Why do we meditate? The primary reason for meditation is to achieve stillness in the mind. To let go of your anxieties, fears, worries, dreams and the thoughts that take over your life every single day. It’s a great way to find calm so that you can focus on your soul. When you meditate regularly, you’ll find that you’re able to handle stressful situations better. You learn how to stay calm and collected even when things don’t go your way, you are prepared to handle your emotions and keep your temper in check and this helps in enhancing your interactions because there is minimum conflict.
Meditation has health benefits too. Because it helps you stay calm and relaxed, it can be a great tool for lowering blood pressure, reducing anxiety and stress without the side effects that come with medicines, such as managing the symptoms of hypertension to mention but a few.
However, meditation cannot work in isolation, for it to have the desired impact, you must incorporate other activities as well. If you’re physically unfit, eat unhealthy foods and don’t exercise, you cannot expect to meditate every day and realise a long and healthy life. It’s not magic. Part of living a healthy life involves choosing to eat the right foods. Although a good number of meditation gurus are vegetarian, you need not be one. You should, however, pay attention to what you eat so that your body can be in good shape. It’s also advisable that you don’t meditate when your stomach is full or right after a meal. For you to be able to focus during meditation your body needs to be in a relaxed state and a full stomach is not it. That’s why it’s best to meditate early in the morning before you start your day because meditation will put your frame of mind in the right place helping you to start your day on a high note.
Exercise is also key. You don’t have to be a pro but you need to engage in some kind of workout routine at least a couple of days a week. Running or jogging is a great workout because it exercises the entire body, the mind, and heart. You pump oxygen in all your muscles as you run, you strengthen your heart and lung muscles and this will help you breath better during meditation, and it’s a great way to clear your mind. As you exercise, your body also eliminates toxins that can affect not just your physical but emotional, psychological, and spiritual wellbeing.
If you wish to make a deeper commitment to meditation, you might also consider getting rid of habits that could impair your ability to enjoy the experience optimally. This can include eliminating the use of alcohol, smoking, drugs or other substances that could take away from the meditation experience. Or by improving the environment of your house by using an air purifier.
Ultimately everything is connected; our body, mind and spirit and you can’t take care of one while neglecting the other and expect to enjoy a healthy life.