How 5 Minutes of Meditation a Day Can Change Your Life  | Escape Haven

How 5 Minutes of Meditation a Day Can Change Your Life 

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Any health-related blog, newspaper, magazine or podcast you read or listen to these days will most likely mention meditation. If you were to ask a diverse number of health professionals which is the best way in which we can positively benefit our health and wellbeing in general, a vast majority would be quick to mention that one simple word: meditation.

Meditation tends to come later in our journey to wellness. Sometimes the lower hanging fruit – healthy food, exercise, even yoga – tend to take up a greater focus. Yet meditation seems to be what ties everything together. Meditation is what completes the circle of holistic wellbeing. We spend a great deal of time and money looking after our physical health, and yet looking after our mental and emotional health can often take a backseat. The best thing about meditation is it is easy, simple, enjoyable and suitable for absolutely anyone. Everyone at every stage of life can benefit from a meditation practice.

The benefits of meditation are vast and offer both short- and long-term results. Reduced anxiety, better sleep patterns, more clarity, a greater connection to self as well as others, more patience, more compassion, and a greater ability to slow down and simply be present, no matter what life offers – these are just a few benefits that come to mind.

Experts agree that meditation is indeed a powerful practice, and comprehensive scientific studies have shown that the deep relaxation that comes with meditation has a very positive impact on our health. Let’s explore some of these in more detail:

Increased Immunity:

Researchers at Harvard Medical School discovered that meditation has the power and ability to change the body on a genetic level. Long-term practitioners of relaxation methods such as yoga and meditation were shown to have far more ”disease-fighting genes.” ‘The study showed that within two months of developing a meditation practice, the genes that help fight inflammation, kill diseased cells and protect the body from cancer all began to activate within the body.

Improved Sleep:

Sleep disturbances affect millions of people around the world and for many, these sleep disorders are closely related to stress. A 2015 study demonstrated that meditation can help to eliminate those restless nights. The research proved that participants that followed a daily meditation practice experienced reduced levels of insomnia, fatigue and depression by the end of just six sessions.

Pain Management:

Stress and pain are closely related. Meditation has the ability to increase pain tolerance while also decreasing anxiety, depression, and the use of pain medications. Mindfulness meditation has been used successfully as a pain management technique for people who suffer from a variety of conditions, including headaches, lower back pain, chest pain, and gastrointestinal discomfort.

Lower Blood Pressure:

In the past 30 years, approximately 600 studies have been conducted worldwide on the effects of meditation on blood pressure. These studies have discovered that meditation can lower blood pressure by making the body less responsive to stress hormones, in a similar way to blood pressure-lowering medication.

Increased Fertility:

When a female’s body is in constant stress, blood flow is directed towards the muscles and away from the uterus and ovaries, meaning the reproductive system does not function at its optimum level. Studies have proven that women are far more likely to conceive when they are in a relaxed state, and doctors and fertility experts around the world are advising women to introduce meditation as a means to assist conception. Similarly, relaxation may also boost male fertility as stress has been shown to lower sperm count.

Improved Digestion:

The digestive system is one of the biological processes most affected when the body is tense and anxious. Stress can wreak havoc on the gut, causing inflammation, acid reflux, ulcers, and even food allergies. By calming the mind and body, meditation allows for a deep level of relaxation that significantly enhances the digestive system’s efficiency. Patients with IBS have found that practicing a relaxation meditation twice daily significantly improves symptoms of bloating, diarrhea and constipation.

Emotional Wellbeing:

The body is a direct reflection of the mind and it can only achieve true calm when the mind is truly calm; meditation can help to achieve this. Meditation has been shown to assist with self-acceptance, self-confidence, personal growth, and an increased sense of purpose. It can help to alleviate depression, negativity and addictions. Meditation can help to build compassion, understanding, forgiveness and overall happiness. When it comes to mental and emotional wellbeing, meditation is one of the easiest and most effective ways to find balance, peace and content.

As you can see, meditation plays a key role in holistic health. Meditation helps to pave the way to superior wellness in body, mind and spirit. The best part is that introducing a meditation practice into your life needn’t be overwhelming nor intimidating. It doesn’t require any special equipment and is simple to learn. Try to create a practice that works for you and your lifestyle. This can be as easy as setting aside five minutes each day to sit, breathe, let go and truly relax.

Research has shown that just five minutes of meditation a day is enough to help clear the mind, improve mood, boost brain function, reduce stress, slow down the ageing process and support a healthy metabolism.

Some days you may have more time, and other days you may have less. Some days your mind may wander while other days there is a greater sense of peace. The key comes down to making meditation a priority. There is an old Buddism saying that says: ‘you should meditate for 20 minutes, unless you don’t have time, then you should meditate for an hour.’ It is a clever saying; the busier we are, the more we need to make time for these moments of stillness and peace.

Try setting your alarm a little earlier each day and sitting quietly before your day begins. Find a space in your home or nature where you feel comfortable and can be in your own space. Dedicate this time to yourself daily, knowing that you are worthy of these moments. With so many benefits, there is every reason to find five minutes a day to make meditation a part of your daily life.

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