What Happens to Your Brain When You Meditate? 

Have you ever wondered why people who meditate seem so happy and calm?

Or maybe you have just started a meditation practice yourself, and despite this newfound sense of awareness, you seem to have developed, you are still not fully aware of what exactly is going on.

Like, how do you explain how you initiated and handled that awkward conversation with your roommate like a champ, or that you got through your exam or work deadline without stressing for the first time?

This is because a lot is going on in the brain when we meditate.

Well, more like fewer things are happening. In either case, here are a few amazing things that happen to your brain when you meditate.

And before you tell us, you’re too busy to meditate or not good at sitting still… we will stop you right there… we all have time… it’s just where we choose to spend that time (values, priorities etc etc)… annnnnd, if you’re not good at sitting still, well then perhaps, meditation is exactly what you need! 

You become nicer from meditation

There is a part of the brain called the Amygdala that processes emotional stimuli. During meditation and even during the time that follows, this part of the brain experiences less activity.

When we practice meditation, we create more space for empathy and compassion because our mind focuses on the facts, working to keep us from reacting in a negative or super emotional way.

Rose Baudin would say, meditation helps us to see reality in all of its objectivity. No stories attached, no labels… we simply start to see things for exactly what they are.

But it is not just the Amygdala at work telling you to go ahead and surprise your parents with dinner or give a donation to a charitable cause. The temporal parietal junctures, which are tied to empathy, become more active in people who meditate.   

Umm… this is epic, right? Simply from sitting and breathing all of this magical stuff makes you nicer.  

Your memory improves from meditation

Are you that person who catches yourself saying, “sorry, my memory sucks,” all the time?

Really, we all wish we could remember things better, whether it’s in terms of where you put the keys, experiences, or details of a conversation.

If this sounds like you, look no further than meditation to get your memory back up to speed. 

People who meditate can recall things quicker and retain new facts, primarily because they can adjust their brain wave that is responsible for weeding out distractions.

Also, the way we can keep focus would have an impact on our memory. So if you also consider that meditation activates the part of the brain, the thalamus, that focuses our attention by screening through sensory data and reducing the signals of other incoming information, you can see how meditation helps us not to be so forgetful… because we’re better able to focus on the important stuff. 

You become less anxious from meditation

There is a part of our brain known as the medial prefrontal cortex that reacts strongly to upsetting or frightening triggers.

When we are anxious, we tell our brains we are under some form of attack, and our mind begins to forge stronger connections of these triggers or neural pathways.

Yet, when we meditate, we loosen these connections (omgosh… see, we all need to meditate more!).

You simply have more space and less repetitive thoughts

Of the (up to) 60000 thoughts you have a day, around 95% of them are repetitive and 80% are negatively geared.

Usually, the negativity comes from the way the mind is designed to label and judge things. This is good, this is bad, this is nice, this is not etc etc… this allows the brain to better understand exactly what’s happening.

However, what happens when the label or the judgment is simply made up? Thoughts like: I’m not good enough for that, I could never do that, why did I say that, I’m so fat… you get the picture.

When you meditate, the brain has space to realise the falseness of thoughts. The thoughts that are not true and the thoughts that are true.

The reality that is objective and the reality that is subjective. 

The goal is an objective reality. Here’s an example…

It’s a cloudy day, looks like rain…

One might say: oh this weather is awful… those grey clouds look scary!

Another might say: I just LOVE cosy weather like this, I feel so creative!

Both realities are subjective.

The objective reality is: there are clouds in the sky (full STOP).

You can see that when we welcome in objective reality, there is less room for suffering and less room for narrative in the mind… narrative that takes up space and time. 

When you meditate, you allow the mind to slow down and for you to become aware of the thoughts so you can then realise which thoughts you want to let go of (the ones that are holding you back and not serving you) and the thoughts. that can stay.

Ok… so now what? How can you start to meditate?

If you made it this far (well done for having such good concentration and focus!) then meditation must be calling you.

Here inside MerryBody Online Studio, meditation is a regular thing. And we want to share all these incredible meditation benefits with you!

We’ve found the easiest way to start meditating is through Yin Yoga and Guided Meditations. Both of which you can get unlimited access to when you become a MerryBody Member!

The best bit is that it’s all online, meaning you can fit it in with your life.

Join us today for unlimited access Yoga, Pilates, and Meditation, and let’s just see what happens.

We have a FREE 7 Day Trial for new members, so go ahead and get started today.

Any questions? Get in touch and we will get back to you!

Always merrymaking,

Emma + Carla


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