Did you know that one 20-minute meditation is the equivalent of four hours of sleep? Forget naps!! Just meditate. Did you know that daily meditation for two months shows great improvement in dura matter quality per brain scans? How about the fact that meditation leads to neuroplasticity, the brain's ability to change (structurally and functionally), allowing it to physically heal and you to control thoughts, emotions, and reactiveness? And that meditation actually causes the brain to grow, creating thicker cortical walls which slows the aging process, improves memory, attention, and aids decision making skills?
Meditation offers countless benefits for psychological, physiological, and spiritual enhancement (think Mind-Body-Spirit). There are countless ways to practice meditation and there are several categories of meditation. I am a beginner to meditation myself - I've been practicing less than a year, but it has been life-changing -- it yields daily benefits in all areas of my life. Since I am a beginner, instead of trying to educate you on the different forms of meditation and convince you of any one particular method, I'll just list the benefits and why meditation is important. There is a plethora of information on the internet, so have fun learning and experimenting. At the end of this article, I will provide a link to my favorite meditation - the one that has brought drastic change to my life. It's golden!
So how does meditation impact marriage and long-term relationships? Well, we all know the first step to improving any of our relationships lies in our own personal development. Daily meditation will make you a better person and a more pleasant person to be around. But when BOTH partners meditate, whether together or separately, the relationship goes to a whole new level. I recommend meditating together, and then sharing your experiences. My favorite meditation is called Priming, and I discuss this more at the end of this article, but it involves gratitudes and goal setting. Both are excellent to share with your partner. You can encourage each other and hold each other accountable. This fosters teamwork and connection. That leads to better communication and more passion.
WHAT IS MEDITATION?
It's a practice that involves focus. You can focus inward on your health/body, on your breath, spirituality, goals, or on nothingness. There is no right or wrong way to meditate, but choosing the subtype of meditation based on desired goals combined with proper technique used consistently, will certainly provide maximum benefit. All meditation will provide benefits, but different meditative processes provide different benefits - so, do your research to determine the best form of meditation so you can accomplish your goals.
In short, meditation provides a plethora of health benefits for mind, body, and spirit. I've broken down the benefits into three categories below.
Increases Serotonin levels
Helps overcome stress
Resolves phobias and fears
Helps control own thoughts
Increased feelings of vitality and rejuvenation
Increased emotional stability
Able to see the larger picture in a given situation
Develop will power
Develops emotional maturity
Grows a stable, more balanced personality
Increases tolerance and compassion
Gives composure to act in a considerate & constructive way
Decreased tendency to worry
Helps make more accurate judgments
Decrease in restless thinking
Increases the size of the brain
Increases brain wave coherence
Improves cognitive processes - maximizes focus, concentration, creativity, memory
Decreases heart attack risk, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels > lowers risk of cardiovascular disease
Increases blood flow and slows the heart
Improved flow of air to lungs, resulting in easier breathing and better oxygenation
Decreases respiratory rate
Improves sex life and boosts libido
Increases exercise tolerance
Leads to a deeper level of physical relaxation
Reduces anxiety attacks by lowering the levels of blood lactate
Enhances the immune system
Helps diminish chronic disease
Helps aids post-operative healing
Decreases muscle tension
Decreases pain perception by 40% (morphine only decreases by 25%)
Reduces viral activity
Cultivates healthy habits that lead to weight loss
Cure headaches and migraines
More inclined to sports, activities
Relaxes the nervous system
Harmonize your endocrine system
Reduces pre-menstrual symptoms
Heals infertility (the stress of infertility can interfere with the release of hormones that regulate ovulation)
Reduces overall need for medical care
Enhances spirituality as a whole
Helps keep things in perspective
Provides peace of mind
Increases self-actualization and understanding of others
Fosters the ability to forgive
Improves outlook on life
Helps one live in the present
Creates a widening, deepening capacity for love
Increases acceptance of oneself
Discovery of the power and consciousness beyond the ego
Deeper level of spiritual relaxation
Creates a deeper and stronger relationship with God
Reduces patterns of judgment
Opens one to limit-less belief
Shifts one to being happier with simplicity, nature, and self
My favorite meditation is called Priming. It's a 12 minute guided meditation led by Tony Robbins and can be found HERE. I do this every morning. If you're married or in a long term relationship, I suggest sharing your gratitudes and goals with each other daily. If you can make time to meditate together, even better.... it will foster connection, compassion, love, teamwork, better communication, and passion!
And I love the Tibetan Bowls Meditation App (found in iTunes) for bath time - it'll take your bath to a whole new level.
What are YOUR favorite meditations?
Don't hate, meditate :)