You have most probably heard more than once that meditation reduces stress and increases calmness, but you might have thought that meditation is not for you.
Have you tried practicing meditation? It is not as difficult as it might appear to you, and it is not a strange and weird practice. There are many people, all around the world, who practice meditation for various reasons. In this article, I will focus on the reasons why meditation reduces stress.
Why does meditation relieve stress? What does it do to your mind and to your body? When convinced of its usefulness, there is a greater chance of trying it.
Why Meditation Reduces Stress and Increases Calmness?
1. Meditation is usually practiced in a quiet place, away from distractions and noises, and this helps calm the mind and the body. When the mind and body are calm, the stress and anxiety levels tend to drop down.
2. The effects of meditation stay with you long after the meditation, affecting your mind and actions, making you more relaxed and calm, and more tolerant and patient. These of course, tend to relieve stress.
3. When you sleep, you forget all your troubles and everything that is causing you stress. Sleep relaxes the body and the mind, making it easier to cope with stress. Meditation has the same effect.
Sometimes, stress makes it difficult to fall asleep. Since meditation relaxes, it makes it easier to fall asleep at night. It might seem strange to you, but once you turn meditation into a habit, you will need less sleep to relax.
4. While meditating, you try to stop following every thought that pops up into your mind. You try to avoid focusing on matters that create stress and make you worry. This gives your mind a few minutes freedom from stress. It is like going on a vacation.
As you repeat this action, day after day, the effect begins to linger on, long afterwards, and a stress-free life becomes a fact.
5. Repeated practice, gives you control over your mind and your thoughts, and enables you to choose the thoughts you want and reject the thoughts that you do not want.
If you focus on stressful thoughts, stress would increase. However, if you focus on happiness, peace and positive thoughts, they would increase and replace stress.
6. Stress and strain are like an ocean with high waves tossing a boat from waves to wave. When the ocean becomes calm, the boat can sail in the desired direction with no danger or fear. Meditation calms down the ocean of your mind, relaxes your mind, and enables you to think and act calmly and with common sense.
7. Many researches have been conducted on the effects of meditation. There are many articles on the Internet, which speak about various experiments and researches made on meditation.
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Rebecca Gladding M.D. also writes about this topic in her article, “This Is Your Brain on Meditation”.
In her article, she writes, “I’m sure you’ve heard people extol the virtues of meditation. You may be skeptical of the claims that it helps with all aspects of life. But, the truth is, it does.”
“Sitting every day, for at least 15-30 minutes, makes a huge difference in how you approach life, how personally you take things and how you interact with others. It enhances compassion, allows you to see things more clearly (including yourself) and creates a sense of calm and centeredness that is indescribable. There really is no substitute.”
You can find more information about the effects other studies, at the “Meditation Programs for Psychological Stress and Well-being”.
8. Meditation improves your health and the immune system. This of course, affects your emotional and mental health, and reduces stress, making it easier to handle tasks and deal with problems.
9. Meditation improves your concentration, memory and all the mental functions. This means that you can handle more calmly and with more control the daily affairs of life, work, relationships, tasks and goals.
Scienceofpeople.com says, “One study tested a variety of different meditation types, including Transcendental Meditation, Vipassana, Tibetan Buddhist Meditation, Sufi Meditation and Hindu Meditation, and found that they all improve focus by varying degrees.”
10. There is a strong connection between inner peace and happiness. As your inner peace level increases, so does your happiness. In a state of inner peace, there are fewer disturbing and distracting thoughts, fewer worries, and less stress. In this state, happiness can easily manifest, without obstructions.
Meditation creates inner peace, and this leads to happiness and to a feeling of joy, even if there are no external factors for happiness.
These are just a few of the reasons why meditation reduces stress and increase calmness, and why you need to learn to practice it. In my book, “Peace of Mind in the Busy Daily Life”, I have addressed this topic. This book shows, in a simple language and through easy to follow instructions, how to reduce stress and anxiety and make your mind peaceful.
In another book, “Calm Down the Constant Chatter of Your Mind”, I have included a few meditation techniques to help you calm your mind.