Meditation has gone mainstream and trendy, and this thousand-year-old discipline remains one of the freshest, purest and most affordable ways to calm the mind and relieve the day to day stress of everyday life. With so many people getting into the meditation train, we have for you even more reasons you should take your time out and meditate.
1. Helps reduce stress
Meditation elicits what scientists call the “relaxation response,” which is the opposite of the “fight-or-flight” response, stress causes the body. Studies show that this relaxation response assists in alleviating stress-induced symptoms such as high blood pressure or a fast heart rate.
The relaxation response gives the body a deep physiological rest, and scientists say that it immediately affects positive changes in the working of genes that dictate energy metabolism, insulin, and immune function. Besides reducing stress, this intervention can also counteract the effects of anxiety, diabetes, hypertension, depression, and aging.
2. Helps you catch more Zs.
One of the primary reasons why insomnia is so prevalent is because many people spend their nights bombarded by thoughts that eventually cause depression, stress or anxiety, leaving little for some much-needed shut-eye. Scientists though have backed what every meditation guru knows. Meditating can help you monitor your thoughts, keeping those negative thoughts at bay, therefore reducing stress and insomnia.
Besides helping you get some sleep, meditation also helps you get more satisfying sleep, by assisting the body produce the hormone melatonin, therefore giving you enhanced rapid eye movement (REM) sleep.
3. Helps relieve pain
Studies done by Jon Kabat- Zinn of the University of Massachusetts Medical School’s Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, show that meditation can significantly alleviate chronic pain symptoms, by targeting how your brain works. This, in turn, means that chronic pain patients can have a better quality of life through the simple and affordable art of meditation.
And in case you are prone to headaches and migraines, meditation can be your first line of defense, as research has shown that meditation is particularly useful against tension headaches.
4. Helps you get more out of your workout
Meditation is the perfect tool for rejuvenation and enables you to keep your muscles and nervous system in tip-top shape after a massive full blown workout. It helps keeps you in your prime condition, by allowing your body and mind to rest deeply, priming you for the next beast mode work out session. Add that to meditation’s ability to offer pain relief, and you are good to go.
5. Helps you build better relationships.
Meditation assists you to stay grounded and stay in the present, untethered by negative thoughts in mind about the past or the future. By helping you focus on the present views, meditation allows you to interact better with your current environment, making you more focused, attentive, receptive and efficient. This, in turn, will impact your relationships positively, connecting with people better. Meditation puts you in touch with your emotions as well as those of others, which is essential to a harmonious relationship. More studies have proven that women who practice the art of meditation have significantly more marital bliss than those who do not.
One study shows that people who are into meditation are better problem solvers as they approach problems without hostility and in a more accommodating mood than those who do not meditate. This could be due to meditation’s ability to enable you to increase your consciousness and help you shed off emotional weight such as anger, pride, fear, desire, jealousy, by fostering courage, peace, love, and neutrality.
6. Helps you get more creative
In case you are caught up in a creative rut, meditation could offer the inspiration you need to get back on the creative wheel. Meditation helps you get into a listening state of mind, which is paramount for a new flow of ideas. A 2014 study from Leiden University suggests too that meditation can make you more creative and it does not matter if you are a novice or guru at it. The practice can have a profound long-lasting influence on your ability to foster new ideas, and now solutions to problems.