5 Benefits Of Meditation And Why You Should Start Now
The mental health benefits of meditation include better focus and concentration, improved self-esteem, helps lower your levels of stress and anxiety, foster kindness, and improves self-awareness.
Meditation is a habitual process of training your mind to focus and redirect your thoughts. People also use meditation to develop other beneficial habits and feelings, such as a positive mood and outlook, self-discipline, healthy sleep patterns and even increased pain tolerance.
Better Focus And Concentration
Meditation helps you focus on the present, which can improve your concentration daily. Meditation encourages you to slow down and allows for deeper self-reflection, helping you discover positive attributes about yourself.
Some forms of meditation may help you develop a stronger understanding of yourself, helping you grow into your best self.
Stress reduction is one of the most common reasons people try meditation. Mindfulness meditation can also lower the levels of cortisol… the stress hormone which helps you feel more relaxed.
Mental and physical stress cause increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol produces many of the harmful effects of stress, such as the release of inflammation-promoting chemicals called cytokines.
Repeating a mantra such as a word or phrase during meditation can also have a calming effect, by shifting your focus away from distracting thoughts.
Helps Manage Anxiety And Depression
Meditation helps train your mind to focus on the present, making you less likely to ruminate on anxious thoughts that can fuel depression.
Meditation can also reduce symptoms of anxiety disorders, such as phobias, social anxiety, paranoid thoughts, obsessive-compulsive behaviors and panic attacks (9).
Yoga has been shown to help people reduce anxiety. Due to benefits from both meditative practice and physical activity (12).
Helps Fight Addiction
The mental discipline you can develop through meditation may help you break dependencies by increasing your self-control and awareness of triggers for addictive behaviors (34).
Meditation can alter the brain receptors associated with drug and alcohol addiction, which may reduce cravings for these substances. One study that taught 19 recovering alcoholics how to meditate found that participants who received that training got better at controlling their cravings and craving-related stress (37).
Meditation may also help you control food cravings. A review of 14 studies found mindfulness meditation helped participants reduce emotional and binge eating (38).
Makes You Have More Compassion
Meditating can help foster kindness and compassion for yourself and others. It strengthens circuits in the brain that pick up on other people’s emotions, promotes altruistic behavior, and decreases the implicit or unconscious bias responsible for perpetuating harmful stereotypes.
Metta, a type of meditation also known as loving-kindness meditation, begin with developing kind thoughts and feelings toward yourself. Twenty-two studies of this form of meditation have demonstrated its ability to increase peoples compassion toward themselves and others (30).
To start a kindness meditation, you might envision a loved one in your mind and wish them happiness. You can use a simple phrase that you silently repeat to yourself, like ‘may you enjoy happiness and kindness in your life’.
Well, we hope you enjoy a few minutes of meditation throughout your day! Please feel free to share your experience in the comments below! Stay safe and God bless.