Meditation has been practiced for thousands of years, and millions of people around the world use this form of “exercise” to calm their bodies and mind. However, doctor Herbert Benson developed the meditative technique called relaxation response back in the 1970s.
Since our bodies are exposed to a lot of stress, we need something that will help us sleep better and alter our state of consciousness. While some people use drugs, they can be harmful and cause severe side-effects.
For that reason, in this article, we will discuss the benefits of meditation, and also different types of this technique.
What is meditation?
Meditation is usually defined as the set of techniques which boost people’s awareness and improves their attention. There are some essential things you should know about this technique before you fully engage in this journey.
- Mediation is popular all over the world, and it has been present for thousands of years
- All religions use meditative practices
- While it’s used for religious purposes, many people choose to practice it independently
- Mediation has psychotherapeutic effects
Type of meditation
This technique has several forms, but there are two main types: mindfulness meditation and concentrative meditation. But how do these two forms differ?
- Concentrative meditation – your focus should be on a specific object while blocking everything else around you. Your goal here is to experience your surroundings, whether it’s a particular word, your breath, or mantra you are repeating. In this case, you can achieve a higher state of being.
- Mindfulness meditation – this form is focused more on healing properties and targets various health issues such as depression. In this case, you are involved in the present, accepting, open, and aware.
The benefits of meditation
There have been numerous studies trying to prove the benefits of meditation. So far, scientists managed to discover that this technique has physical and psychological effects. They involve a reduced state of physical arousal, lower heart rate, reduced respiration rate, and lower stress levels.
On the other hand, health-related and emotional benefits of meditation include the following things:
- Improved stress management skills
- Enhanced stress-awareness
- Better management of conditions such as sleep disorders, anxiety, pain issues, and high blood pressure
- Improved attention and memory
Meditation is often connected to our inner being, and it can alter your state of consciousness, how you perceive things, and respond to the world around you. For that reason, many people around the world started practicing this technique.
How to start with meditation?
If you are beginner, then these tips will help you start meditating:
- Sit or lie comfortably; you can use a chair, cushion, or anything you like
- Close your eyes; we recommend you use a sleeping mask to avoid opening your eyes
- Don’t control your breath, just try to breathe naturally
- Focus on your body and how it moves it each breath you take
- Pay attention to your ribs, chest, belly, and rib cage
- They to maintain this process for at least three minutes and then later try it for more extended periods