Meditation is a mindfulness practice growing in popularity year by year in the West. But for those living in Eastern cultures, mediation is part of what they do everyday and from a young age.
Many people think yoga is about flexibility but my answer to that question always is that yoga isn’t about flexibility of your body, but your mind. And this all starts with meditation.
So why meditate? Here’s 8 benefits:
1. Quiet your mind
Meditation encourages you to have a single point of focus…and. over time this quiets your mind both when you’re meditating and when you’re not. The time you dedicate to your meditation practice can spill over into your everyday life.
2. Enhance self awareness
Self awareness is a personal thing…and it’s different for every person. Self awareness is about our perceptions of ourselves, the world around us and how they line up with our internal standards. High levels of self awareness enable us to understand others perceptions of us, manage our emotions, objectively evaluate ourselves and align with our values.
3. Cultivate calmness
Meditation is an opportunity to pause. To connect with ourselves and to disconnect from others and the outside world. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 10 mins, 30 mins or longer, we’re cultivating calm whilst meditating…but it doesn’t end there.
The feeling we get as we meditate becomes something we want to invite into our lives more often and we begin to invite and seek out those feelings of calm in more moments of our lives.
4. Connection with self and others
A gift of meditation is the greater connection we feel with ourselves. The inner warmth and gratitude we cultivate for ourselves as we meditate translates over into our relationships and connections with others.
5. Reduce stress
The moments of stillness and silence we feel in meditation can reduce when and how we feel stress. The calmness we cultivate as we meditate often creates a ripple effect that spills over into other aspects of our lives and can reduce our levels of stress.
6. Help manage anxiety
Anxiety is one the most common mental health conditions and is related to a fear of the future. In 2020, this is something more people have experienced due to the uncertainty of lockdown and what may or may happen in the future.
Meditation brings you into the present to focus on your breath, the moment and as you take these moments of pause when meditating it can infiltrate other aspects of our lives.
7. Improve concentration
In clearing some of the chitter chatter in our minds and taking moments of pause as we meditate, we can improve our concentration.
If you’ve ever experienced “brain fog” you’ll likely relate to this. A benefit of meditating is a potential lifting of this fog which can translate into improved concentration. The more you meditate, the more you can gradually feel this lifting.
8. Improve mental health
The seven previous benefits can all combine to help improve your overall mental health. Cultivating a regular meditation practice can benefit your mental health in more ways than one so start small, stay consistent and feel and observe the changes and stillness as you stick with it.
I’d love to hear about how you feel meditation benefits you…leave your comments below!