Meditation For Mental Health and Much More!
What it meditation?
There are many different definition for meditation and they are all tricky and hard to understand, but let’s make it simple: meditation is being present in the moment, it’s a moment you dedicate to yourself to disconnect and reconnect.
Main Benefits of Meditation for Mental Health
Here comes a list of the main benefits of meditation for mental health with some useful sources for you to use to learn more about this incredible practice and also to choose what’s the best practice for you.
Practicing Meditation Regulates Mood Disorders and Reduces Anxiety
This is the conclusion of more than 20 controlled studies drawn from the PubMed, PsycInfo, and Cochrane databases, involving techniques of meditation, meditative prayer, yoga and relaxation response. Research concludes that mindfulness meditation can be effective in treating anxiety at a similar level to antidepressant drug therapy.
Sources: The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, Jama Network
Meditation Reduces Stress and Anxiety in General
A study conducted at the University of Wisconsin-Madison observed how "Open Monitoring" meditation practices (such as Vipassana) reduce the density of gray matter in areas of the brain related to anxiety and stress. Those who meditated were able to "follow the flow of stimuli to which the group was subjected moment by moment and showed a lower inclination to 'get stuck' on any stimulus." Open Monitoring meditation involves non-reactive monitoring of the meditation experience from moment to moment, this is mainly used as a means of recognizing the nature of emotional and cognitive models. There are other studies with very similar results, all of which can be found in the links to the sources below.
Sources: NCBI, Wiley Online Library, The American Journal of Psychiatry, ScienceDirect, American Psychological Association, American Psychosomtic Medicine Journal, Medical News Today
Meditation Increases the Concentration of Gray Matter in the Brain
A group of Harvard neuroscientists conducted an experiment in which 16 individuals underwent an eight-week mindfulness course, using guided meditations and integrating awareness into their daily activities. The results were reported by Dr. Sara Lazar. At the end of the experiment, magnetic resonances showed an increase in the concentration of gray matter in the areas of the brain involved in learning and memory. Similar findings were found in other areas that regulate emotions, sense of self and perspective. Other studies, similarly, show an increase in gray matter in the hippocampus and frontal lobe in people who meditate regularly.
Sources: Psychiatry Research Neuroimaging, ScienceDirect
Mindfulness Reduces The Feeling Of Loneliness
A study conducted by Carnegie Mellon University indicates that mindfulness is useful in reducing feelings of loneliness, consequently mitigates the risk of obesity, mortality and the expression of pro-inflammatory genes.
A simple method to meditate in one of its popular guides, the Harvard Medical School in Boston proposes a simple method for meditating, carving out ten to twenty minutes every day, if possible always at the same time. The commitment should go on for a week, at the end of which a balance is made and a decision is made whether to continue or give up the practice.
Here are the indications of the American manual: «To begin, sit or lie down comfortably, closing your eyes if you like. Silently repeat a word, sound, prayer or phrase, such as "peace", "Om" or "breathe in calmly". Let your thoughts wander, silently repeating your sound. Now slowly relax your muscles, gradually shifting your attention from your face to your feet. Keep repeating the sound silently and breathing effortlessly and naturally for 10-20 minutes. After you are finished, sit, still in silence, for a minute or so with your eyes closed. So, open your eyes and wait another minute before getting up. '
Meditate In The Morning: Start Your Energy At Its Best
Meditation is amazing not only for better mental health but also for all of us who want to start their day on the right foot, with a calm energized and focused mind!
Surely the attitude with which you start your days will have a great impact on the progress of the activities you will have to carry out, whether they are related to study, work, family, etc. Anticipating the moment of awakening and carrying out activities that charge you with positive energy and direct your thoughts towards the set goals, is certainly a winning strategy.
Ring the alarm and start your day. You decide whether to get out of bed already in a bad mood because you are still sleepy and would like to turn over on the other side of the bed or if you want to start on the right foot, full of energy and motivation to better face a new day.
The truth is that it takes very little to start the day badly by getting carried away by the weight of daily activities and commitments: take the children to school, reach the office in the midst of traffic, run to the gym on lunch break, remember to do the shopping and to prepare dinner to feed the family before putting everyone to bed. Is this the day that you too find yourself facing on average? In truth there are not many solutions, the days are 24 hours, at least 7-8 we have to rest and in the remaining hours we have to fit a certain number of activities, pleasant and less pleasant.
What you can change is the way to deal with all of this, starting right in the morning in the best way possible: relaxing and breathing deeply, that is, dedicating part of your time to meditation. To meditate you don't need to wake up at 4am in the morning, just 5 minutes can be enough to start the day in the right way and prepare your mind for everything that awaits you in the following hours!
As soon as you wake up, sitting on the bed, sit cross-legged with your back straight. Place your hands on your knees with your palms facing up and your thumb and forefinger touching. Begin to inhale and exhale. As you breathe deeply, you can also do an exercise in gratitude: be happy because today is a new day and is a new opportunity to take an extra step towards your goals.
After your meditation, try another exercise to exercise mindfulness: while sipping your breakfast coffee, while brushing your teeth, while doing your exercises in the gym, but also while walking to your children's office or school.
It may happen that you forget to do it, but try to do it as many times as possible because it will allow you to remove the daily stress and live in a brand new mindful way!
CBD and Meditation
Why not enhance your quest for better mental health by supplementing your new daily meditation with CBD? Cannabidiol will work together in harmony with practices such as meditation and other holistic therapies. Simply 30 minutes to 1 hour before you meditate, take several drops under the tongue and enjoy a meditation session on steroids.
We have one of the CBD oils on the market which will be complimentary to your mental health journey, click here to choose your product today!
Please note that this article was written by a 3rd-party author who is a specialist on the topic of CBD, hemp and cannabis. Any information or recommendations contained within this article, are independent to the opinion of RUDERALEX CBD and our employees. We make no claims for any of our products, please read our disclaimer for additional information.