Do you struggle with your mind training? Want to know how meditation can change your mind and affect your brainwaves? Read on and find out all about meditation and the brain, and how one affects the other.
Mindful meditation (the art of putting aside the past and concentrating only on the present) has recently been analyzed by a group of Harvard neuroscientists. The results that their research dug up are pretty interesting: the effects of meditation included neuroplastic changes to the gray matter in your brain.
The tests were conducted in this way: a group of 16 people were given a recording containing a 45-minute guided meditation exercise. They were instructed to use them at home everyday, and taught to use mindful meditation within the spare moments of their life (waiting for the bus, taking a shower, eating, cooking). On average, the people in the group were reported to use mindful meditation about 27 minutes each day.
The researchers then proceeded to use MRI scans on everyone’s brain in order to find a correlation between meditation and the brain, and did the same with another group that had not completed any mindful meditation training.
The results were stunning: the group that had practiced meditation had increased grey matter concentration in the left hippocampus, the posterior cingulate cortex, the temporo-parietal junction, and the cerebellum. These regions of the brain are well known to be involved in learning, memory and emotion regulation!
Britta Hölzel, lead author of the paper that was published following this research, stated:
“It is fascinating to see the brain’s plasticity and that, by practicing meditation, we can play an active role in changing the brain and can increase our well-being and quality of life. (…) This study demonstrates that changes in brain structure may underlie some of these reported improvements and that people are not just feeling better because they are spending time relaxing.”
If ever there were a better reason to pick up meditation practices, then you must tell it to me. If you want to pick up mindful meditation in the future, here is an easy guided meditation that you can use to start if you are new to it.
We hope you can change your mind through the positive effects of meditation and a powerful mind training.