The various meditative disciplines encourage a focus on heightened awareness, slower breathing, and increased acceptance.
Meditation is not a results-focused undertaking. Indeed, fixating too much on the results can provoke anxiety that undermines the benefits of meditation.
However, most research shows that meditation can work very quickly. Studies of meditation typically follow practitioners for weeks or months, not years. Many meditation practitioners report an immediate improvement following a meditation session.
During meditation, it is common to feel less stressed, more accepting, and at greater peace. Over time and with practice, these sensations may continue outside of meditation sessions.
How often to meditate
There is no right answer to this question. One argument is that any meditation is better than no meditation. So, if a person is only able to meditate once a week, this should not be a barrier to trying out the therapy.
A person can consider starting with a few sessions per week, working up to one session per day.
Meditating around the same time each day can make meditation a habit that is easy to incorporate into daily life.
If meditation is helpful, it may be beneficial to increase the frequency to twice or more per day or to use it to reduce stress whenever needed.
Tips for better meditation
Meditation is a process-oriented undertaking that focuses on the moment, not on the results.
So enjoying the moment is key to successful meditation.
An individual should not judge whether the meditation session is good or bad, right or wrong. Instead, they should simply remain in that moment.
Meditation is a skill that takes time to master. Some people feel frustrated and even angry when they first attempt to meditate.
Remaining present in the current moment can be challenging, as can focusing on a single mantra without getting distracted.
Whatever their immediate reaction, a person should persist with their mediation practice. Key is to accept the thoughts that appear without judgment or anger. Some novices may benefit from enrolling in a class or having the support of a teacher.
Meditation is a simple strategy that can help obtain better health and a happier life. It takes time to master, as does any other skill. If a person sticks with it and is willing to experiment with the different methods, they are more likely to discover a meditation style that suits them.