I do not know about you but when I hear the word meditation I get pictures in my mind of Buddhist monks, monasteries, and very uncomfortable cross-legs. I get those pictures and I've been a regular meditator for nearly two decades. I'm either a monk nor capable of sitting in the lotus position.
I started meditating because I suffered from chronic anxiety. The meditation was a significant factor in healing that problem. I do it nowdays because of the benefits it continues to bring.
You see meditation is quite amazing in how, over time, it brings about powerful beneficial changes to physical and mental health. The problem with meditation is that you can not get it in a bottle or a blister pack. Unfortunately, in order to obtain the benefits, you actually have to do something that takes up some of your valuable time. You need to set some some me time when you are left alone and refuse to respond to interruptions.
Then you have to do something really boring like focusing on your breathing, or repeating a word or phrase (mantra) over and over again. It's so dull that much more interesting thoughts keep on wandering across your mind to try to liven up the proceedings. So it can seem really difficult – at least when you first start. But this is not a how to meditate so I will not go into that. This is more about a why to meditate .
So let's look at some of the benefits.
- Blood pressure reduction (without medication)
- Reduces pre-menstrual symptoms
- Helps you lose weight
- Slows down aging
- Boosts serotonin (so no need for prozac or other SSRIs)
- Boosts sense of discomfort
- Improves tolerance
- Reduces stress
- Boosts immune system function
- Harmonises mind body and spirit
It also has no negative side effects, unlike many of the drugs that only help with some of these problems.
So if you want to get started then all you need to do is to decide that you are going to meditate regularly and decide on the time. One of the easiest ways to get started, which removes a lot of the difficulties encountered by beginners, is to actually use a Guided Meditation. With a guided meditation you listened to a recording and are guided as to what to focus your mind on. I find that when I listen to a guided meditation I can relax to a much deeper level because someone else is in charge. It's a bit like going on a coach tour. Someone else has done all the work and found the best places to visit. Someone else does the driving – all you have to do is sit back, relax and enjoy the ride. Then, at the end you feel so much better.