Studies show one great thing about meditation: that not only is it good for our mental health, it also has a positive impact on us physically. According to research, it can reduce stress, help lower anxiety levels, improve sleep, and even decrease blood pressure to name a few of its many benefits. But with so many types of meditations out there, which one is right for you? In today’s list, we pick out our top three!
Does your mind tend to wander all the time? Do you feel like your brain is all over the place, unable to move on from the past, stressing over the present, and worrying about the future? If this is the type of mental chatter you deal with on the daily, then it’s time for some mindful meditation.
Day to day, our minds are bombarded with so many things that we often don’t have time to sit down and listen to ourselves. But with this type of meditation, we’re able to focus on breathing, what we’re feeling, as well as what we’re seeing – all without going anywhere beyond or deeper. An article published by Harvard best describes what mindful meditation is: every time your mind starts to wander, mindfulness will help you come back, rest, and settle your mind.
Stress manifests itself in many different ways, even physically. Sometimes we don’t even notice it turning into tension that renders us more tired than we really are so that we’re incapable of doing anything else as our day draws to a close. With the help of progressive relaxation however, we’re able to relax our muscle groups one at a time in a specific pattern – but by way of tightening the muscles first. It may sound counterintuitive to start relaxation by tensing up, but this actually helps us become familiar and recognize what muscle tension is like, making it easier for us to identify whenever we’re stressed in the future.
Here’s a great reference to follow for the meantime while you haven’t memorized each muscle group. Alternatively, you can also look for an audio guide.
Have you ever seen someone doing Tai chi? Originally a martial art, it’s a perfect example of movement meditation. Just like other types, the slow and graceful movements involved in this meditation is not just for show: it’s a great way to focus and reconnect the mind and the body. With so much to do, we often move on auto-pilot, our minds and bodies no longer connected or moving as one. Movement meditation can change that.
One of the greatest benefits of movement meditation is related to mental health, according to Harvard, and is a great treatment alongside psychotherapy and medication.
These are just three of the meditation types we prefer, but there are others to choose from depending on your preference. No matter which one you choose though, it’s undeniable: the benefits are tried, tested, and proven to help you in your pursuit of a happier, healthier life!