Meditation is a practice that is most associated with yoga and other similar practices. “Yoga and meditation” together is not an uncommon pair. When we think of meditation, the first image that comes to the mind is of a long-bearded man, a yogi, sitting on a yoga mat with your legs crossed like a pretzel, and your eyes shut. The common misconception about meditation is that it requires a person to rid themselves of all their thoughts and that when they close their eyes to meditate, the mind must be clear and blank. However, this is not true. Instead, meditation is actually about getting in touch with your inner self and your thoughts. Meditation improves health
What Is Meditation?
To define the term meditation, it refers to a mental exercise through which one may contemplate or reflect on their thoughts. Meditation involves focusing on a single point by doing away with all distractions. This can be by heightening your five bodily senses and by doing the same in your head. Meditation comprises of breathing naturally while centering your thoughts.
There are different methods of practicing meditation. While variations exist, the general purpose of meditation remains the same – to focus the mind and increase sharpness and awareness. Some of these methods are as follows.
–Single-pointed meditation: this is when attention is pulled to a single point, be it a single thought or a single object. It can be anything at all, but it must be a single thing on which to focus. You should ignore all the thoughts distracting you from this thought during the practice. For example, you could focus on any mantra.
–Open focus meditation: here, you do not focus on one idea. Instead, you close your eyes, breathe, and allow your thoughts to flow naturally. Do not try to stop or engage your thoughts during open focus meditation; just go with the flow.
–Cultivation meditation: it is practiced when you want a plant an idea in your mind, or “cultivate” a thought. Using cultivation meditation, you can teach yourself qualities such as kindness, compassion, or others.
Additionally, there are many websites, like Youtube and apps, such as Calm, that provide audio clips for meditation. You can choose from either calming background music, such as the sounds of nature, or clips where a person is speaking in the background and guiding you through your meditation. Guided meditation is an excellent tool for people who are only starting meditation and meditation practices.
How Meditation Improves Health
Meditation is a practice followed by millions of people around the world to help them focus and center themselves. It is proven that meditation helps to increase one’s attention span and also helps to increase memory power. It is not necessary to meditate for hours and hours a day. Even about ten minutes a day of meditation daily is sufficient to make a person more aware and attentive. The attention you pay to different things plays a significant role in how you live your life. Whenever we pay attention to something (which is generally one thing out of many things around us), it is a choice to make. With meditation, we can make a better choice as to where we are directing our attention. Meditation is often linked with practices for mental health, as well. Meditation and mindfulness are also commonly used practices by therapists to battle depression and anxiety disorders, as it calms the mind down from thinking intrusive and disruptive thoughts. This is how meditation improves health.