O(M)MG: Is Meditation A Marketing Ploy Or The Real Deal?
Health & Wellness May 23, 2018
What can make us less anxious and stressed while improving our focus, ability to feel positive emotions and sense of self? Meditation continues to increase in social media popularity but are the benefits promoted just modern-day marketing myths to promote an ever-increase business or is this ancient practice genuinely good for us? So we ask: Is meditation a marketing ploy or the real deal?
Though prehistoric in origin, meditation is credited to Ancient India for having the first written records of the practice. Over the years, meditation has evolved with several countries, cultures and traditions making adaptions on how (and when) it’s practiced. Despite various technique, what’s generally remains the same in all types of meditation is the purpose; to help foster a deeper connection with one’s self by cancelling out the constant chatter of our subconscious. Most meditation techniques aim to do so by encouraging attention to the present moment and enabling the cultivation of a tranquil state.
But why should we cancel out the chatter of our subconscious? Isn’t it good to acknowledge all our thoughts? Is meditation just another social media trending topic? Curious on if this ancient practice has genuine modern day benefits, we delved deeper and found that the positive impacts of meditation are no myth!
Here are our some reasons it’s good to set aside some time and get in a meditation state of mind:
It helps calms the chaos: We have approximately 49 thoughts per minute. That turns into about 50 – 70 000 thoughts per day; that’s a whole lot of thinking! The caveat is not all the thoughts are new, fresh or helpful to our well-being (e.g. when we’re unhappy with our appearance, we may think “I look ugly” several times). With so many thoughts, it’s no wonder we can become anxious and stressed. Through the use of technology in research studies (e.g. fMRI’s), data has concluded that meditation can loosen the connection in certain neural pathways which impact levels of anxiety and stress.
It increases our brain power: Meditation increases gray matter in the hippocampus and frontal areas of our brain and though gray isn’t our favorite color, in our brains it’s a beautiful thing! Gray matter can help increase our abilities to focus and feel more long-lasting positive emotions.
It cultivates connection: Research is showing that people who meditate have higher levels of compassion making it easier to connect with ourselves and others. An attributing reason is that meditators become more self-aware and less reactive; in moments of rage, they are more likely to review the situation with empathy instead of acting on angry impulse.
It’s free of charge: Right now, there’s big bucks made in the business of meditation but traditionally, it wasn’t viewed as a commercial practice. In recent years, meditation streams have developed courses, certification programs, books and marketable items including cushions, bells and clothes. Though the branded gear about clarity is cool, what’s cooler is that we truly don’t need anything to meditate except ourselves. We recommend finding a safe, comfortable and quiet spot to get started!
Main Image Photo Credit: https://www/gaiam.com
Rachna (@mindfullyyours)is a graduate of the Applied Mindfulness Meditation program from the University of Toronto, a certified Educator with two bachelor degrees and a diploma in Art Therapy. She's dedicated to living with a compassionate approach. Committed to helping people integrate Mindfulness...
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