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Against tension and stress: why practice meditation

In the high pace of life, we are accustomed to leaving our comfort zone almost every day and to face nervous situations. It would seem that with the advent of quarantine, they should have decreased, but everything turned out differently. A 24-hour stay within four walls, continuous interaction with household members, the absence of a line between remote work and rest - all this can be attributed to obvious stress factors that are layered on top of each other. And along with them, unnecessary, often negative thoughts accumulate in our head.

Meditation is a great way to get rid of them and break the vicious circle of tension. But the advantages of Eastern practices do not end there. Together with fitness trainer, triathlete and marathon runner Vladimir Lepesa , we will tell you how they can be useful in everyday life.

Against tension and stress: why practice meditation

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What is meditation and why do we need it?

We often come across the opinion that meditation is a very specific activity that is needed only by yogis and those who are seriously interested in spiritual practices. In fact, meditation has long been transformed from a highly moral direction of Eastern culture into a convenient and practical activity available to everyone. It is necessary for absolutely all people, especially those in self-isolation.

Vladimir: Meditation is observing yourself and your thoughts. This is a conscious experience of them, the ability to separate oneself from the emotional component and not identify with one's thoughts. Therefore, in conditions of any chronic stress, and all people living in a metropolis are in them, this practice is very important. It helps us for a while, in simple terms, to give our brain a rest. Stop the thought background it generates. Or you can disassociate yourself from this background and just watch it. It helps to relax, focus, improve concentration and attention, relax the nervous system, allow you to calm down and focus.

Against tension and stress: why practice meditation

Photo: istockphoto.com

Benefits of practices for the body and mental state

During the practice, the body is fully relaxed, but at the same time many processes are launched in it that affect the physical and mental human condition, and also affect the figure. Let's figure out what meditation does to our body at a deep level.

Influence brain activity and improve mental state

Meditation has a positive effect on the brain. Numerous studies have shown that the amygdala, which is responsible for emotional responses, shrinks significantly with practice. This leads to the fact that a person becomes more balanced and less sensitive to stimuli from externalenvironment.

Against tension and stress: why practice meditation

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In addition, meditation helps to more easily let go of fears, pain and resentment, stimulates brain activity, increases concentration and attention. And after practice, both hemispheres of the brain begin to work in a balanced way - this brings order to your life.

Develop imagination and the ability to visualize

This is due, again, with balanced work of different areas of the brain. It is generally accepted that people with an analytical and logical mindset are dominated by the left hemisphere, and among creative people, the right one. But spiritual practices can also be classified as right-brain ones: they develop imagination and the ability to visualize. Therefore, it is quite possible that a person previously far from art will awaken his creative potential.

Against tension and stress: why practice meditation

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Heal the body from the inside

Some studies have shown that people who devote at least 15 minutes a day to meditation , increased tone of the vagus nerve connecting the heart and brain. At the same time, the level of cortisol, the stress hormone, decreased in the body. These two phenomena combine to reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack. In addition, Eastern practices lower blood sugar levels, which is beneficial for diabetics, strengthen immunity and slow down the aging process in the body.

Against tension and stress: why practice meditation

Photo: istockphoto.com

Help to feel better about others

Meditation is not aimless contemplation of an abstract point in space. During the practice, attention should be directed inside yourself. And those people who devote enough time to studying their own nature begin to better understand and feel those around them.

Eliminate the acute sensation of pain

Since practices influence brain processes and mental state, they teach how to independently generate positive emotions, as well as get rid of or weaken negative ones. Surprisingly, when people with chronic pain were introduced to the skills of meditation, they learned to cope with discomfort more calmly or even noticed a decrease in their severity.

Against tension and stress: why practice meditation

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Help you lose weight

Weight loss is continuously associated with metabolism. Stress is a huge obstacle to the proper functioning of the body, and a constant nervous state can lead to a setweight. Therefore, to speed up metabolism, it is important to learn how to relax, which meditation will help to cope with. Practices also have a positive effect on the quality of sleep, which is extremely important on the path to a perfect body.

Against tension and stress: why practice meditation

Photo: istockphoto.com

When is the best time to meditate?

Meditation practices are different, but for people with an active lifestyle, they are most often a way to relax, recover and get rid of unnecessary thoughts. Therefore, our expert recommends meditating when both the brain and the body will be most ready for this - either immediately after waking up or before bed.

Vladimir: It is best to practice after awakening when the brain is still relaxed and is in the borderline state between sleep and wakefulness. This practice is best to replace our usual habit of going to gadgets, social networks, reading letters in the morning. This is what you need to do right before you start communicating with the outside world. That is, to do meditation so that our brain comes to a peaceful state and becomes protected from all thoughts that will pass through it. So that we can understand that not all the thoughts that are in our head should be taken seriously and identified with them. Or the practice can be done before bedtime to relax the nervous system so that you can fall asleep better, disconnect from all work processes and give your body and brain a good rest.

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