Does Meditation Work? (Results of my Meditation Challenge)

Does Meditation Work? #meditation #mindfulness #calm #focus #choosemuse

A couple weeks ago I started my meditation challenge to answer the question: does meditation work? Specifically, I wanted to see if a small, but consistent amount of meditation would help me regain focus and calm. This is a short (2 minute) video that explains what meditation is and how it helps.

As you may remember, I am meditating with Muse, the brain sensing headband. I like Muse because it provides me with real-time data on each meditation session. I usually did 1 or 2 sessions that lasted 5-10 minutes. So, my total time commitment was minimal.

Does meditation work? Here are my observations:

  • I do feel better overall.
  • If you haven’t been meditating, 5 mins of silence is a long time!
  • I actually started to crave meditation. It was different then looking forward to it; it really felt like my mind telling me I needed it.
  • I have a frequently sore back muscle and it didn’t bother me at all during my meditation challenge.
  • When I meditate at night, I tend to fall asleep.
  • My results generally showed more calmness on weekends.
  • Even a very small amount of meditation helps.

 

meditation on muse In this session, I got into a nice calm place pretty quickly. Towards the end I kept dozing off.

 

muse image And on this one, I just struggled during most it. You can see my mind was very active, especially during the second half.

 

This short article explains how the brain changes with meditation – leading to more focus, calm, less anxiety and reactivity. Sound good? Give it a try. The key is to just keep practicing everyday and you will gradually strengthen the parts of the brain that regulate, plan, and think.

Sharon Martin, a licensed counselor and psychotherapist in the San Jose area, specializes in helping adult children of alcoholics and others who struggle with anxiety, perfectionism, and self-criticism. She has a private psychotherapy practice in CA where she is available for online counseling. Sharon is also the author of The CBT Workbook for Perfectionism and write the blog Conquering Codependency for Psychology Today.

3 Comments

  1. What an interesting app! I am intrigued. Thank you for sharing your results, especially the statement about not experiencing back pain, because I can see that being a reason not to try meditation for many people.

  2. Thanks for sharing! I recommend meditation to anyone. Like you mentioned, the key is to start small and eventually you will “crave” the peace it brings afterwards.

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