A woman meditating on a balcony

Meditation and the Mind

Meditation, in a nutshell, is focussing on a single object, memory or thought with the objective of calming your mind. But have you ever wondered how it benefits you and your mind?

Meditation can be performed in many ways. Techniques include focussing on the breath, and taking slow, deep breaths, focussing on a particular place or action, such as walking to that place, or focussing your attention on a particular sound, such as the ringing of bells. Different people find different techniques effective, and meditation is about finding the perfect way to calm yourself and your thoughts. Dr Deepak Chopra, esteemed neuroscientist and philosopher, claims that generally people have an incredible sixty thousand thoughts a day, and meditation helps you reduce this amount and calm your mind.

Meditation is said to give you a sense of awareness of your surroundings and is said to decrease stress levels. Mental or physical stress increases the levels of the stress hormone: cortisol. This can produce harmful effects, such as inflammatory chemicals, cytokines, being released across the body. Essentially, this is where the concepts of depression, anxiety and sleep deprivation come from. Studies have shown meditation reduces stress levels. Various studies demonstrate the reduction of stress and anxiety that arise from mediation.

Meditation is said to make you ‘know yourself’ better, and although you may think you know yourself inside and out, maybe you don’t! If ever you feel worried or upset, have you ever wondered why? Meditation helps you resolve problems, improving your understanding of what you’re thinking and feeling, two things that often get lost in a busy day. The mental awareness that comes from meditation helps you get rid of addictions and make right decisions during your day.

As Dr Deepak Chopra says, “Meditation is not a way of making your mind quiet. It is a way of entering into the quiet that is already there.”

For more ideas on how to meditate, see here – Meditation and Sleep Made Simple – Headspace or download Bee Zone on your phone!

Yuvika, MIV