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  Life   Health  06 Mar 2018  Beat stress levels by practicing meditation, says study

Beat stress levels by practicing meditation, says study

Published : Mar 6, 2018, 8:47 am IST
Updated : Mar 6, 2018, 8:47 am IST

Team of two scientists provides some handy tips to help the people to regularly do meditation in order to beat the stress levels.

Numerous studies suggest meditation could help in relieving anxiety and reducing stress levels.
 Numerous studies suggest meditation could help in relieving anxiety and reducing stress levels.

Washington DC: Gone are the days when you could get away with the excuse of a hectic day at work to avoid meditation.

A team of two scientists have provided some handy tips to help the people to regularly do meditation in order to beat the stress levels.

Various past studies have shown that the high stress levels could lead to array of health issues, including high blood pressure and various other cardiovascular diseases.

The American Psychological Association study suggested that the stress levels among the American natives have been increasing for the first time in ten years, reports NBC News.

Further, there are numerous studies suggesting that meditation could help in relieving anxiety and reducing stress levels, further reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

"Real people living busy lives can meditate successfully on their seven-year-old couch, in bed alone or next to their snoring partner, in the passenger seat of their car, at work, at the kitchen table, in the backseat during a road trip, in a bus or a plane seat, said researcher Light Watkins.

"And that's as it should be, because if you are waiting to find yourself atop a cliff-side or in a white, sparsely furnished room in order to feel like you can meditate, you're only going to meditate sporadically, and you're going to mistakenly conclude that what little benefit you are able to derive from your practically is magically linked to your serene environment which couldn't be further from the truth", he added.

Further Emily Fletcher founder of New York-based Ziva Meditation center highlighted the benefits and ease of practicing meditation.

"It feels just as delicious to drop into a meditation when you are feeling blissed out on a pillow with soft lighting as it does sitting at your desk at 2 pm right as your morning coffee wear off," said Emily Fletcher.

Watkins and Fletcher further suggested some techniques to start out with meditation.

Start Practicing

Watkins recommends meditation for 15 to 20 minutes right in the beginning of your day. One must sit upright with back relaxed and shoulders not withdrawn backward. Your hands and feet must be at ease and one could stretch the legs out in front. Set a timer and close your eyes.

Allow all thoughts

The practitioner must not try to instantly fall into a state of complete meditation. Unwanted thoughts and distractions are a part and parcel of the meditation process; rather remember all kinds of thoughts come through your way. Do not try to control your meditation.

Practice at your ease

The more consistently you meditate, the more mindful you will become, says Fletcher. He added, "Do your meditations whenever and wherever you can fit them in ten minutes is better than zero minutes". Watkins defines meditation as allowing the luxury to think about everything and nothing at the same time. This shall be accompanied with a slight to heavy feeling of forgetfulness.

Catch your Breath

Fletcher further mentions of Balancing Breath or alternate nostril breathing, which in Indian context is known as 'Anulom Vilom' as a warm up to meditation. It helps to balance the right and left hemispheres of the brain and has immediate energising and calming effects.

Another technique, suggested by Fletcher, is called 2X Breath. This involves breathing in for two counts through the nostrils and out through the mouth for four counts.

Feel the moment

Fletcher further mentions of 'Come to your senses' that could be easily done at all places. It involves closing your eyes and tuning into what your senses are experiencing one at a time.

Tags: meditation, stress, health and well being, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, american psychological association, anxiety