Meditation is a powerful, yet simple technique to synchronize both mind and body. In recent years, scientific trials have proven the many health benefits of this ancient practice. From reducing stress to boosting sleep and general feelings of well-being. Needless to say, meditation’s popularity has come with several misconceptions about what it can and cannot not. One of them is the belief that meditation can act as a form of therapy for substance abuse and psychological issues. Sounds too good to be true, right? So, it’s time to address the myths and clarify what meditation can actually do for you.
Let’s begin with the basics: what is meditation? How can it benefit us? There’s nothing religious or supernatural about meditation. It’s basically the practicing of being still, fostering awareness, and letting your mind rest. Have you ever sat on the grass, silently observing the grass — not too bothered about issues at home or pending duties? If so, you’ve already tried some sort of meditation! This doesn’t mean that meditation is about ignoring your problems or “clearing your mind”. Rather, it means that you contemplate your thoughts without being too involved, without judging.
Practicing meditation for a longer period of time can help you understand how your mind works. In short, you identify how your beliefs, excuses, and negative emotions, keep you distracted. You dig in deeper into the unconscious mind, which is the one actually directing how you think and act. Sound pretty much like therapy, right? So, it would make sense to say that meditation is an effective replacement. Well, let’s see what science has to say.
Can meditation replace therapy?
There’s so much we have to discover about the wonders of meditation. To date, many researchers believe that practicing meditation can help treat conditions such as anxiety disorders, depression, and addictions. However, most of the studies look at the effects of meditation in addition to traditional therapies. This means that someone who is seeking treatment for substance abuse can meditate and receive Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to gain a greater understanding of their behavior and cope with withdrawal symptoms.
Sometimes, there are deep-rooted issues that stem from trauma, abuse, and genes. Attending talk therapy, for example, can make a huge difference. It may seem like a less than a basic idea — talking to a person. But there’s much more to it! Sometimes, we simply need to talk about our thoughts and emotions to work out what is really bothering us and what we can do about it. A professional therapist has been specially trained to do this and can offer a helping hand when friends and family cannot. Plus, these therapies can be useful when there are mental health issues that make meditation difficult and counterproductive.
Does this mean that you should skip meditation and jump straight into therapy? Not exactly. For many people, meditation has had the same effect as conventional therapy and this is completely OK — their experiences should not be invalidated. However, experts recommend a good balance between holistic and traditional approaches. What we can say today is that, if you are seriously struggling with your mental health and like you are unable to cope with everyday life, seeking professional help is the first thing to do. Then, meditation can be an excellent addition to your treatment.
Adding meditation to your everyday life
If you are ready to add meditation to your routine or would just like to learn more, there are a few things to bear in mind. There are lots of types of meditation out there, including:
- mindfulness meditation
- sound meditation
- visualization meditation
- loving-kindness meditation
- walking meditation
- mantra meditation
- transcendental meditation
- progressive relaxation
- loving-kindness meditation
Feeling overwhelmed? Don’t be! This only means that you have plenty of options to choose from. And, when it comes to meditation, finding the approach that fits your personality and meets your needs is essential. At Synctuition, we have created a special program that combines several approaches into one unparalleled experience. The program combines music and binaural beats to help you enter a deep, meditative state.
Music therapy is a fairly new field. It has been gaining ground as a supplement to pharmaceutical and psychiatric interventions. For instance, listening to music and playing instruments have shown promising results when it comes to mood management. More specifically, listening to relaxing and upbeat music can have an uplifting effect on one’s state of mind.
It’s not a secret that music makes you feel better. Whenever you listen to your favorite song, you relax and feel joyful. Similarly, listening to workout playlists at the gym gets you in the mood for physical activity. This is not mere speculation — scientific trials have proven the many benefits of music during stressful or challenging situations.
A review from researchers at the Institute of Neurology in Rome, Italy states that music “may have physiological effects on blood pressure, cardiac heartbeat, respiration, and improve mood state in people affected by anxiety, depression and other psychiatric disorders”. More recent findings claim that “using music therapy during labor decreased postpartum anxiety and pain, increased the satisfaction with childbirth and reduced early postpartum depression rate. Music therapy can be clinically recommended as an alternative, safe, easy, and enjoyable non-pharmacological method for postpartum well-being.”
Another factor to consider is that you can achieve this elevation of mood by influencing the very “source” of the feelings themselves, brainwaves. Regulating the happiness brainwaves and triggering the release of the neuro-chemicals essential for maintaining a good mood and positive outlook is, in effect, tackling the problem at its foundation.
Why binaural beats?
Binaural beats are created when slightly different modified sounds are sent to each ear. To compensate for the difference, the brain creates a third sound — a binaural beat. Although there’s much to discover about them and their effects, binaural beats have been linked to a wide range of well-being benefits. Studies indicate that binaural beats can reduce stress, increase focus, and promote balanced modes. What’s more, they have the potential to induce the same mental state you would experience during meditation.
Synctuition’s sound journeys use binaural beats in a specific frequency range, the Gamma (~40Hz) range. Gamma brain waves promote heightened perception, learning, and problem-solving.
Try Synctuition’s incredible journeys to relax, lift your mood, and support your well-being.