There are one of three reasons why you’re reading this article:
- You have all the hottest and most frequently Instagram advertised meditation apps, but have yet to continue past level 3 – 4
- You’ve understood what meditation can do for your stress, energy levels, focus and weight management, but you just can’t find the time in your day to practice.
- Or, you have no idea what all the fuss is about/how the hell ‘focused sleeping’, as you see it, can help you lose weight and focus better.
Well whichever you might be, there are countless reasons why 15 minutes every day should be carved out for this centuries-old practice. Practicing consistently can reduce appetite, improve the quality of sleep and reduce stressors in your life – try it for one week yourself and notice the difference it can make.
1. Lose Weight with Meditation
Generally, the approach to weight loss has been eat less and exercise more. Then, health and fitness industries and services figured out it’s really more about what you’re eating, so we started eating better, cleaner foods overall. We turned away from the starvation model and focused on giving our body proper nutrition. Although we’ve come far, unfortunately, over 90% of people who go on diets, or ‘health kicks’ regain the weight plus more within 1 year. The reason? There is little focus on the self, the mental health, or the emotional connection we have with weight, our body image and food in general.
Meditation allows you to learn a lot of the habits that result in lifelong changes of attitudes we have towards food.
“In meditation, you get to the truth of why you consistently skip your morning workout or grab fast food each night on the way home. You can explore your motivations for weight loss and why you haven’t accomplished your goals. You can confront childhood programming such as being told you have to eat all the food on your plate. Most importantly, you can understand why weight loss has been an issue in the past and get to a place where you’re mentally prepared to stick to a weight loss program and get to (and keep) your ideal weight. You’ll also see the subconscious blocks that keep you from healthy change, such as fears built up from your childhood that are manifesting in self-sabotage.” – “Here’s How Meditation Helps With Weight Loss“, Forbes, 2018
2. Improve your sleep with Meditation
Does your mind race moments before you go to sleep about the most insignificant issues? Or do you think back to something you did weeks ago, and replay it in your mind endlessly? With 1 in 3 people have a sleeping issue, and the global sleeping aid market tipped to reach US$80 billion by 2020, there has never been a better time to start focusing on medication free methods to improve your sleeping habits. Sleeping tablets are like putting makeup on a pig – your not really solving the issue, you’re just covering up the ugly parts and avoiding the problem. Almost every type of sleeping issues is caused by stress, and meditation is the strongest tool you have to fight and cure it.
A study that appeared intested the real effects of meditation on 46, insomnia prone middle-aged men and women, for one year. Half completed a full meditation program, teaching them the steps involved in meditating, focusing not on sleep, but on focus, presence and control over their emotions. The other half completed a sleep education program that focused strictly on modern methods of improving sleep (i.e. reducing screen time before bed, reducing noise and having black-out rooms to sleep in). Those who were in the mindfulness group “had less insomnia, fatigue, and depression at the end of the” study.
Meditation as a complete practice not only gives your mind the tools to control wandering thoughts, but it improves the ability for you to calm your mind, deepen your sleep and access a level of relaxation you can’t even dream of.
How to meditate 101:
Watch this quick video for an intro to mediation and see how easy 4 minutes of meditation can be.