Meditation for Stress and Boosting Brainpower

Making meditation a part of your wellness practice is an excellent resource for melting away stress and boosting your brainpower. 

Meditation changes your brain, helps your mind function better, has stress-relieving effects, and changes your life. When you sit in mindfulness, you can rewire your brain by replacing unhealthy patterns and thoughts with helpful, supportive ones that evoke health, happiness, and stability. A focused mind is a happy mind.

Neuroscientist Sara Lazar, Ph.D., was one of the first scientists to measure and make claims about the benefits of meditation through analyzing brain scans. She looked at the brains of long-term meditators and found that meditation actually changes the grey matter in the brain. Here is a TEDx Talk by Dr. Sara Lazar on how meditation changes your brain.

 

Brain Training

Practicing mindful meditation creates habits of presence, awareness, better focus and improves your emotional intelligence. You can think of this brain training as strengthening your happiness muscle. Science has proven that meditation nourishes your sense of well-being while reducing stress and worry.

The more you meditate, you shrink the parts of the brain connected to stress and negative thinking. Interdependently this practice also strengthens your compassion, empathy and increases feelings of kindness.

Training the brain with meditation improves your ability to focus so you can be more effective and create more thoughts and energy to get closer to your goals. When you notice yourself getting distracted and going out of focus, return your awareness to the breath; this continual practice of returning to peace trains your brain to better handle stress and improves your mental health.

Here is a wonderful guided meditation to implement into your daily wellness routine to boost your brainpower, increase focus, and melt away stress! Take a 5 or 10-minute break and sit comfortably in a quiet space where you can focus.

 

Guided meditation to boost your brainpower and melt away stress!

    1. Close your eyes and take a big breath in and release with a sigh to get yourself centered. Focus on your breathing.
    2. Bring forward your intention. Be specific, and keep it simplified. 
    3. Relax and focus on your breathing for 15 cycles. Each inhale and exhale is one cycle. Count each one as you go through the cycles.
    4. When you notice yourself getting distracted, simply start again.
    5. Visualize yourself as an open channel, both ends are open, and your thoughts flow freely through you. You are at peace with whatever comes and goes.
    6. Everything that enters goes out through your channel. Don’t cling to any thought. Keep your focus on your breathing to keep your channel clear.
    7. When you get through 15 cycles, stand up and extend your limbs outward, stretching and expanding.
    8. Bring your limbs back in, giving yourself a big hug bringing your intention to your heart.
    9. Now go forward through your day slowly with focus, awareness, and a calm mindset.

This meditation practice will improve your brainpower, enhance your focus, reduce stress, and improve your well-being. Share this meditation or other helpful stress relief techniques with loved ones to support Stress Awareness Month.