Meditation is about purposefully practicing mindfulness in a way that flexes your mindfulness muscle making you more in tune and mindful.

A means of transforming the mind

Meditation is gaining popularity but in fact has been around for thousands and thousands of years and its health benefits have been known for centuries by those who practiced it.

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Meditation is now entering what I call the “main stream,” as people’s lives get busier and busier and people are more and more stressed and looking for ways of stress relief and to find some area of calm in their lives, to be able to switch off from the pressure and find inner peace.

Benefits of meditating

Many scientists have conducted studies to understand the benefits of mediation and in particular, most experiments were conducted to find out the benefits of meditation on stress.

However, they discovered that meditation helps to lower blood pressure, improves heart rate, breathing and most areas of the brain.

Some studies have shown that meditation produces long lasting changes in the brain and helps with attention, memory, learning and conscious perception

Keeping focused

If you are like me and tried to meditate and found it difficult, if you had the same experience I initially had thinking that I had to clear my mind of all thought, sitting in silence with no thoughts.

In fact, what happened was I felt more stressed and thought about all the things I could and should be doing. I got very uncomfortable and gave up.

If you did something similar I encourage you to keep reading.

Finding what works for you

I was fortunate enough to come across a free 21 day guided mediation that took 10 – 15 minutes a day and I learnt that, contrary to what I thought, I could allow my thoughts to flow, the aim was to bring them back to a central point, this particular meditation used a mantra, but you use a candle and focus on the flame, or simply focus on your breath.

Meditation can be simple and easy if you allow it to be and benefits can be seen in as little as 5 to 10 minutes a day.

I practice meditation daily and used two different techniques:

– Transcendental Meditation

– The ThetaHealing® technique which is a meditation technique and spiritual philosophy – that creates a positive lifestyle.

7 benefits of meditating

These are just some of the scientifically proven benefits, although sometimes it is not all about science and more about how you feel, connecting mind, body and spirit.

1. Increased immunity – relaxation and mediation appear to boost immunity giving you greater resistance to viruses and even tumours.

2. Emotional balance

3. Lowers blood pressure

4. Boosts fertility

5. Anti-inflammatory – stress leads to inflammation which is linked to ill health, mediation can switch off the stress response.

6. Reduces anxiety and social anxiety

7. Improved concentration and memory

Whilst meditation is not the solution on its own, it is one of the tools we can use.

There is a lot of evidence that it may do some good for those who practice it regularly and from personal experience I can say that my meditation practice has been life changing.

Practice makes perfect

There are many large corporations, actors and schools that are now including meditation into their schedules and finding significant increases in productivity, and reduction of anxiety and anti-social behaviour.

I certainly think is worth a shot, everyone has a few minutes in the morning and in the evening, if you say you don’t have enough time then think of all the time you spend on Facebook or in front of the TV and I am sure you can find 5 – 10 minutes a day to start your mediation practice.

benefits of meditating_2Give it a try and see what happens when you can start to quieten the mind. Pay attention to your thoughts, observe them and let them go rather than reacting to them.

Techniques to try

Try some or all of the techniques below, find one that resonates and works for you. The more regularly you can practise them the more benefits you will see.

1. Scanning

Sit or lie comfortably and starting with you head working down through your neck to your arms, torso, legs and feet, notice if you feel any tension and release this, relax all these areas as you work through them.

2. Focus on the Breath

Sit comfortably and focus on our breath, notice your inhalation and exhalation, let your tension go with each breath. When you find your mind wandering just gently bring it back to your breath.

3. Mantra

Sit or lie in a comfortable position and repeat a simple mantra, allow your thoughts to come and go and just gently bring your focus back to the mantra.

4. Visualization

Imagine being somewhere that has happy memories for you and imagine any tension being released and feel those happy thoughts washing away the tension.

Make your images as vivid and colorful as possible, remember any smells – you might find this challenging at fist but it does get easier every time you practice.

If you would like any help with your meditation practice and to find out more about mediation and improving your health connect with me by clicking below. I will share a free guided mediation with you and you can also find out how I can help create a bespoke plan for you, and get you started straight away.

Connect with WatchFit Expert Kerry Madgwick

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