“The purpose of mindfulness meditation is to become mindful throughout all parts of our life, so that we’re awake, present and open-hearted in everything we do,” said Tara Brach, a popular meditation teacher based near Washington, D.C. Meditation is a powerful set of techniques for calming and quieting the mind using a mode of consciousness where the practitioner is focused on one thing—sitting and breathing rather than active thinking. Spending a few minutes per day, maybe every morning before work or on the way home, listening to basic guided meditations can help reduce stress. Meditating is not a race to perfection—It’s focusing and returning again to the breath.
Alpha brain waves
Brain waves are measured by frequency, which is cycles per second, or hertz (Hz). When human brains produce alpha waves, they’re responding to activities like meditation and rest that can reduce your stress levels and help you feel calmer. These waves measure between 8 and 12 Hz.
According to studies, meditation helps increase the alpha brain waves and reduce depression symptoms in people affected by major depressive disorder (MDD).
Body scan meditation
It is a brief body awareness practice for tuning in to sensations from head-to-toe. Research shows that stress reduction is one of the primary benefits of body scan meditation, which in turn can have physical benefits including reduced inflammation, fatigue, and insomnia.
An abbreviated version of body scan meditation is just sitting and noticing any place in the body that feels tense. When you realize you’re starting to nod off, take a deep breath to help you reawaken and perhaps reposition your body.
It involves focusing closely on the physical experience of walking and paying attention to the specific components of each step. The recommended time is 10 minutes daily for at least a week. Evidence suggests that mindfulness increases the more you practice it.
Integrating walking meditation into your daily life
For many people, slow, formal walking meditation is an acquired taste. Keep in mind that you can also bring mindfulness to walking at any speed in your everyday life, and even to running, though of course the pace of your steps and breath will change. Paying closer attention to the process of walking can also increase our sense of appreciation and enjoyment of our physical bodies.
(sometimes called “metta” meditation) involves mentally sending goodwill, kindness, and warmth towards others by silently repeating a series of
People who practiced loving-kindness meditation daily for seven weeks reported a steady increase in their daily experience of positive emotions, such as joy, gratitude, contentment, hope, and love. They also reported greater life satisfaction and lower depressive symptoms following the intervention, compared to when they started.
Keeping your eyes closed, imagine that you are surrounded on all sides by all the people who love you. They are sending wishes for your happiness, well-being, and health. You are filled, and overflowing with warmth and love.
Progressive muscle relaxation
When you’re experiencing anxiety, stress, or worry, one of the ways your body responds is by tightening up. Progressive muscle relaxation is a relaxation technique that helps release the tension you’re holding in your body and feel more relaxed and calm. The technique is simple: work through the body, tense one muscle group at a time and then release the tension and notice the contrasting feeling of relaxation. Not only does progressive muscle relaxation help relieve anxiety in the moment, but with regular practice, it can also lower overall tension and stress levels.
Visualisation involves using mental imagery to achieve a more relaxed state of mind. Similar to daydreaming, visualization is accomplished through the use of your imagination. These regular practices can help when you start feeling the physical symptoms of panic and anxiety.
White sandy beach
Imagine that you are resting on a white sandy beach and feel safe and calm. Relax your face and let go of any tension. Soften your eyes and rest. Allow your breath to slow down and match the rolling waves of the water. There is no effort to be here; spend time just taking it all in.
Tips for meditation
1. Find a place where you can sit comfortably and quietly.
2. Close your eyes and do nothing for a minute or so. Thoughts may come during that time, and that is okay.
3. Listening to quiet, instrumental music as you meditate will help you focus your thoughts on something as simple as concentrating on breathing. Try to synchronize your breath with the beat of the music.
The first trial — 1 minute meditation