Today many spiritual techniques are used by people around the world. Meditation is no longer just something from the realm of spiritual growth. The benefits of meditation have been proven by science in numerous studies.
Studies on 3,500 people have shown how meditation affects stress reduction. When we are under a lot of stress, the brain responds with a “hit or run” response. This is caused by a spike in the hormones cortisol and adrenaline. At the same time, meditation allows you to detach yourself from your thoughts and emotions and affect a decrease in stress hormone production.
There is an area of our brain responsible for fear called the amygdala. It helped our ancestors to stay alive by looking for danger around, always on the alert. But in our quieter times (relative to how primitive people lived), the amygdala is often triggered disproportionately to the level of real danger. Meditation helps to calm the “amygdala” and regular practice is thought to reprogram it, accustoming it to being less triggered in the future.
Scientists have found that after 2 weeks of practice, subjects’ attention span increased by +16%. As we age, the brain neurons responsible for memory and learning decline. Regular meditation increases neuronal concentration. Also, studies have shown that meditation reduces the activity of the brain centers responsible for pain.
That’s why the role of meditation in biohacking is so important. Meanwhile, meditation comes in many forms. Many people think of meditation as sitting in the lotus position for hours and not thinking about anything. But this is a one-sided view. There are a lot of techniques for how to meditate today.
My favorite form of meditation is very simple, comfortable, and yet very effective. It doesn’t matter what my posture is. Most of the time I do it before I go to sleep. I lie in bed, close my eyes, and imagine an empty room with two windows. Thoughts fly in from one window on the left and out the other window on the right. I’m just observing. I don’t get involved, I don’t think about it. I just watch without evaluating. Thoughts can have different forms: words, images, pictures, people, animals, and so on. And in the process of meditation I fall asleep.
I would note that with meditation I fall asleep faster and get a better night’s sleep. As for time, you don’t have to meditate for a specific time. Even if it is 10 minutes a day, it is already good. It’s better to meditate for a while than nothing at all. If meditation is difficult for you, you can find ready-made audios on the Internet and meditate to someone else’s voice. With time you will learn to do it all by yourself without the help of another person and will be able to do it anywhere, even standing in a line somewhere.
By the way, at this point many people make a mistake. They say they have a lot of thoughts and can’t get rid of them. In fact, the more you strive for a state of mindlessness, the bigger and stronger these thoughts will be. Scientists believe that up to 50,000 thoughts visit a person in a day. Most of which are out of a person’s control.
Your task is not to try not to think about anything, because it is impossible. Your job is to observe. Thoughts will come. And there will be a lot of them. This is normal. Just don’t get involved in them, just watch them as if from aside. Meditation is a way of life. You have to make it a habit and do it all the time. Even five minutes a day is not bad.