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Top Skills You Develop Through Meditation
The focusing of the mind through meditation brings deep benefits to our health and wellbeing. Having a regular meditation practice will help you to remain calm; reduce stress, tension, anxiety, anger and depression; improve memory, focus, inner peace, and whole body health as well as boost your concentration and mental clarity.
All these benefits come when you regularly quiet your mind and go within, connecting to your inner self and tapping into the calm source of all that you are.
Aside from these long-lasting health benefits, meditation teaches you to develop life-changing skills through the actual practice of sitting down to quiet your mind and focus on your breath.
Here are the ten top skills that a regular meditation practice can help you to develop.
1. Being Present
Being present not only with ourselves but with others is so important. It is a huge skill to develop as learning to be present with other people can greatly enhance our relationships.
When we are able to listen fully, and give our whole attention, we communicate better and learn things more easily. Being present with ourselves gives us the insight we need to understand our moods and emotions, and even the way these are reflected in the physical signs our body gives us.
2. Learning to consciously relax
The deep breathing and present moment awareness that comes with meditation can help you to relax at will during other times of your life. It’s a useful skill, especially at night if you cannot get to sleep. You can release tension and stress held in your body with the skills you learn meditating.
3. Witness your thoughts without judgement.
When you learn to still the thinking mind, you have mastered the skill of allowing your thoughts to pass without following them, fighting them or clinging to them. It’s an empowering and essential part of meditation and once you have this skill you can see its benefits in your conscious life. The ability to witness your thoughts without judgement means you are no longer controlled by them or any negativity they bring up. This is an incredible benefit of meditation.
4. Focus and concentration
When you can focus on an object or on your breath without being distracted you strengthen your ability to concentrate and hold your attention for a period of time. This is a solid foundation for productivity, happiness and strong mental health in the rest of your life.
When you meditate you strengthen your deep, inner knowing or intuition. This can help you in life situations when you need to trust your wisdom to make the right choice for you. The simple practice of tuning into yourself regularly deepens this connection and makes it a natural way for you to clarify what you want and which direction to take based on no other authority than your own wisdom.
You develop the skill of mindfulness every time you concentrate on the present moment in meditation.
It’s the ability to be in the moment and pay attention to whatever is happening in a way in which you are fully aware. You can bring this skill to your life and enjoy all the little but miraculous moments that make up the bigger picture in a way that brings you deep contentment and fulfillment.
7. Being open minded
When you meditate you are practicing non-judgement, learning to simply observe and accept things as they are. This encourages a truly open mind in the rest of your life, helping you to remain an observer of situations rather than someone with limited preconceptions. It can also help you to remain curious, spontaneous and creative.
8. Listening to your body
Meditation teaches you to become sensitive to the messages your body sends you. Whether there is an area that requires healing, focus or attention, tuning into yourself can help you become very aware of what your body needs.
9. Listening to your inner child
Meditation can awaken you to some deep areas within your psyche that need your attention. Whether it's repetitive behavior that keeps surfacing, or deep and long held self-esteem issues, traumatic baggage or emotional wounds from the past. Meditation can help you to identify and heal these wounds in your waking life. The work done through meditation and deep connection spills out into your life experience as you become more aware of when you are triggered emotionally or perhaps repeating negative cycles.
10. Boosting creativity
Meditation can help you to hone your ability to create and visualize. You become more attune to images, thoughts and impulses that reach you in that quiet state and this can translate to increased creativity during your normal life. Meditation can give you the motivation and courage to think outside of the box, see things in new ways and create with confidence at home or at work.
It’s a good idea to try out different meditation techniques to see which best suits your lifestyle and preferences. Some people benefit greatly from silent meditation, others find easier focus with chanting a mantra or visualizing, and for some music is essential to get them to that calm, quiet place.
There are several kinds of brain entrainment programs out there which help beginners to stick to a meditation practice through music and sound. One of these programs, Zen12, is a great idea for anyone with a busy mind and a lack of time. The audio is designed to produce a sound that positively affects the frequency of your brain waves, inducing the state of consciousness required for deep meditation. For more information read Kensho Way’s review of this program.
The most important thing to remember is that repetition and dedication is really key when it comes to reaping the benefits of meditation. Stick with your practice. Don’t be put off by the idea of “stopping thoughts.” True meditation is about learning to observe your mind, whatever state it is in at any given moment. There is no right and wrong, there is only you, returning to yourself again and again with the willingness to learn.
About the Author
Charlie is a marketer by day but a blogger by night (most weekends too). His journey into the world of meditation and yoga started roughly five years ago after a visit to Northern India left him inspired. Since then, he has tried to continue his daily habit and share his story with others.