- Meditation is one of the most effective ways to improve mental health and regain focus.
- A study has found that practicing mindfulness meditation for 30 minutes a day over eight weeks helps reduce anxiety and depression.
In India, most people often neglect psychological problems due to lack of awareness and the prevalence of high social stigma. According to a 2008 study, meditation is one of the most effective ways individuals cope with their mental issues.
While delivering a TEDtalk, mindfulness expert and founder of Headspace (a healthcare establishment specialized in meditation), Andy Puddicombe explained that refreshing the mind for even 10 minutes a day can bring several positive changes in life. In a recent study, psychologists of Harvard Medical School have found that mindfulness meditation practice for 30 minutes a day over eight weeks increases the volume of gray matter in their hippocampus and helps reduce depression symptoms.
The COVID-19 outbreak, followed by lockdown and social distancing, has come up with a broad range of mental health problems, reveals the mental health foundation. “Like so many people, I had been waking up with anxiety in the first week of this lockdown…I would get up and immediately check the death toll from this lethal virus and feel extremely sad. I’d worry about the migrant labor, daily wagers and the homeless people, having sleepless nights after looking at their images or watching the news. I felt I could tap into the energy of the universe and it was so heavy. So I made it a habit to get up and meditate every day,” said Bollywood actress Richa Chadha.
Experts of Headspace suggested that meditation may have no impact on external circumstances, but individuals can regain focus, calmness, and inner peace by practicing it regularly.
Meditation also helps in managing negative emotions and controlling aggression, says a study published in the journal Consciousness and Cognition. A study by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) claimed that people, who had never practiced meditation, suffered from high heart rate and blood pressure. Headspace experts suggested that walking meditation (spending time with nature) helps the brain get away from distractions and improves mental well-being.