brain's life span, but also to prevent memory loss.
Meditation can modify the way our brain responds to stress by breaking off our vicious cycle of obsessive, and often negative, racing thoughts. Practicing meditation provides clarity and space that helps us discern what is reasonable or not, breaking negative thought patterns, and drastically diminishing rumination and our tendency to worry.
Anxiety and depression relief
One of the most common uses for meditation is anxiety relief. Meditation can alleviate the effects of anxiety and even help with depression. Anxiety enlarges the amygdala, which is in charge of the fear response, which causes even more anxiety and fear. A consistent meditation practice can reverse this damage and reduce anxiety symptoms. Many studies have also found that meditation can aid many other kinds of mental disorders such as panic disorder, attention deficit hyperactive disorder, agoraphobia and addiction.
Blood pressure reduction
Practicing meditation may be able to prevent and lower high blood pressure. Recent studies suggest that Transcendental Meditation stimulates the genes that create telomerase, an enzyme that is connected with mortality and low blood pressure. Telomere dysfunction is associated with heart attacks, high blood pressure and strokes, which could lead to death. Stressful lifestyles lead to the shortening of these enzymes, which cause in cancer, aging and an elevated risk of death.
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