Meditation Can Improve Your Life
As a little girl, I went with my older, college-aged sister to her college ministry group. She belonged to a group called the Ecumenical Center (nicknamed simply The Center) where young adults from any denomination could come together and study, worship, praise, and participate in fun, Christian activities. They never minded when I tagged along.
One visit, the campus minister led the group through a series of relaxation and meditation techniques. Even at 11, I found a huge benefit in that. I wouldn’t have been able to put it in words, but I knew I felt ‘better’ then, that my mind was quieter, and that I felt more peaceful.
As I grew up, went through school, started a job, a family, I lost sight of that experience so long ago in my childhood. I got so wrapped up in the busyness of the day to day, that I forgot to take time to be still.
I attended church and prayed, but I never allowed those moments to truly soak in. Does that make sense? Have you felt that way before? Then, after the death of my best friend, I had an amazing moment when I ‘heard’ God tell me to listen when I prayed frantically to Him.
It was then that I knew I must not only pray, but I must take time to listen. I remembered then my experience as a child and how, even though I couldn’t put it in words before, I felt a connection with God during those quiet moments.
Through online research, I found many meditation and guided meditation ideas. Many of them I found beneficial. Some, not so much. It was easy to start weeding out the ones that weren’t helpful and didn’t make me feel connected. I even wrote several Christ centered guided meditations. Calling on Him, being still and listening, makes such a huge difference in our lives.
Here are 7 ways meditation can improve your life:
1. Reduces stress – just taking the time to stop and breathe can help you get centered and let the stress you’ve been building up dissipate.
2. Improves concentration – whether you choose guided meditation or free thinking, meditation helps you focus. In turn, that will help you throughout other areas and times in your daily living.
3. Encourages healthy lifestyle – when you meditate and work on maintaining a healthy mind and spirit, you’ll automatically begin to crave physical health too both in the desire to eat healthier whole foods and with an increase in physical exercise.
4. Increases self-awareness – as you begin to connect with the Whole that is God, you’ll become more aware of who you are in Him. It’ll give you a new perspective on purpose and on your life.
5. Slows aging – it’s been known and shown that those who meditate regularly slow aging. It’s a combination of the reduced stress, the healthier lifestyle, and the awareness of spirit.
6. Increases acceptance – as you accept yourself and find yourself more in tune with God, you’ll also see others and who they are in Him (even when they don’t always know it themselves).
7. Strengthens connection with God – as you quiet your mind and spirit and allow God in, you’ll be able to hear more clearly and bond more closely with Him.
While the thought of meditation might be new to you, give it a try. You’ll find the benefits totally worth it. If you’re unsure where to start, you might want to check out my guided meditations. However, it’s fine to not use any music or guidance. Find a quiet spot, say a quick prayer, and still your mind. It might take a little time and a little practice, but you’ll get the hang of it.