If stress makes you feel anxious, sad, and all – try meditating. A recent scientific study shows that mindfulness meditation makes you calmer and happier. It also gives you inner peace.
The MRI scan proves that mindfulness can create changes on the structure of the brain. On a study conducted by the researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, it was found that 30 minutes of mindfulness meditation every day for eight weeks can cause measurable changes on some parts of the brain which are associated with stress, sense of empathy, and memory.
Understanding Mindfulness Meditation
Today, people are busier than they were decades ago. The world’s modern setup has caused stress to many people and such stress lead to different illnesses. Because of this, natural health experts are recommending the use of meditation to help people cope with the debilitating effects of stress.
Meditation is considered as mind-body complimentary medicine. It helps you focus your attention on a specific thing and remove the stream of jumbled thoughts which usually causes stress in our mind and body. Meditation can be practiced by anyone. It’s inexpensive and you don’t need to use any tool or equipment to start meditating. You can meditate anywhere you are. Whether you are riding on a plane, when you’re walking, waiting for the bus, and even when you’re at home.
What happens during meditation?
The step involved in meditation is pretty easy. Meditation means focusing your attention on a specific thing, emptying your mind of all the others and just leaving your entire concentration on such thing. For instance, in meditation training, you might be asked to focus on your breathing or perhaps feel the air touching your face, or hear the sound of the ceiling fan. You may even be asked to walk and feel the soles of your feet touching the ground. During the entire meditation, you will be diverting your thoughts from the past, from what happened yesterday, or what you plan to do tomorrow. Meditation is all about the ‘here’ and ‘now’.
Proven Benefits of Meditation
Meditation can bring you a sense of inner peace, calmness, and balance which in turn benefits your physical, mental, and emotional health. What’s more amazing is that these benefits don’t end when you stop meditating! Furthermore, the benefits of meditating were found to be more than just speculations. Many studies and research have been conducted to determine how mental exercises can promote stress reduction and promote feeling of happiness. When you meditate, you clear your mind from the loads of thoughts and information that builds up stress. Instead, you gain a new perspective on handling stressful and difficult situations, you form habits and skills on managing your stress, you increase your self-awareness, and you learn how to focus on the present and move on from the past. At first, you will find it hard to do away with the thoughts. But regular mental exercises will bring amazing benefits on your health.
Learn more about mindfulness meditation and how it positively changes the brain structure on BBC IPlayer.
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