Meditation? Isn’t that just for Buddhists or people who practice yoga? The short answer? No. It’s now so popular even celebrities swear by it, with many people claiming it to be life-changing. I am one of them. Meditation is an incredible tool for bettering your mental health and by practicing you can significantly benefit from its power. Here are the 5 reasons you need to meditate.

Still your hectic mind

Anyone have days when they try to go to sleep but your head is whirling around with thoughts? I’ve laid awake for hours worrying, going over things and thinking about things that haven’t even happened. Can you imagine that not happening? Since meditating, and making sure I turn off electronics before bed, I have found a significant improvement to my sleep. My mind stops going full pelt and actually has allowed me to relax and hit the pause button.

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Get a handle on anxiety

My anxiety is a tricky beast. I’ve had anxiety for years, and like many, suffered in fits and starts. Thing is, anxiety rears its ugly head in testing times, but with the tools meditation gives us, we have the ability to get an objective view to our anxiety. I now look at it more logically, such as why am I feeling this way? Can I actually do anything about it? Or is it anxiety for anxiety sake? The funny thing is though since meditating I have noticed a big dip in anxiety, it’s not gone, I just have a handle on it. When I do feel anxious I seem to be dealing with it more logically than I ever have before.

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Clear mindset

I found meditating hard to start with, hoping that I’d just close my eyes and be able to switch off and go with it. I was wrong. It took some time to master. I used the Headspace App to get me on the right path which I’d highly recommend for anyone interested. In some difficult scenerios, which I’d have struggled with previously, such as an awkward conversation or even things like nerves before a presentation, I have this welcomed blank canvas. When things start to boggle my mind, I meditate. It brings me clarity and calms in what can feel like a storm. Once I have a clear mindset I can tackle these situations with a better frame of mind, rather than irrational behaviour impulses. That is not to say that you need to suddenly stop to meditate when you are presented with a hard challenge, but it does help to put you on the better path in how we approach situations.

Positive outlook

I’ve got a better outlook on my life and life in general. I am human and I do have ‘human moments’ where I will suddenly have a surge in emotion, but I am far quicker to nip it in the bud than I was. I also feel more positive. Meditation helps us still the mind in a way like nothing else, and because of that, I’ve become more optimistic about life. Who doesn’t want to be happy and calm about daily life?

Embrace the present

Life is quick and things happen at a fast pace. I was part of that crazy race for quite some time, but soon learnt it made me into someone I didn’t like. I was stressed, anxious, uneasy, unapproachable and a bit of a fun sponge. Since meditating for around 6 months I’ve developed a new found appreciation to be in the present. The ability to keep focused on the here and now, which has made me far more grounded.

Ever tried meditation? If like me you suffer from anxiety, I’d strongly suggest trying an app like Headspace or Calm to get your started. As someone who has spent many years lots in my own thoughts, this is one of the best tools I’ve ever developed. Just have a little patience and you’ll get there too.