Meditation is a popular technique for relaxation and stress relief that can significantly increase your ability to concentrate and focus. The focus is the ability to pay attention to one thing at the expense of all the others, which can be very difficult in a society that emphasizes multitasking and success. Increasing the ability to concentrate can encourage creativity, promote problem-solving skills, and decrease the stress associated with handling more than one task at a time. Focused meditation can help you improve your attention and keep you focused for longer periods of time.
When you look at a particular object during meditation, you learn to pay less attention to other distractions. Over time, focused meditation helps many people feel less annoyed by disturbances, such as a loud car alarm or the sounds of people arguing. Interestingly, meditators also show an improved ability to intentionally divide their attention between multiple things. Meanwhile, long-term meditators (Buddhist monks in one study) seem to have stronger connections between various areas of the brain, which could further contribute to concentration.
To learn more about the brain mechanisms underlying these changes, about a decade ago, neuroscientists began using fMRI machines and other brain scans to look inside the minds of people who had regularly practiced mindfulness meditation for years. Some studies suggest that meditators have reduced activity in the insular, a region of the brain responsible for pain perception, which could explain why they report feeling lower levels of pain when exposed to the same painful stimuli (for example, putting their hands in a bucket of ice water) as non-meditators meditators. Last week, a UCLA study found that long-term meditators had better-preserved brains than non-meditators as they aged. There has been a growing interest among educators and researchers in bringing meditation and yoga to schoolchildren, who are dealing with the usual stressors within school and often with additional stress and trauma outside of school.
The study found that focused meditation improved participants' convergent thinking, or the ability to think about a specific solution to a well-defined problem. Practicing this type of behavior, scientists say, seems to improve meditators' ability to control their emotions even when they are not meditating. In experiments, he and others have found that regular meditation seems to improve people's concentration and emotional control, in particular. This may be because meditation helps people “decouple the state of desire from the act of smoking, so that one does not always have to lead the other, but rather you fully experience and overcome the “wave of desire”, until it passes.
It's too early, but some small studies have suggested that it may reduce cravings in long-term smokers and improve symptoms in people with general anxiety disorder, compared to non-meditators. Consequently, there is hope that meditation can be a useful tool for treating things such as anxiety disorders and addictions. You generally focus on sensory stimuli such as sounds, visual elements, tactile sensations, tastes, smells, and even your own breathing, much like mindfulness meditation techniques. Meditation has the power to help you focus, improve your focus, and even be used as a tool to overcome procrastination if practiced consistently, of course.
Fifteen of these studies were randomized controlled trials, which compared the changes that non-meditators experienced after a period of meditation with those of people who never meditated. .