There are many good reasons for practising meditation. The list can go on and here are just a few of the main benefits of it.
1. Reduce Stress
Taking care of your babies and toddlers can be stressful, especially during the days when they are unwell. Mental and physical stress can cause increased levels of the stress hormone cortisol. This produces many of the harmful effects of stress, such as disrupt sleep, promote depression and anxiety, increase blood pressure and contribute to fatigue and cloudy thinking.
Research including over 3,500 adults showed that meditation lives up to its reputation for stress reduction. When we meditate, over time the brain learns how to stabilise the autonomic nervous system in everyday life without having to switch into the fight or flight response when faced with challenges or demands.
2. Helps you focus
Meditating allows you to learn how to discipline yourself and this will reflect in your everyday lifestyle. When you address tasks, your mind will focus more naturally and you will experience an increased efficiency.
A study showed that human resource workers who regularly practiced mindfulness meditation stayed focused on a task for longer. These workers also remembered details of their tasks better than their peers who did not practice meditation.
3. Improves Sleep
Meditation enhance slow wave sleep pattern, which can help fight insomnia. By focussing the mind on mental and physical processes will aid relaxation and consequently, sleep.
One study compared two mindfulness-based meditation programs by randomly assigning participants to one of two groups. One group practiced meditation, while the other didn't.
Participants who meditated fell asleep sooner and stayed asleep longer, compared to those who didn't meditate.
4. Decrease Blood Pressure
Research has also shown that meditation can reduce blood pressure, both in the short term and later in life. By decreasing psychological stress and increasing coping ability, blood pressure decreases, helping you pursue a healthier life.
It is good to know that blood pressure decreases not only during meditation, but also over time in individuals who meditate regularly. In the long run, this can reduce strain on the heart and arteries, helping prevent heart disease.
5. Promotes Emotional Health
Last but not least, practising meditation will make you happier. Study show that meditation can lead to an improved self-image and more positive outlook on life. Meditation causes the pituitary gland in our brain to secrete endorphins that help elevate mood and have a positive effect on the whole body. It also alters brain activity to enhance the area associated with positive emotional experiences.