Meditation is also called “meta-attention.” In meditation, you bring attention to where your attention goes.
Meditation practices help to slow down your mental processes. When this happens, your muscles begin to relax, your heart rate slows down and your blood pressure lowers. Your body begins to function at a slower and calmer level, away from the fight-or-flight response. (Read my previous article to learn about the fight-or-flight response.)
The aim of meditation is not to stop the mind from thinking. It will never do that because it’s not designed that way. The aim of meditation is to help you consciously choose your thoughts (instead of allowing them to become a runaway train) and be able to focus where you need to.
A great analogy for this is assuming your mind is like a snow globe and your thoughts are the snow. When you shake the snow globe, the snow is all over the place. Majority of the time during the day, your thoughts are running around in your mind, just like the snow all over the snow globe.
When you meditate, your mind starts to calm and the snow settles at the bottom of the snow globe. Notice how much space there is now in the snow globe. Meditation thus frees up all that space in your mind to make way for more productive tasks.
In addition, a 2012 UCLA School of Medicine study found that meditation practitioners have a more balanced brain. What does this mean? It means that the “corpus callosum,” the grand central station-like cable of nerves cross-linking the brain hemispheres, is remarkably stronger, thicker, and more well connected.
Having a balanced brain means you’re not only left-brained (more logical, practical, and analytical, often better at math and science) or only right-brained (more imaginative, intuitive, and sensual, often excelling at philosophy and the arts). You have full access to all that your brain can offer you!
How awesome is that!
I just realised, too, that I’m a prime example of developing a balanced brain. You see, my career background is in Information Technology. So yes, I was highly left-brain for 3/4 of my adult life. But with my daily meditation practice this last 10 years and engaging in a lot of complementary therapies to heal my past, plus the various training I have undergone, I have developed my intuitive capabilities without having to go on “psychic training.”
Anything is possible if you put your mind to it! Pun intended. 😉
Check out my 6-Week One-on-One Personal Meditation Program if this is something that calls to you.
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