There is much documented evidence as to the benefits of meditation which can be seen not just in the psychological and spiritual but also in the physical body. The image above highlights just a few proven benefits and all of them, would certainly help any Fibromyalgia sufferer who is likely to deal with more than one of those issues above. Given that stress plays a huge part in escalating our symptoms, it is logical that we should be looking for ways to reduce our stress levels and work to bring about as much calm to our body and mind as possible.
Our body, mind and spirit are linked and therefore making improvements in one area, will almost certainly have a positive impact on the other two. Can you imagine not having any pain in your body, how would that make you feel? It would almost certainly raise your spirits and bring calm to your mental wellbeing, emotionally you would, I suspect feel much better.
Studies have shown that with a consistent meditation practice, the practitioner begins to see life from a different and more objective viewpoint which then begins to resonate in all areas of their lives not least in their personal and work relationships. However, it is important to point out that the benefits come with continued practice over a period of time. Once in a blue moon will not do it, you must commit to a daily, twice weekly or weekly practice to have any hope of seeing the wonderful benefits which can come from meditation.
I think before we talk about what meditation is and how one can incorporate it simply into daily life, I think it is important to state what meditation is not.
- Meditation is not sitting up doing nothing
- You are not sleeping sitting up
- You are not having a little rest
- You are not thinking of nice things
- Meditation is not a breathing exercise
- It is not an escape from reality
- It is not about concentrating a lot
- You are not just sitting and thinking
I have been told several times by a dear friend and Buddhist monk that meditation can not be taught. It is a practice which is very personal and even though the basics are the same, there are many ways to achieving a meditative state and it is a case of determining what works for you. The one thing which is common to many people when practicing meditation is “resistance”.
Meditation can be perceived as being hard or difficult given that most people struggle to stay still and just be, we have need to stay in control. We tend to put obstacles in our way and protest that it is impossible to switch off ones thoughts. The reality is that we are vulnerable and letting our thoughts go for even just a short time is unnerving and makes us feel uncomfortable. Thinking is a habit we have cultivated from birth and if we can break that habit even for just small amounts of time it will result in our bodies becoming more relaxed and we will see a reduction in anxiety and negative emotions.
A comprehensive definition of meditation can be found by following this link
Meditation and Fibromyalgia
Meditation has proven benefits for Fibromyalgia sufferers and there is a good article on http://www.fibromyalgia-symptoms.org supporting this, so I have shared their findings below.
Meditation has recently been shown to be very effective in reducing the stress levels and symptoms associated with fibromyalgia syndrome. If you have fibromyalgia, techniques of meditation can help to improve your sleep patterns and reduce your fatigue. Meditation techniques can also help to reduce your pain levels, as it decreases the levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, in your body.
In a 1993 study involving 77 fibromyalgia patients, it was found that daily meditation improved most fibromyalgia symptoms. 51% of participants reported moderate to marked improvement in their symptoms. In 1998, a study on meditation and fibromyalgia found that meditative practices lessened the achiness, sleeplessness, muscle pain, and depression experienced by fibromyalgia patients.
For me personally, since introducing meditation into my life, I have seen positive benefits. It is still not easy and I will share some links to some short guided meditations which have helped me. I find little and often helps me, just a few minutes at a time pays dividends.
There is a great app that I use for guided sessions from just 2 to 30 minutes from a site called Calm.
One of my favourite You Tube guided meditations – just 10 minutes in the morning sets me up for the day.
Another guided meditation to finish your day which takes you around your body to calm and relax.
Enjoy and please leave me a comment below, let me know what you thought. Do you meditate and have you found it useful in alleviating some of your Fibro symptoms?