In our busy lives today, we have many different things pulling our attention in different directions. Not only do we have multiple tasks, but all aspects of technology are conditioning us to have shorter and shorter attention spans. This increases our levels of stress and robs us of the calm state that we need to regenerate both our bodies and our minds.
Meditation has been found to benefit not only our sense of calm, but also our attention span, our memory and concentration, and our moods. And it does not have to be a complex or complicated practice. Even a few minutes a day of mindful meditation can produce positive physical changes in the body and the brain.
By taking just a few minutes a day to engage in mindful meditation, the brain increases the amount of area devoted to memory, sensation, concentration, and sense of self, while decreasing the areas of fear and ruminating thought. The result is clearer thinking, listening to others more objectively without automatically reacting, an ability to calm the body quickly, and an increased sense of joy. These changes are accompanied by decreases in inflammatory markers in the bloodstream, indicating that it is balancing the endocrine system and the immune system as well.
Meditation comes in many different forms, but most people find that a simple mindful meditation can be easily inserted into their daily routine. Just a few minutes to sit straight, breathe deeply and slowly, and focus just on the breath (or positive mantra) will start shaping the brain and improve your wellbeing. Meditation is a practice that I encourage all of my clients to begin because it is so powerful against combating the stress of our current lives.