EVERYONE WANTS TO KNOW—
What are the cold, hard truths of mindfulness meditation?
While there are many psychological and physiological benefits to meditation (and I could truly talk about them for hours) the saying is a picture is worth a thousand words.
So rather than tell you, I’ll show you all the good meditation could do.
First, let’s bust a few meditation myths:
You don’t have to practice Buddhism or Hinduism in order to meditate mindfully, anyone can do it! However, the roots of the practice are from those religions, so it’s good to learn about them and expand your knowledge.
You don’t have to sit in lotus position, or chant for hours in order to meditate. In fact, if that’s an uncomfortable position for you it could even be detrimental to your mindfulness.
You don’t have to keep an empty mind. With mindfulness meditation, Instead of pushing thoughts away,, you can simply notice when thoughts arise. Sometimes those thoughts include planning, or remembering, or worrying. Having LOTS of thoughts doesn’t mean you are “bad” at meditating, it’s just what is happening at the moment!
If we take a look at the physiological and psychological benefits of mindfulness meditation we’ll find they are separated out into a few categories:
The amygdala (the part of your brain that processes emotions) calms down.
Mindfulness meditation can reduce stress and increase serotonin (which means a better, more stable mood).
The Reticular formation, Frontal lobe, Thalamus, and Parietal lobe all showed reduced activity (these are the centers that acquire sensory data and decide how to handle it, or how to stress about it.)
As this article from Harvard Medical says, “what’s good for the mind is what’s good for the heart.”
What about everything else?
Basically, anything that is caused by stress (acne, ulcers, anxiety, depression, muscle pain, joint pain, etc.) can be helped by including mindfulness meditation into your day.
If you need a little extra help meditating, or aren’t sure where to start, check out some of the services I provide! From my home studio in Tampa Bay I offer yoga and meditation classes (both personal and corporate), as well as workshops for MBSR. If you’re not in the Tampa Bay area I have several online classes available through Zoom Meeting.
Be sure to follow me @lotusheartmindfulness on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest for more mindfulness inspiration!