Meditation is beneficial for not only your body but also for your mind. It’s easy for life to feel stressful and overwhelming, but meditation is a tool you can use to help calm your anxiety, re-focus your attention, and get back on track. Whether you’re a stay-at-home parent or work 70 hours a week as a lawyer, meditation is helpful for people from all walks of life.
Did you know that meditation is beneficial for those who’ve suffered from a traumatic brain injury or have a developmental disability? Meditation has physical, emotional, and neurological benefits, which is vital for people whose brains may have neurological obstacles.
At A Cognitive Connection, we help you discover various tools that you can use to enhance your cognitive abilities and improve your brain function. One of the tools we like to integrate into our patients’ treatment plans is meditation. Whether you have a developmental disability or are struggling to balance parenting and a full-time job, we may encourage you to meditate to help exercise your brain. Keep reading to discover some of our favorite benefits of meditation.
Meditation allows you to deal with stress healthily and productively. Although meditation is not a novel concept, it’s become increasingly popular over the last few years. With regular meditation practice and continuous mindfulness training, you can improve all aspects of your life. Some benefits of meditation include:
- Reduce Stress
- No matter how stressful a situation is, meditating will help alleviate your stress and anxiety. Stressful situations cause our brains to go into fight or flight mode. Meditation helps prevent this response by giving you a moment to breathe and step away from the situation.
- Increase Productivity
- Studies show that daily meditation can boost your productivity. You’ll find yourself laser-focused on your tasks at hand and will have a clear mind when you approach something.
- Boost Focus
- Meditation improves your ability to focus by increasing cortical thickness in the areas of your brain that handle attention. The increase in cortical thickness will allow you to focus on one task at a time and become mindful of your breath and presence.
- Improve Relationships
- An unexpected benefit of regular meditation is an increase in healthy relationships. With proper meditation training, you’ll find yourself more appreciative of the relationships in your life, and that will reflect in more fulfilling, meaningful relationships.
- Regulate Mood
- Practicing different types of meditation increases your brain’s dopamine and serotonin levels. This increase in levels helps you relax and respond appropriately to external stimuli. By having a stronger connection to yourself, you’ll have more energy and less stress, so you’ll be able to approach situations more accordingly.
How To Start Meditating Daily
One of the best things about meditation is that you can practice any time, anywhere. To start your meditation practice, you want to ease into it and introduce yourself to meditation slowly. Practice in the morning so that you set positive intentions for the day.
To meditate effectively, you first want to find somewhere comfortable to sit. This can be anywhere from a pillow to the couch to your backyard, as long as you feel comfortable. The amount of time you spend meditating will depend on your schedule and the amount of free time you have. However, no matter what your schedule looks like, try your best to make your meditation practice a priority.
When you feel ready, breathe in slowly through your nose and out through your mouth. Try and focus on each individual breath. You may find this surprisingly difficult, but be prepared that meditating is not as easy as it seems. If you find yourself struggling in the beginning, write down your thoughts and feelings in a journal to help you focus on what’s happening to your brain and body during meditation. Try your best to meditate every day, and you’ll soon notice the benefits.
How To Meditate For Anxiety
Many individuals struggle with anxiety, especially those with severe brain injuries and developmental disabilities. Research shows that integrating a regular meditation practice into your routine can help reduce your anxiety and manage your symptoms. There are different types of meditation for anxiety, including:
- Mindfulness Meditation
- Mindfulness meditation is one of the most well-known and researched types of meditation available. It involves breathing exercises, guided meditation in the form of imagery, and focus techniques. By integrating these techniques, you’ll be better equipped to go with the flow, reduce your anxiety and depression, calm your mind, and reduce your desire to over-analyze.
- Body Scan Meditation
- Anxiety can manifest itself as an upset stomach, headache, tingly hands, and so much more. Body scan meditation, also called progressive relaxation, helps you scan your body for points of tension so you can release them. To begin the meditation practice, start at one end of your body and slowly move to the opposite end. Pause at each body part and take a moment to determine if there’s any tension, pain, or discomfort present. Focus on any sensations you have for about 30 seconds, and work on accepting the way that those sensations feel. After you accepted it, make an effort to relax and release the tension you have.
- Loving-Kindness Meditation
- Loving-kindness meditation, also called metta, is intended to help you cultivate kindness for yourself and others. To practice this type of meditation, you’re going to repeat phrases that express positive emotions, such as, “May you find love. May you find happiness.”
Experience The Benefits Of Meditation With A Cognitive Connection
Whether you’re interested in reducing chronic pain, want to minimize your mind wandering at work, or want to minimize your anxiety, the effectiveness of meditation is unprecedented. At A Cognitive Connection, our team will help you explore this mindfulness-based stress reduction technique. We’ll also give you the tools and resources you need to be confident in your meditation practice. To learn more about meditation and how it can help improve your cognitive abilities, please contact our team today!