Benefits of Meditation and The Health Benefits of Meditation
Meditation is often over looked by many for varying reasons, quite commonly because people feel as though they are too busy in their lives and simply don’t have the time. While these feelings are understandable they are not an excuse.
There are many health benefits of meditation. Taking the time to complete a quick meditation exercise in the morning and at night, even for only five minutes, will:
- Drastically improve your mental health
- Your emotional health
- …and your physical health
All in all, the health benefits of meditation are just too good to ignore. Meditation offers you complete improvement to your overall health and well-being. On a psychological, mental, emotional, physical and spiritual level. Therefore meditation should form a foundation for healthy living.
Your mind is your instrument…learn to be its master otherwise suffer as its slave
There Are Many Health Benefits of Meditation
There are many health benefits of meditation. Meditation is a form of deep relaxation and offers a variety of health benefits, mentally and emotionally as well as physically.
In addition to this, meditation also offers you the opportunity to connect to your higher spiritual self and assists you in gaining an overall balance within your life, all in all making for an improved, more refined you.
Today’s modern word is an understandably hectic place. However, by dedicating a short amount of time towards a regular meditation, over time you will notice an improvement in many areas of your life. Including an improvement to your energy levels.
If you’ve never properly tried meditating before and scoff at the idea, at least give it a try and experience the benefits for yourself. And there’s lots of science proving the health benefits of meditation.
The Science and Health Benefits of Meditation
Meditation has been scientifically proven to:
- Lower your blood pressure by decreasing your psychological stress
- Improve concentration and productivity by increasing your ability to focus your thoughts and mind
- Improve your sleep and fight insomnia by using the power of your thoughts to control your brain activity
- Reduce the sensations of anxiety
- Decrease inflammation at a cellular level
- Boost immune system function
Frequent and regular meditation has also been shown to:
- Reduce the levels of pain you may have in your body
- Help build a sense of social connectedness
- Contribute towards a longer life
- Slow the ageing process by decreasing stress by reducing the free-radicals in the body that cause cellular damage
- Decrease feelings of depression
- Improve positive emotions
- Regulate mental and emotional processes
There are many more positive reasons why you should incorporate meditation into your every day life. Meditation is one of the simplest, yet most powerful ways of taking control of your emotions, your feelings, your thoughts, your energy levels and your higher spiritual self, all resulting in an improved you.
Ways to meditate
There are a few different ways in which you can meditate. You can:
- Mediate in a quiet room in silence
- Mediate with soothing music playing quietly in the background
- Meditate while listening to guided meditations on CD or MP3
Whether you are experienced in meditation or a complete beginner, I would strongly recommend guided meditation as an excellent way to clear your mind and sooth your body.
There are various CD’s (if anyone actually uses those things) and on-line tracks that you may purchase which help take you on a guided meditation and it’s the easiest way to slip your mind into a state of total relaxation.
With guided meditation you will generally have some sort of soothing and relaxing music or natural sound playing in the background. There will also be a softly spoken female, or male if you prefer, who soothingly speaks to you while you relax, helping create a visualisation of a quiet, peaceful and tranquil place.
The aim is to help you to effortlessly drift off into a deep state of relaxation and with practice, an altered state of consciousness. There are more advanced forms of meditation that involve specific techniques merged with energy channelling practices that I share in my Reiki courses, however for now we’ll stick to the basics.
Setting the Atmosphere for your Meditation
Let’s look at how to create the ideal atmosphere to help you with your meditation. You will want to:
- Create an environment and feeling or calm, relaxation and peacefulness
- Make sure the room is warm enough so that you are cosy and not consciously aware of being cold
- Dim the lights, if you wish, however a better idea is to turn them off completely and light a few candles
- Light some scented candles or use aromatherapy essentials oils, as the aromas can help you to relax and unwind your body and mind
- Have your CD to hand or a copy of your guided meditation ready
- Ensure you’re comfortable by either sitting or lying down on a comfortable surface, ensuring you keep your spine straight at all times
With everything ready and set up and with yourself in a comfortable position, start your CD of relaxing music or your guided meditation track and:
- Allow yourself to become aware of yourself and your body, sitting or lying in that one spot of the room
- Start focusing on your breathing, as each breath fills your lungs and then when each breath exhales
- Don’t block out any sounds or thoughts. If you hear something or think something, allow the sound or thought to enter your mind and simply allow it to leave your mind.
