Great news: even a short meditation program can make you smarter

Are you looking for a way to sail more smoothly through life’s knock-down events, have more patience with your kids and coworkers, and rev up your thinking?  Try mindfulness meditation. 

Lots of meditation research has touted its powers to de-stress your approach to life, but new research from UNC says even a short program of mindfulness meditation can significantly help you focus and think faster!  Who can’t use some of that? 

Here’s how their article described the meditation program:

The meditation training involved in the study was an abbreviated “mindfulness” training regime modeled on basic “Shamatha skills” from a Buddhist meditation tradition, conducted by a trained facilitator.  As described in the paper, “participants were instructed to relax, with their eyes closed, and to simply focus on the flow of their breath occurring at the tip of their nose.  If a random thought arose, they were told to passively notice and acknowledge the thought and to simply let ‘it’ go, by bringing the attention back to the sensations of the breath.”  Subsequent training built on this basic model, teaching physical awareness, focus, and mindfulness with regard to distraction.

Here’s the results:

The meditation group scored consistently higher averages… on all the cognitive tests and as much as ten times better on one challenging test that involved sustaining the ability to focus, while holding other information in mind.

You can find Buddhist centers in many towns and cities that offer inexpensive meditation programs to the public.  Or find tapes and websites you like.  We offer specific meditations occasionally in our mini-coaching program for members of the Global Institute for Awakening.  (Join today and change your life with us by establishing one awakened habit per month!)

Links/Resources:
• UNC article:  http://www.publicrelations.uncc.edu/default.asp?id=15&objId=656 
• Pubmed article:  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20363650 
• Benefits of membership in Global Institute for Awakening:  http://www.GIAwaken.com/benefits