The practice of meditation offers a sense of heightened awareness and relaxation. Many studies have shown that meditation is one of the most effective ways of temporary stress relief. Other benefits of meditation are reducing anxiety, stress, and depression.
Regular practice of meditation improves your physical wellbeing and emotional health. It also helps to improve the strength and endurance of your attention. For older adults, practicing meditation offers a lot of benefits, one of which is reducing memory loss due to age.
Several studies have proven that practicing meditation helps to overcome anxiety by controlling its symptoms. Meditation will give you a more positive outlook on your life by improving your self-image. Moreover, the regular practice of meditation improves your optimism and positive thinking.
Meditation has other health benefits also. It helps to lower your blood pressure and improve your heart health. Meditation also helps to break dependencies and fight drug and alcohol addictions.
There are different types of meditation. Let’s take a look at some of the different forms of meditations.
This type of meditation is also called body scan meditation. The main goal of progressive relaxation is to notice tension in your body and allow it to release. The practitioners of progressive relaxation usually start from their feet and gradually work through the whole body. This form of meditation helps you to experience a sense of calmness and relaxation.
Also known as Metta meditation, the goal of loving-kindness meditation is to create an attitude of love and kindness in you. Deep breathes are an essential part of loving-kindness meditation, which open the minds of the practitioners to receive loving-kindness. This type of meditations promotes feelings of love and compassion. It also helps to reduce your anger and frustration.
Breath Awareness Meditation
The practitioners of breath awareness meditations breathe deeply and slowly, focusing on their breaths. The main goal of breath awareness meditation is to ignore all the negative thoughts on your mind by focusing only on your breath. This type of meditation helps to reduce anxiety and improves your concentration. Breath awareness meditation also allows you to have great emotional flexibility.
This form of meditation allows the practitioners to remain present at the moment and helps create awareness about your existing surroundings. You can practice mindfulness meditation anywhere. Mindfulness meditation helps to improve your focus and memory and allows to reduce your negative thoughts and emotions. Some studies are showing that mindfulness meditation is also beneficial for your health.
This type of meditation is a part of Buddhist practice. This meditation involves certain steps and postures that can only be learned from an experienced Zen practitioner. The practice of Zen meditation involves the finding of a comfortable position and mindfully observing your thoughts without any judgment. The main goal of Zen meditation is to seek relaxation and a new spiritual path.
This is a physically active form of meditation exercise, which is a blend of specific movements with deep breaths and mantras. This type of meditation can reduce your pain and improve your physical strength. Kundalini yoga is also beneficial in improving your mental health by reducing your anxiety and depression. A study conducted on veterans in the year 2008 showed that yoga helps to reduce lower back pain, increases energy, and also improved the overall mental health of veterans.
The goal of this type of meditation is to rise above your current state of being. During transcendental meditation, the practitioner remains seated and takes slow breaths, and focus on the repeated word. The word used in the meditation, or the mantra, is usually selected by the teacher. It is reported that those who practice transcendental meditation regularly have spiritual experiences and heightened mindfulness.
This type of meditation involves the concentration of using any of your five senses. You can practice this meditation by counting beads or listening to a gong. Focused meditation is not as easy as it sounds. Beginners find it extremely hard to maintain their focus for more than four or five minutes. This form of meditation is ideal for those who are seeking additional focus in their life.
In Hindu and Buddhist traditions, mantra meditation is very prominent. Mantra meditation involves the use of a repetitive sound for clearing your mind. Most often the sound used in mantra meditation is “Om”. When you chant the sound or mantra for some time, you will become more alert to your surroundings, which allows you to experience the deeper levels of awareness.
This type of meditation aims at your eventual transformation by allowing you to use your concentration for intensely examining some specific aspects of your existence. This meditation forces us to contemplate certain areas of our existence, like suffering, emptiness, non-self, impermanence, etc. and find insight into the actual nature of our reality.