It’s in the news, medical journals, your Facebook newsfeed; it’s on YouTube, in your inbox, and on your mind. People everywhere are talking about meditation, and it’s not just yogis and hippies who do it. Now entrepreneurs, politicians, musicians, and scientists are spending time practicing mindfulness, too.
Meditation helps manage stress and increase immunity. It also cultivates happiness and enhances optimism. Even so, it can be hard to get motivated if you’re new to it. These reasons will help energize you to start meditating today.
All the Cool Kids Are Doing it
There’s bad peer pressure and then there’s good peer pressure. The good kind has stopped people from smoking, and encouraged exercise and a healthy diet across nations. Now it seems that everywhere you look there’s another celebrity touting the benefits of meditation. Deepak Chopra, Russell Brand, Lady Gaga, Jennifer Aniston, Richard Gere, Ellen DeGeneres, Hugh Jackman, and Kristen Bell are just a few of the celebs who have adopted the practice. Join the club and find out what you’re missing out on.
It Can Make You Feel Like You Have More Time in Your Day
To those people who say they don’t have time to meditate, celebrity meditator and coach Gabrielle Bernstein likes to ask, “Do you have time to feel like crap?” Meditation doesn’t take long—just a few minutes is enough to start enjoying the benefits. And the gains from meditating far outweigh the time it takes. Meditators often feel more invigorated, creative, and "in the flow."
When I feel like I’m rushing from place to place, trying to tick off boxes on an endless to-do list, the first thing I do is sit and breathe until the frenzied feeling dissipates. My heart rate slows, blood pressure lowers, and the production of stress hormones and other chemicals that cause the frenzied feeling all go away. And with them goes that feeling that there isn’t enough time in the day. Of course you aren’t really making more time, just enjoying the benefit of feeling as though there is more time.
It Can Help You Manage Stress
Stress is the body’s reaction to something that comes between you and something you desire. Your body has a physiological response that was designed to help you fight or flee. This worked really well when the primary stressors for humans were concerns of being attacked by another tribe or eaten by a saber tooth tiger. Today, many sources of stress simply set you up for panic, poor health, bad judgment, and diminished creativity.
Meditation can help you react in healthier ways when the fight-or-flight response is triggered by perceived stress. The process of sitting mindfully with your breath can help give you the insight and patience to better asses each situation as it comes up and respond in the most effective way.
It Can Help You Sleep Better
With all the daily worries, it can be hard to turn off your mind at bedtime. Meditation helped me. As a mom of four, a wife, a business owner, a writer, and speaker, there’s always a ton I could be thinking about. Meditation has helped me to feel less like the world revolves around my participation and has enabled me to step back and witness the ebb and flow of activity in my family and at work. I can see the crazy pace but I don’t have to get sucked into it.
If you spend all night mentally organizing your life, you’ll deprive yourself of the sleep you need to get everything done.
It Can Help You Find Your Happy Place
Whether you’re searching for your path in life, your soul mate, or your next grand adventure, meditation is the place to start. By connecting with yourself first and the collective consciousness (that energy we all share) you’re tapping into the source of your ideas and creativity. It’s your potential that manifests through concentrated attention.
When you sit in meditation, you open yourself to connection with the energy that taps into your purpose, your passion, and your creativity.