I am not a spiritual guide, but today I woke up eager to share a millennial secret. Its benefits have been proven throughout history.
I am talking about meditation.
In this article, you´ll learn the benefits of practicing meditation. I’ll go a little further and tell you how companies used meditation as an important tool to achieve the wellbeing of their employees: increasing their creativity, focus and, of course, productivity.
—How will I do it?
Thought my personal approach to meditation and the different ways of practicing.
There are some simple techniques that you can use to get started and I will reference them here. Also, I will show you how energy is the center of the process. I will warn you of the need to focus on a clear and well-defined intention. Finally, I will describe the ideal conditions to meditate.
What is meditation?
People associate meditation as a practice that only great masters are able to do. Over time, though, it has become a more popular activity, accessible to any individual. Today, it may have lost some of its historical mysticism, transforming it into a conception related to wellbeing, surrounding the person and the environment.
After experimenting with many techniques, I have managed to simplify its definition. Meditating is nothing more than “silencing our thoughts”. I refer to that explosion of thoughts with which we whip ourselves. Because, although it sounds curious, are the thoughts that worry us that tend to remain and stay longer, repeating them in our heads once and once again. We tend to think of the past or let ourselves be carried away by the worry of the future.
Meditate increases the level of consciousness
Neuroscience has proven that meditation raises the level of consciousness. Studies by Joe Dispenza – a well-known researcher in neuroscience and epigenetics – have focused on measurements of levels of increases on alpha and gamma wave emissions when meditating. Other studies have demonstrated their effects on the person and their relationship with the environment.
From these investigations, it has been established that whoever meditates, that person experiences an increase feelings of love, understanding, and compassion for their environment. This is a higher level of consciousness than usual.
Thinking about the other, not just me, is one of the most beneficial effects that meditation offers society. In my particular case, meditation extended my compassionate radar to unknown people, to the trees and to the animals.
To meditate is to be present. It implies activating full consciousness in today, in the now. They say that the difference between where you were yesterday and where you will be tomorrow is what you do today. It may sound very strawberry, but I have learned that understanding it is key.
Types of meditation
There are many schools or wellness centers that promote meditation and different types or forms to meditate. All lead to the same: reach states of silence. But each technique does it using different strategies. Distracting stimuli may consist of a focus on breathing, body energy, images or sounds.
Static meditation or meditation with movement
From the point of view of the use of space, meditations can be static or use movements. Static meditations can be performed in a sitting position, a standing position, in a seiza position or simply lying down. Examples of moving meditations are martial arts disciplines such as Tai Chi; disciplines that use walks or dance performances such as Biodance: a meditative discipline in a movement that has gained significant popularity in recent years.
Meditation using visualization
Visualization is one of the most popular techniques to reach that state of silence or quietness. Whether imagining the desired ideal situation, observing geometric shapes, colors or images with or without meanings, allows focusing attention away from thoughts.
The different schools that promote meditation
Here we will mention the most popular: the dogzhen, vipássana, sazhen, yoga, kabbala, transcendental meditation, among many others. The Catholic Church also has meditation centers based on prayer.
When and where to meditate?
I was organizing a national event on meditation, when I decided to ask each of the guest directors and teachers where do they meditate and at what time. The answers were different according to the disciplines.
Morning hours seems to be the favored hour. Some disciplines such as Transcendental Meditation do it twice a day instead. To my surprise, a couple of teachers responded: “I no longer simulate the state of mindfulness, I live permanently in it”. From that experience, this phrase was the one that was repeated within me. Today, that state is my challenge.
A seated position is the most used position in meditation. Either in a chair or on cushions. The position of the feet can be on the ground, in seiza, in lotus, or simply crossed. Being lying down can be useful for some types of meditation, but it is contraindicated in others because of the risk of being embrace by Morpheus.
As for the ideal site to meditate, seems people preferred the house. Some organizations and business companies have added a meditation program; so, work also begins to be a good place to practice this technique of wellbeing. If you prefer to meditate with people, particularly if you are a beginner, my recommendation is that you go to the centers or schools that are closest to your home.
But, if you have time and possibilities to meditate outdoors, there is the most satisfying experience of all: mountains, parks, beaches, wherever you like. Some teachers explain that absolute silence or darkness when meditating is not a requirement. In a noisy place or crowded spaces, the place becomes of no importance if you manage to control your mind and silence your thoughts. It’s a matter of technique and will.
Meditation leads to three types of benefits. In principle, the integrating benefit is to achieve a state of coherence or alignment between your body, your mind, and your emotions. For each of them, I will share the Top 4 of the benefits that have been scientifically proven:
Body benefits when we meditate
1. Decrease blood pressure.
2. Diminishes illnesses related to tension.
3. Increase serotonin production that improves mood and behavior.
4. It improves the immune system.
Mental benefits of meditation
1. Clarifies the mind and makes it more creative
2. Improves attention and promotes creative thinking
3. Develop intuition
4. Increase productivity
Emotional benefits of meditation
1. It promotes the states of peace.
2. It opens new perspectives on situations and problems.
3. Increase the feeling of well-being and happiness.
4. It offers greater openness and serenity for the relationship with other people.
Why silence thoughts?
When I started as a meditator, I wondered why I should silence my thoughts. Somehow I had come to believe that I was what I thought. I even had blind faith in my thoughts. I could almost have assured that more than mine, it was the very destiny that spoke to me.
This fascinating world of studies turned my beliefs around. Today I know that I am not what I think. I am convinced that what I think with insistence, I can precipitate. Whether desirable or not. Anyone who has read about the Law of Attraction knows exactly what I’m talking about.
But what are thoughts?
In conversations held with a well-known teacher on conscious meditation, told me: thoughts are internal conversations that we have with ourselves. Many of those conversations are loaded with third-party judgments towards us. They are, in short, interpretations that we have on reality in a conscious or unconscious manner. They are not real, she emphasized.
Meditation, how companies use meditation for the wellness of their coworkers.
Some companies have begun to incorporate meditation into their wellness programs. Managers are beginning to understand that a healthy state of mind on their coworkers reflects in a healthy environment.
In addition, the real benefits for an enterprise that practice meditation is: having collaborators with a better focus, mental stability, and serenity to assess business opportunities when presented, the capability to communicate better, the capability to integrate better with their environment is a very good argument to donate man-hours. Collaborators with high levels of consciousness build conscious organizations.
Group meditations seek to create coherence groups. Reach a new state of consciousness, raise the level of the whole collection and expand beyond their own borders and the company.
I know important business groups that pose corporate meditation as a space to generate those states of consciousness. They seek individual, group, organizational and social benefit. With very good reasons they have been called Conscious Organizations.
As you can see, here is an appetizer to an exciting world. It is not a religion, it is just a technique. But the effects of meditation can surprise you.
Cheer up, look for the technique that best applies to your case and starts doing spiritual muscle exercising daily.