For his book “Tribe of Mentors”, Tim Ferris sent 11 questions to 140 high-performers at the top of their fields. What he learned was quite surprising: The vast majority (90%) of these successful people, regardless of profession, practice mindfulness meditation daily. Jimmy Fallon, Maria Sharapova, Bear Grylls, Larry King, and Yuval Noah Harari are some of the names that have adopted this habit.
Then what it is about meditation that makes high performers practice it? With a bit of skepticism, I’ve started meditating myself and learned the following: Mindfulness meditation is a state of clear and undistracted attention to the contents of consciousness. It is the observation of your own thoughts, whether they are pleasant or unpleasant. You become more aware of the present moment. This, I’ve experienced as a positive influence throughout the day after I meditate in the morning.
After doing some more research on the topic, I found that scientific research and experience from many others have shown that cultivating this quality of mind reduces pain, anxiety, and depression; improve cognitive function; and even produces changes in gray matter density in regions of the brain related to learning and memory, emotional regulation, and self-awareness.
Not bad right?
The fun part is, this mindset you can train like a muscle. With the simple habit of meditating only 10 minutes a day, you can increase the quality of your life significantly. Meditation can act as a very powerful mental tool that provides perspective in bad situations and gives clarity of mind when you feel overwhelmed. Of course, just like training a muscle, it takes time before you can really see the benefits of practicing meditation. Try it, and have a little patience. You will notice the difference eventually.
This is a quote from Sam Harris on mindfulness meditation: “Some people are content in the midst of deprivation and danger, while others are miserable despite having all the luck in the world. This is not to say that external circumstances do not matter. But it is your mind, rather than circumstances themselves, that determines the quality of your life. Your mind is the basis of everything you experience and of every contribution you make to the lives of others. Given this fact, it makes sense to train it.”
Not convinced? Here is a video that sums up the advantages of Meditation: The Scientific Power Of Meditation
This is a small list of meditation apps I can recommend if you also want to try and pick up the habit of mediation:
Good luck meditating!