It’s a very exciting time in neuroscience. We have taken leaps and bounds in our understanding of the human brain through FMRI (Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging). We can now watch our brains change in real time as they are stimulated, or are resting.
One topic sparking the interest of many neuroscientists lately is the ancient practice of mindful meditation. Mindful meditation is being tranquil, yet aware. It is different from a trance, where you lose awareness.
So why are neuroscientists so fascinated by meditation? In a short answer: your gray matter literally grows and reshapes when you regularly meditate. This is in addition to hundreds of other positive effects on both your body and brain.
- Increased happiness through a higher left-to-right ratio of brain activity. A higher ratio also means you recover quicker from stress and trauma.
- Faster cognitive function, clearer judgement, and better decision making.
- Stronger negotiation skills through increased empathy and reasoning.
- Better moods that are stable. This means less anxiety.
- Stronger immune system.
- Slow and lessen effects of neurodegenerative diseases.
- Enhanced creativity and ability to “think outside the box.”
- Lowers high blood-pressure.
- Diminishes depression and feelings of loneliness and isolation.
- Increased ability to curb additions and cravings.
- Increased pain threshold.
- The list goes on, do your own research.
They say there is no one magic pill for health, but mediation has the capacity to extend your ability to be more in control of and responsible for yourself. Meditation is like taking the reins of your own health and well-being. And your journey begins with you!