Everyone from high-flying celebrities to wildly successful entrepreneurs have, of late, extolled the virtues of meditation.
From increasing the amount of grey matter in the brain (that area that gives us our “information processing power”) to noticeably reducing blood pressure, there are benefits to meditation beyond a little extra pep in your step.
One particular study, for example, found an additional benefit for those who experience higher levels of anxiety than others. The study of 82 anxiety-suffering participants from the University of Waterloo, found just 10 minutes of daily meditation can help to change the focus of overriding worries by restricting mind-wandering.
“Mind wandering accounts for nearly half of any person’s daily stream of consciousness,” said researcher Mengran Xu, the study’s researcher. “For people with anxiety, repetitive off-task thoughts can negatively affect their ability to learn, to complete tasks, or even function safely.”
The focus of meditation provided the additional benefit of helping participants focus on other things, as opposed to their own anxious thoughts.
“[We] found that meditation practice appears to help anxious people to shift their attention from their own internal worries to the present-moment external world, which enables better focus on a task at hand.”
This second study from Yale University mirrors the findings, by showing that meditation leads to a decrease in activity in the default mode network of the brain, which is responsible for mind-wandering.
Need any more reasons to give it a go?