by Ryan Pell
Contributing Author, Conscious Reminder
The New Year has begun, and that means that it’s time for adopting new life-changing habits. And why not make meditation one of them?
Meditation is a very old practice that involves various techniques – mindfulness, attention and awareness training, etc. When done right, it can help you clear your mind, become more focused, emotionally calm, and stable.
So, essentially, meditation has the power to change your life for the better.
But, is this power real? How do we know that it’s not forced by meditation junkies?
To clear all the confusion and reassure you that meditation indeed has the power to change your life, let’s take a look at a few scientific studies.
Meditation Literally Changes Your Brain.
You might have heard about the ability of meditation to alleviate stress and anxiety. Some researchers even claim that it can help fight and prevent depression.
These facts all have a scientific background to support them. For instance, the study published by The Harvard Gazette claims that meditation can change the chemical structure of the brain.
This study involved patients with clinical depression. One group of these patients was practicing meditation for a period of time on a regular basis. The researchers noticed the changes in the participants’ brain activation patterns, particularly in the part called the amygdala responsible for emotions and behavior.
Interestingly enough, when the researchers surveyed the group that practiced meditation, all of them reported that they felt less trapped and anxious in general. Meditation helped them refocus their minds and concentrate on their well-being.
However, keep in mind that meditation is not a solution to the problem of depression by any means.
It can be a helpful practice but can only work together with regular therapy and treatment.
You Become More In Control of Your Emotions
The key to a better life is living in harmony with your feelings and emotions. Often, this harmony gets shattered by the challenges of everyday life, and sometimes it’s really hard to get back in the state of balance and peace of mind.
Meditation can help you become more mentally and emotionally fit since, during this practice, you focus on developing awareness of your current state of mind and what caused your emotional distress.
There is also scientific evidence that supports the power of meditation over negative and destructive feelings and emotions. For instance, a study from HHS Public Access involving 159 undergraduate students proved that meditation could help you control your emotions.
At this study, the participants underwent a course of mindful meditation. In the end of the experiment, all the participants reported having fewer negative thoughts and acquiring a more positive life outlook. Meditation helped them view things from different perspectives, as they analyzed stressful situations objectively during the mindful meditation.
Indeed, too often, we get stuck in our brains and perceive one problem from a subjective position.
This is what often causes us to have outbursts of negative emotions, which break our inner balance.
Meditation can help you restore peace of mind and become more emotionally fit.
Regular Meditation Practice Makes You More Attentive
One more factor that creates obstacles on our way to a better life is poor attention span. You’ve definitely suffered from it before at a lecture, when learning French pronunciation rules, or at the latest work meeting – you just feel like your mind is drifting away, and there’s nothing you can do about it.
If you ever were a victim of your poor attention span, it’s time to fix that. And meditation can help you do it. Because the main goal of this practice is mindfulness and awareness, it teaches you to stay in the moment and observe it for a period of time, paying attention to every single detail.
Various studies have also tested the positive effects of meditation on our attentiveness. For instance, a study from the Frontiers in Human Neuroscience magazine involved participants who had to listen to a 10-minute meditation tape. Afterwards, they completed a task to measure their attention. All participants completed the task with a higher degree of accuracy.
The results of this study suggest that a 10-minute mindful meditation can significantly improve your attention span and ability to maintain focus. Such a skill is very beneficial when it comes to improving your quality of life.
As you can see, it’s absolutely worth it to make meditation one of your top habits this year. It can change your life for the better in a variety of ways – make you more emotionally fit, improve your attention, and even help you cope with stress and anxiety.
So, it’s absolutely worth it to make meditation a daily practice. If you are dedicated and consistent, very soon, you’ll notice a positive impact on your well-being and quality of life in general.
About the Author: Ryan is a passionate blogger and writer who likes sharing his thoughts and. Now he works as a content editor and internet researcher, you can check his website here. He likes to travel and explore new countries.
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