"Meditation trains the brain to achieve sustained focus, and to return to that focus when negative thinking, emotions, and physical sensations intrude - which happens a lot when you feel stressed and anxious”.
Did you know that simply sitting and breathing mindfully can significantly change the brain? It’s true!
We’ve all heard that meditation leads to greater mental clarity, lower levels of stress and reduces anxiety. But how does meditation benefit the brain?
Mindfulness practice brings about positive physiological changes that make the connection between meditation and the brain even more profound. Mindfulness encourages you to open up with your emotions. As a result, you can be better able to identify, experience, and process your emotions.
WHAT DOES MEDITATION MEAN?
Good question! Meditation is indeed learning to work with the mind. It is defined as “the act of giving your attention to only one thing, as a way of becoming calm and relaxed,” or “serious thought or study, or the product of this activity”.
ARE MEDITATION AND MINDFULNESS THE SAME THING?
Mindfulness and meditation are reflections of each other: mindfulness supports and enriches meditation, while meditation nurtures and expands mindfulness. Mindfulness can be applied to any situation throughout the day and meditation is usually practiced for a specific amount of time.
“Mindfulness meditation is a moment-to-moment awareness of the present moment,” says Dr. Nerurkar. “It uses your breath to create an anchor to keep bringing your attention back to the present moment and help with cognitive retraining.”
DO YOU FEEL RESTLESS SLEEPS?
If you’re one of those who stare at the ceiling and count sheep all night to no avail, meditation just might be a solution. It can help you sleep better. Meditation calms your mind and help you promote better quality sleep. As a relaxation technique, it can quiet your mind while enhancing inner peace. If you’ll do it before bedtime, it can reduce your sleep troubles by promoting calmness.
Do you get negative thoughts in your mind? Meditation can help you get out of them. Meditation has a way of making you more mindful of your thoughts, feelings, and sense of who you are. Meditation releases chemicals in your brain similar to those released by laughter. It makes your brain feel happy.
The better you get at meditation and the longer you let yourself look inward, the better you will feel.
BETTER CONTROLLED STRESS AND ANXIETY
Mindfulness meditation is a good practice for stress prevention so that when adverse situations occur, we don’t let them get out of control.
But question arises is HOW?
The stress hormone cortisol is released by the hypothalamus in the brain every time we get into stressful situations. But you don’t need to worry. Participating in mindfulness programs can help in decreasing cortisol production in the brain. Stress hormone levels remain low hours after the meditation sessions ends.
HOW TO BE MINDFUL RIGHT NOW?
Focus on your breath for a few minutes. Feel your chest rise and fall, notice the sensation of the breath as it enters and exits your nose. When your mind wanders, simply return your attention to the breath. Focus on the present moment: the here and now. Notice this very moment, it feels good to be alive, right now.
To Conclude, mindfulness meditation will never be a waste of your time. If you suffer from depression, meditation could be exactly the help you need. It is a companion to have throughout life, like an old friend we turn to when in need of direction and clarity. There’s no right or wrong way to practice, we all do it differently. Most important of all, meditation is to be enjoyed!