Meditation is the art of stilling the ‘monkey mind’ – that voice in your head that just won’t shut up and constantly sabotages your happiness and peace of mind. It usually involves sitting quietly for at least 10 minutes and using a technique like focusing attention on the breath or on a silently recited word to give the mind something besides its normal chatter to focus on. This quiets the mind and leads the practitioner into a deeper state of physical and mental relaxation than she would otherwise be able to experience.
The immediate benefit of a meditation session is that you will feel calmer, more relaxed and have a clearer mind. The long-term benefits of meditation have been well researched and documented. They include:
– Decreased occurrence of stress, anxiety, depression, addictions and many other problems
– Increased relaxation and awareness
– Improved immune system and energy levels
– Enhanced self-esteem, self-acceptance and optimism
– Improved mood and emotional intelligence
– Better concentration, decision making and creativity
– Better communication and relationships with others.