Anxiety Help Through Meditation: How the ‘Here and Now’ Enhances Your Life

Is there a "magic pill" that can solve all your stress and anxiety? Unfortunately, the answer is no.

In an increasingly stressful world, people now experience the symptoms of stress and anxiety more than ever.

Many of the solutions you will find in a typical Google search will tell you to "reduce stress" or "avoid stress", but there is a problem with that logic.

Not all stress is avoidable or reducible. So, what do you have to do? Anxiety help is possible, and it is as simple as adding a daily meditation practice to your life.

Read on to discover how practicing meditation for anxiety is an intelligent solution.

  • Crush anxiety and stress with meditation

    You may not be able to avoid the stressful meeting of the board, the sales call or your children jumping out of bed, but you can strengthen your brain's ability to Manage and manage your anxiety and stress. If you can develop your muscle to manage stress, you will be better equipped to face your anxiety and your stress.

    Do you want to learn how to reduce the feeling of stress and anxiety in order to live your life again? Meditation can be the key.

    Meditation has become brain-strengthening training for people like Tony Robbins, Oprah Winfrey and Tim Ferris. In this article, I will show how meditation can help and how to begin, even if you have never meditated before.

    Train your brain: reconnecting fire

    Meditation is not just a spiritual practice. It's more like a brain exercise.

    If you want to develop strong muscles, you need to go to the gym and exercise. The muscles you choose to exercise will determine which muscles become stronger.

    The same goes for your brain.

    In neuroscience, there is a saying that says: "The brain connects as it shoots", which means that the more we participate in a specific way of thinking, activity or habit, the more the brain will actually build more wiring to facilitate that process next time.

    When the brain is constantly stressed and anxious, it begins to establish the wiring to make that process is easier, which is the opposite of what you want.

    So, instead of trying to completely eliminate the stress of your life, you need to train your brain to better resist and manage stress and anxiety.

    Pump the Brakes on Stress

    The brain has two modes of operation: Sympathetic (Fight-O-Flight) and Parasympathetic (Growth, Health and Relaxation). Imagine the sympathetic nervous system as the "accelerator pedal" of the brain and the parasympathetic nervous system as the "brake pedal".

    Chronic stress and anxiety press the "accelerator pedal" and connect your brain to master better (stuck in stress), which turns off the parasympathetic mode (relaxation mode), which makes it more difficult to calm down, relax and reduce Anxiety and stress

    Meditation pushes the brake pedal and helps the brain strengthen the parasympathetic side of your nervous system, which helps you restore balance and calmness.

    Mindfulness meditation, a meditation technique that emphasizes focusing on the present moment, trains the brain to cut signals that produce anxiety and stress by simply doing something as simple as concentrating on your breathing. [1]

    By focusing on the "here and now", it helps the brain become more aware of the source of its stress and anxiety, while simultaneously training the brain to become more resistant to stress and anxiety.

    Destroy stress hormones

    When your brain is stressed, it promotes the release of cortisol your body's stress hormone, to help the body manage its stress. It is a healthy and natural response to stress for a short period of time; but, it is not intended to be a long-term solution to the work, financial or relationship stress that may be causing it.

    High chronic cortisol levels of stress and anxiety can interfere with your energy, slow brain performance, promote weight gain and increase the risk of depression. [2]

    Mindfulness meditation has been shown to decrease the stress hormone, cortisol, which can help you feel more energized and healthy while crushing stress and anxiety. [3]

    Increase your chemicals "feel good"

    Meditation not only reduces the symptoms of your stress and anxiety, but also increases the chemicals in your brain that make you feel happier [4]

    Chronic stress and anxiety can decrease the "happy" neurotransmitter in your brain, serotonin as well as also the neurotransmitter "feel good" of his brain, dopamine .

    • Low serotonin levels can make you feel more sad, unhappy, lethargic, depressed and anxious .
    • Low levels of dopamine can make you feel demotivated, less resistant to stress, tired and forgetful .

    Studies show that meditation can increase the levels of serotonin and dopamine in the brain by helping your brain not only eliminate stress, but you feel happier, more motivated and more energized.

    Help achieve lasting and positive change

    Do you feel that you are always stressed and anxious as if it were the pre-established mode of operation for your brain?

    Would you do it? Would you like to change that? Meditation can be the solution for lasting changes and results.

    Science has shown that the brain continues to change and reorganize throughout its life, depending on its lifestyle and experiences. This is called neuroplasticity. One of the most influential promoters of neuroplasticity is a protein called Brain-Derived Neutrophic Factor (BDNF).

    BDNF helps the brain produce more brain cells, create new connections in the brain, and protect the brain against damage and stress. BDNF can help your brain adopt new healthy habits more easily, learn faster and even promote a healthy brain.

    Meditation can increase BDNF production and help your brain to reprogram itself to reduce stress, anxiety and happiness. [5]

    Make your brain bigger and stronger

    So, does meditation only help you manage your feelings and emotions?

    It turns out that meditation does more than meets the eye. Meditation not only makes you feel less stressed and anxious, but it can change the physical structure of your brain.

    One study in particular found that regular meditation increased the thickness of the brain. A thicker brain is a stronger brain. [6]

    An area of ​​the brain that scientists discovered to increase thickness was in the brain's insula. The insula is thought to be a center for controlling consciousness, awareness and the regulation of emotions.

    This means that meditation can help you increase the working capacity of the portion of the brain that regulates your consciousness and your emotions.

