When you picture meditation, does it look like a monk sitting cross-legged with his eyes closed? Well it doesn’t have to look that traditional! You can meditate by simply focusing solely on your breath while laying in bed (don’t fall asleep though 😅) or walking through the park. Meditation is for everyone and that’s why over 200 medical centers, hospitals, and clinics around the world utilize meditation. But why?
1. INCREASED HAPPINESS
When you sit down and meditate, you are training your mind. Like lifting heavy weights, it can be difficult for some people to meditate for long periods of time. Thirty minutes or three hours can make you feel impatient. While meditating you may start to feel the urge to check your phone, watch TV, get food, or just fall asleep…but you must resist! This is what meditation is all about: resisting all of the urges to do anything but meditate. When you give in to these urges it is because you are not entirely capable of being happy completely by yourself and you have not fully understood that you are all you need. You don’t need anything external. Urges are only instant, short-term gratifications. Patience is the key to happiness. The longer you can meditate and be focused on your breath translates directly into life. If you can be completely happy and peaceful sitting by yourself for a long time it will help when you’re not meditating. All those other great things that come along in life will make you even happier. Those things that are supposed to make you irritated won’t have as much of an affect on you because you will be able to react with a more calm response.
2. HEALTH BENEFITS
The amount of health benefits for meditation is ridiculously amazing and the science proves it. Viviane Freire Bueno, from the Department of Psychology at University of Sao Paulo, looked to see how meditation has helped people who have ADHD. They tested people with and without ADHD and found that mindful awareness practices improved affective symptoms, quality of life, and attentional performance in adult ADHD patients and adults without ADHD. This shows that meditation can help almost anyone feel the beneficial effects of improved focus.
The United States is also in dire need of meditation because nearly half of adults have hypertension or high blood pressure without even knowing it. Hypertension can put you at risk for heart attack, stroke, heart failure, kidney disease, sexual dysfunction, and more. Meditation can prevent this because it reduces blood pressure, resting heart rate, and oxygen consumption, as discovered by a study by Herbert Benson from the Harvard Medical School. The United States clearly has an increasing health problem that can be prevented or improved for free.
3. MEDITATION REDUCES FEAR
You might think that it’s not possible to measure fear, but it’s actually located in a particular place in the brain. Because of meditation, people are able to control their fear and anxiety since the assessment center of our brains becomes stronger while neural paths between the fear center and the me center become weakened. Fear is a huge part of many people’s lives and it dictates many of their actions.
Meditation can also bring to the surface challenges and negative experiences that all people have. It is imperative that people discover what they have been suppressing because they can find a solution, make peace, and move on with their life in a way that opens doors one would have never even thought existed. To ride the roller coaster which is called life, one must not be afraid of what is to come. With meditation, those fears can be lessened or even eliminated to make a braver person.
HOW: MEDITATION CHANGES OUR VIBRATIONAL FREQUENCY
When one meditates, a major shift can begin to happen. It is a vibrational shift which is paramount for tuning ourselves to our maximum potential. The further into the trance that you get, the frequency gets longer in wavelength, which slows the waves down.
The frequency in the brain during the waking state is at the beta waves level, meaning the brain wavelengths are short and close together. But, once a person stills the mind into meditation, the brain waves move into the alpha state, then theta, and maybe even delta if you get good at maintaining the trance and not getting distracted by stray thoughts.
It is great to slow the wavelengths of your mind because you can achieve perfect calmness and peace which is not cluttered by erratic thoughts. This gives you more time to place greater focus on thoughts that do matter. You can now begin problem solving even more creatively since scientists have noted that the alpha and theta state allow for more imaginative thinking. They have also found that there is better synchronization of the two brain spheres and reduced pain as endorphins are released.
The list of benefits from meditating is incredible:
- Makes you happier
- Improves attention
- Lowers blood pressure, resting heart rate, and oxygen consumption
- Gets rid of fears
- Reduces stress
- Makes you calmer
- Increases creativity
To sum this up, there is a plethora of benefits from meditation but the best effect of meditation for me is increased happiness. Imagine if everyone was able to find complete happiness meditating. All that self-love would make them act in a far more loving way to others around them. It would be a place of peace, and total prosperity. So take a break, and meditate.