Whether or not we believe in the healing powers of meditation, we have nothing to lose when it comes to treating the stressors associated with a long work week. Here are six proven ways taking some time out for yourself can make your daily grind more manageable, enjoyable and ultimately rewarding, regardless of what you accomplished by actually working.
Meditation helps relieve stress, one of the main causes known to accelerate aging.
Provides Greater Pain Relief Than Morphine
A researcher at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center found that “a little over an hour of meditation training can dramatically reduce both the experience of pain and pain-related brain activation.”
And that meditation provided “about a 40-percent reduction in pain intensity and a 57-percent reduction in pain unpleasantness. Meditation produced a greater reduction in pain than even morphine or other pain-relieving drugs, which typically reduce pain ratings by about 25 percent.”
Strengthens the Brain
According to UCLA researches found those who mediate have healthier brains, proportionate to how many years they’ve been practicing.
Johns Hopkins University researchers found that meditation acts in a similar manner to antidepressants when it comes to depression.
May Equate To Sleep
One study suggests that meditating may decrease the need for sleep, finding that in long term mediators, “multiple hours spent in meditation are associated with a significant decrease in total sleep time when compared with age and sex matched controls who did not meditate. Whether meditation can actually replace a portion of sleep or pay-off sleep debt is under further investigation.”
Increases Performance and Slows Cognitive Degeneration
Not only does meditating increase focus by clearing out the clutter in your mind, it actually changes the brain’s physical structure by increasing plasticity.
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Research data indicates that “regular practice of meditation is associated with increased thickness in a subset of cortical regions related to somatosensory, auditory, visual and interoceptive processing. Further, regular meditation practice may slow age-related thinning of the frontal cortex.”