Thinking of starting a meditation practice? A little overwhelmed? Check out what happens to you after just ONE time!
“Meditation for the First Time
Here’s what happens to the brain after someone completes just one meditation session who has never meditated before:
People start to become less ‘me’ centered as the brain balances the Ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC), which allows us to ruminate our worry, and the Dorsomedial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC), which allows us to empathize with others and feel more connected to those who we usually view as dissimilar to ourselves.
The fear-center is calmed via the amygdala and the two branches of the nervous system. You know that ‘uh-oh’ feeling you sometimes get? Meditation helps to make sure that you only feel low-level stress when you really need to, such as when you are about to put your hand on a hot stove, or you need to put the brakes on in traffic. Even then, meditation can help take the stress out of stress-full experiences.
The very first time you try to meditate, the mind calms down. It doesn’t mean you will experience profound inner peace the first time your bum touches a meditation cushion, but it does mean that you are already setting up new neural pathways that allow positive change. Each time you ‘sit’ again, you enhance them.
You’ll feel less depressed. Meditation is getting a lot of press lately because of this study by Mahav Goyal published at JAMA. 47 trials conducted with over 3,500 patients proved that meditation was as effective as anti-depressants. (The effect of meditation was moderate, at 0.3. If this sounds low, keep in mind that the effect size for antidepressants is also 0.3.) The difference is, of course, that meditation can’t kill you or cause other unwanted side effects, like psychotic episodes, panic attacks, hostility, etc.”
Excerpt from What Happens To People Who Meditate for the First Time, by Christina Sarich, June 29, 2015, http://www.collective-evolution.com.
Imagine the benefits if you develop a regular practice! I have been consistently meditating for the last six months. I try new mantras and things to keep it fresh, but I find I really like the simplicity of silence.
Give it a try. You can see from above that you have a lot to gain and nothing to lose.