    Put Yourself On The Driver's Seat

    Many times, people who are chronically stressed may feel "out of control" of their stress and anxiety and constantly feel overwhelmed by the source of their stress.

    Anxiety and stress act as a fire alarm to the brain. When you are stressed, often your concentration is on the feeling or source of your anxiety, not on the solution.

    This can make you feel like a passenger in your own mind, constantly bouncing off your emotions.

    Meditation teaches you to calm the constant fire alarm of stress to gain perspective and clarity in solutions.

    Meditation trains your brain to regain control over your thoughts and emotions, allowing you to return to the driver's seat with your hands on the wheel and control the direction and course of your mind.

    Meditation techniques when your brain does not shut down

    1. 5 minutes a day can cause a big impact

    Small steps still lead to big goals.

    When you first started training, did you start with a full marathon?

    Of course not. You trained up.

    You can use the same strategy for meditation. You can start with just 5 minutes a day, adding one minute at a time to progress more.

    It is not necessary to be a Buddhist monk, to meditate for hours a day, to experience the benefits mentioned above.

    Even if you're busy, you can still find at least 5 minutes during the day to get away and find a quiet place to take some time and meditate.

    "If you do not have 10 minutes, you do not have a life."
    – Tony Robbins

    Try meditating at different times of the day. Some people prefer the morning, while others prefer the afternoon or afternoon. Find what works best for you.

    Start meditating only 5 minutes a day and start accumulating one minute at a time until you reach 20 minutes.

    2. The breathing of the box has great benefits

    A simple but powerful way to start is by concentrating on your breathing. This helps block all distractions and bring your brain to the present moment.

    " Box Breathing " is a great technique to start. This is how it works

    1. Inhale for 4 seconds.
    2. Hold the top of your inhalation for 4 seconds.
    3. Exhale for 4 seconds.
    4. Hold the bottom of your inhale exhale for 4 seconds.

    * Repeat as many times as necessary .

    It has been proven that deep, slow breathing activates the "brake pedal" of your brain, helping your brain to deactivate the stress response and activate relaxation and attention. [7]

    Counting the time of your inhalations and exhalations helps to maintain your focus and attention during your meditation.

    3. Try some tools of the trade

    Do not be ashamed to seek help, especially when it comes to meditation.

    In today's modern age, you have access to more technology and resources than ever before. Why not use them to help make meditation easier and more effective?

    Using useful tools like the ones listed below can help you avoid distractions and stay consistent with your meditation.

    Here are some useful tools that can help you with your meditation.

    • Guided mediations: Youtube videos, CDs and podcasts can be a great way to start and pick up new ideas for your meditation practice.
    • The Headspace Application: The Headspace app is an Apple / Android application that has many guided meditations to help you start and continue your meditation practice in just 10 minutes a day.
    • Music: Find good relaxing instrumental music that you can play through your headphones to block out any distractions like dogs barking, neighbor cutting grass, etc.
    • Classes: Many cities have local classes or meetings, where you can go for free or pay a small fee and get orientation for meditation. You can also meet other like-minded people with whom you can connect.
    • Timer: You should not have to continually check the watch to see if you ran out of time. Set a timer that does it for you.
    • Advanced technology: There is an incredible state-of-the-art technology available today, such as Muse. Muse is a hearing aid that measures your brain waves and gives you feedback during meditation to help keep you on track, while keeping track of how you progress.

    4. Maintain consistency

    At first, it is natural for your mind to wander while meditating. Do not be too hard on yourself if this happens. Just restore your focus and continue.

    If you want to lose weight in the gym, do you think you will get results if you only go once a month?

    Not likely.

    The key to creating changes in the brain is effort and consistency. Consistency is one of the most important factors to obtain the benefits of meditation while it becomes a lasting practice.

    Remember the saying mentioned above? " The brain connects as it shoots ."

    To create new wiring and feel more in control of your stress and anxiety, you need to consistently "shoot" the brain enough times to stimulate your brain to reconnect.

    Over time, meditation will be easier and the benefits will last longer.

    5. Take it a step further

    As you become more comfortable with meditation and it is easier to calm your mind and focus, you are left with an incredible opportunity.

    As you reach a state of calm concentration, brain waves change patterns and your brain becomes very attentive and receptive to what you focus on.

    This gives you a great opportunity to start programming in your brain the things you want to achieve with your meditation.

    For example, you can start to focus your thoughts and attention on:

    • What you are grateful
    • Positive affirmations
    • Views
    • Mantras or sayings that are meaningful to you
    • Prayers

    Where do you go from here?

    Meditation can have profound and lasting effects on your brain. There is a reason why some of the most successful and happy people have sworn by meditation as one of the most important influences in their lives.

    Meditation is not as complicated as it seems and there are many simple strategies, tools, and resources to begin with, even if it is new to meditate.

    If you're ready to get back in the driver's seat and control your stress and anxiety, there's good news for you. Anyone can do it and can start with just a few minutes a day to start experiencing results. So go ahead and get Zen!

    Credit of the featured picture: The Digital Artist / Pixabay via pixabay.com

    Reference

    [1] Springer: Reduction of Anxiety after Exercise and Meditation
    [2]
    [3] Ohio University: The effect of meditation on cortisol
    [4] Springer: Serotonin, noradrenaline, dopamine metabolites in the technique Transcendental Meditation
    [5] New York Academy of Sciences: Does Meditation Improve Brain Cognition and Plasticity?
    [6] NCBI: Meditation experience linked to an increase in cortical thickness
    [7] NCBI: The meditation experience is linked to the increase in cortical Thickness

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