If you’re tuned into the wellness movement then you’ll be aware that we are all being prescribed 10 minutes of daily meditation, to help combat the stressors of daily life. To keep us sane we may start our day with coffee and end it with ice cream but taking just 10 minutes out will truly transform your day. We understand that not everyone always has a MiiRO ice cream handy at all times to soothe your soul, so we looked into a solution that would always be available to you. Here at the office we’ve started incorporating this into our day by pausing before lunch, and we’ve already noticed benefits.
You may have reserved meditation for only those who burn incense, or maybe you’ve already dabbled with the Headspace app but it hasn’t quite stuck, or perhaps you’ve kept meditation in your periphery and you’re open to the idea of trying something new. Either way, be kind to yourself and try adding meditation to your daily routine. It requires zero specialist equipment or space and it’s free. Ice cream may be cheaper than therapy, but meditation is cheaper still.
If you’re not sure meditation is for you or need a recap, here’s a brief summary of why meditation could be the life changing habit you need to take on.
1. Meditation is the one known use of time which actually refunds your time back to you. Not only can it make you more productive, a study by the International Journal of Neuroscience found that meditation drastically reduces your biological age (how old you seem). The study found that people who started meditating when they’re 30, reduced their biological age to 23 by the time they were 35. Whereas those who did not mediate had a biological age of 36. Thank goodness we’re only as old as we feel!
2. Focussing your attention during meditation helps increase the strength and endurance of the mind. Whilst we’re on the topic of shocking statistics, did you know on average we spend 47% of our time lost in thought?! That’s almost half our life that we aren’t engaged with. Attention span is becoming an increasing issue, due to the constant stream of information both at our finger tips and being bombarded at us in all other directions. With meditation, you can reorient and maintain your attention. This links to discipline and willpower, also allowing you to redirect triggers of unwanted habits or cravings. (See our Mindfulness blog post for more details on this.)
3. Meditation has been found to help reduce anxiety; both symptoms of an anxiety disorder and job-related anxiety in high pressure work environments. Stress reduction is one of the most common reasons people try meditation. Cortisol (the stress hormone) affects sleep, promotes depression and anxiety along with increasing blood pressure. So, we’re all looking to reduce our cortisol levels for a happier and healthier life.
4. Studies have also shown that participants who meditate fall asleep sooner and stay asleep for longer. The blissful idea of quality sleep can be brought on by controlling spiralling thoughts and the release of tension in our body.
5. Self-image can also be improved by meditation as it promotes a positive outlook on life. One area of life that can be universally useful to improve is the enhancement of self-awareness. By developing a stronger understanding of yourself, it gives you the tools to grow into your best self.
Don’t Know Where To Start?
Take 10 minutes out each day to step back and familiarise yourself with the present moment. Your overall aim is to experience a greater sense of focus, calm and clarity in your life. Being present is not easy. Your attention typically gets diverted after around 5 seconds and supressing the wondering thoughts only makes you think about it more. It is a myth that you are only meditating successfully when your mind is still, so do not beat yourself up about your mind naturally wandering. When you get diverted, gently bring your focus back to your breathing. Be patient, allow yourself 10 minutes a day to cultivate your inner peace and happiness, which in turn will ripple out and impact your life.
Remember: What you practice grows stronger.
People are just as happy as they make up their minds to be.
— Abraham Lincoln