- Be aware of how your breathing is becoming slower and deeper and feel all your worries and stresses escape your body with each breath
- Stay still and, with your eyes closed, begin to visualise the pictures the guided CD is helping you to see. If you don’t have a guided meditation track to listen to you will need to picture a calm and peaceful scene in your mind, such as a forest, a lake, a waterfall or anything else that makes you feel calm and at peace
- Try to feel everything about that scene. Smell the blossoms, feel the sun on your face, feel the wind blowing your hair. Make the visualisation as real as you possibly can, as though you were actual there in body
- Now imagine a powerful, white beam of light that flows straight into the top of your head. And feel the warmth and positive feelings as this light fills your body with a brilliant white glow. Like liquid filling up a glass replica of your body. See it and feel it as it runs down to your toes and as it fills up from your feet through your legs and up to your waist
- Visualise and feel it flowing up your belly to your chest and shoulders, bursting with pure white energy as it goes, then flowing down the tops of your arms all the way to your fingers
- Then imagine this wonderful energy creeping up your neck and face to your head where it then starts to over flow and connect with the source of the energy that is flowing in through your head
- Relax and visualise this energy releasing all of your negative energy
How Long Should you Meditate For
Stay in this previous mental state for as long as you wish. Ideally, regular meditation of at least 20 minutes is best. It’s been shown scientifically that it takes a minimum of 20 minutes meditation to have the best effects. But even 5 minutes will have a positive overall effect on your four energy systems.
Try to add 5 minutes on to your meditation time every week. Until you are meditating for anywhere up to an hour. It’s important that you don’t allow yourself to become restless when meditating. So don’t extend the time you meditate if you’re not feeling completely relaxed.
When it comes to returning to your full wide awake self, take your time to gentle come back into the room. If you visualised yourself walking through a scene of nature, now visualise yourself walking back the way you just came. Become aware of all the sensations on your body and be aware of your breath as your lungs fill up and then exhale.
Be aware of the noises you may be able to hear in the room and outside it. Feel and wiggle your fingers and your toes.
As your mind begins to return to where you are sitting, or lying, be aware that at any time you can visualise the path you took in your meditation and immediately return yourself to that place of calm and tranquility.
When you are back in the room fully, open your eyes, sit up and enjoy the peace.
The Health Benefits of Meditation for your Brain
Meditation works by assisting you in controlling the brain wave patterns within your brain. Your brain operates on either Alpha, Beta, Theta or Delta frequencies. And these different frequencies are associated with different mental states of consciousness.
- The Beta wave patterns represent the most intense state of alertness and heightened mental activity. While you are awake your brain operates on a Beta frequency. This gives your brain maximum power to absorb all the information it needs to from your five senses and the world around you.
- The Alpha wave patterns are associated with a relaxed state of mind, relaxed, however still mental conscious and alert. It’s during this state of mental consciousness that we are more susceptible to visions. And we have a greater sense of clarity while becoming more aware of our thoughts, feelings and emotions.
- The next stage of brain activity is known as Theta wave patterns. And once you have meditated into Theta brain frequency you are in a state of deep meditation. In this state you are connected with your intuition and internal guidance and in a state of deep mental awareness. It’s in this state that your body, mind and spirit becomes connected with one another.
- That leaves one last brain wave frequency and that’s the Delta wave pattern. This wave pattern is associated with a deep dreamless state of mind or a very deep state of relaxation. And a feeling of connectedness, a state of oneness and an awareness of your entire body.
Theta and Delta brain wave patterns are very good for our health. That’s why sleep is good for us, as it gives your body and brain time to heal itself.
If you frequently practice meditating you will automatically make noticeable improvements to your health. As well as your mental awareness and your overall sense of well-being.
That’s it for this article and the health benefits of meditation. If you would like to download a free guided meditation, check out my article on Grounding with the Earth. There’s a free guided grounding meditation at the end of the article.
Boost your health with Reiki
Did you know you can improve your meditation benefits with Reiki? Well you sure can! Why not experience your own Distant Reiki Treatment, get answers to all your Reiki question, learn about Reiki and transform your life today! You can also listen to meditation tracks on my YouTube page here.