I have been Buddhist now for 6 years and meditation has become quite a large part of my daily life. I find it has helped a lot with sleeping problems, stress from both too much work and just day to day life and has had an overall benefit on my general wellbeing. So today I am going to share with you the pros and cons of meditation and a basic how-to guide as many people don't understand how it actually works.
Basically, meditation is a practice in which you train or induce your mind into a mode a consciousness to realise a benefit, (wikipedia sounds so much smarter than me so I just pinched this) >.< Meditation has been around since the prehistoric age, early civilisations used it to communicate, or be at one with their God. Although it is primarily seen as a religious idea, it is used today to help relieve stress, help with insomnia and even tackle some mental illnesses.
There are many benefits of meditation, but the most recognised would be relieving stress, as chronic stress has become a big issue from adolescents up. What many people do not know, is that when you are meditating your heart rate and breathing slow down, so technically you are getting fitter (just a little bit) :3. Your blood pressure regulates, you use oxygen more efficiently and you sweat less (yay! Less stinky sweat patches). You produce less cortisol (it's really bad for you, it's what you release when you are stressed), your mind ages slower and your immune system improves. No only do you clear you mind, but your creativity also improves (づ｡◕‿‿◕｡)づ. People who practice meditation regularly find it easier to give up life-threatening habits such as smoking, drinking and drugs.
Meditation is free and always available.
It is great for short-term stress relief and long-term health.
You can feel the benefits in just one session.
There are no potential side effects.
No special equipment is required.
It takes some practice and a lot of patience.
It may be difficult to understand how to do it at the beginning.
When I meditate I make sure I am in a quiet space, with no distractions and no way for anyone to bother me. I like to either sit on my knees or cross-legged (just be comfortable). I focus on just my breathing, but if this is difficult for you, you can focus on a slight 'oooommm' sound. I like to spend between 5 - 20 minutes meditating, sometimes even longer if I can. Once you have practiced regularly you will find it easier to do it for longer and eventually can block out any possible distractions from around you.
So I hope this post has inspired you to possibly give meditation a try. I love it and hope you do too.