Does Meditation Increase stress?
Does Meditation Increase stress?
By Douglas Vermeeren
Often we hear regularly in our world that to think effectively we need to slow down and make our thoughts become still. We are told that as we learn techniques like mediation we will be able to become more in touch with our thoughts and they will become more productive. This is not entirely true.
While meditation has high value for your productive thinking processes it is only one kind or style of deliberate thought that our mind needs to cultivate for functioning at high levels.
In addition to mediative thinking there are two other productive thinking states I’d like to touch on, creative and constructive thinking. In the same way we bring out our different personalities in certain social settings, we also switch gears between different thinking styles depending on what a specific situation requires.
The Mediative Mode of Thinking – Mediative thinking is generally considered the kind of thinking that puts your mind at ease. While it can put a mind at ease research has demonstrated that it is not necessarily the mode of thinking that relieves the most stress. 1. In fact, research has demonstrated the opposite that often times when we are left to think on the problems of the moment they grow.
Example: A friend of mine who suffered a relationship breakdown and then a divorce confirmed that as she was left alone to think about what was going on it was near impossible to still her mind. In fact, the quiet moments often caused the intensity of her negative thinking to grow.
Depending on the current circumstances in your life mediation and being still is actually dangerous. (If you want to know where the true relief from stress comes, keep reading.)
Often those teaching mediation describe the most successful state of meditation is to think of nothing at all. It’s a lot harder than it sounds. The mind is always on a quest to solve, sort, prepare and repair. Clear thoughts won’t come until the mind has cleaned off the space to do so.
When the mind is clear and stable, meditation then becomes a very powerful tool. Mediation will allow us to reattach ourselves to the values, beliefs and feelings that are most important to us.
Meditation does have its place in building strong thinking. Generally this mode is also considered the recharge mode. It is where our empty cup is prepared to receive more. But if the cup is already full with significant problems it multiplies what is in the cup to overflowing.
When we are ready to receive more it comes most often through the next stage of deliberate thinking…
The Creative Mode of Thinking – When we are relaxed and feel safe, our mind begins to explore possibilities for our present and future. In a relaxed state our mind makes no judgements about what it is possible, it explores whatever it is drawn to. This is where much of our inspiration comes from. Creativity has a certain liberating energy about it that can lift an individual to new levels of satisfaction. Creative thinking is also employed every time we recognize a challenge or problem and begin to search for the solution in a spirit of hope. If we look at a problem in a negative way it becomes paralyzing and creative thought is stifled. All problems are in fact invitations to creativity. But the creativity only grows in an environment of hope.
Creation is our minds way of finding a path where there was nothing before and the method it uses to make sense of things which are otherwise disorganized.
All problems we encounter are really puzzles. Creativity is where we find the solutions.
When our mind becomes excited about creative possibilities it begins to look for a way to make them happen in real life…
The Constructive Mode of Thinking – The Constructive Mode of Thinking deals with the strategies, plans and organization to create the thoughts into reality. We begin to formulate the actions that will bring the thoughts into a tangible reality in our world.
The research demonstrates that this mode of thinking is in fact where most of our stress is relieved. As we get busy and engage our brain in tasks in the current moment our worries are put on pause. Our subconscious mind sorts them out while our conscious mind gets out of the way. The key to stress relieve or stilling the negative thinking in your mind is to get busy occupying your mind with a task that requires your thinking.
As we talk further about the process of how thoughts become things in the movie we will return to discuss more of this essential thinking mode.
Each of these modes is necessary. We can’t expect to have results if we spend all of our time in the mediation mode any more than to expect results if we spent all our time in the creative mode. Each of these modes are necessary and each are interconnected. You cannot fill the cup with creativity, unless it has been prepared in meditation and it cannot be prepared in meditation unless it has been emptied out in constructive thinking.
Douglas Vermeeren is the director of the SUCCEED Research Center which is dedicated to sharing research on the systems that top achievers use to create lasting success. Over the last decade Vermeeren has interviewed more than 400 of the world’s top achievers, including business leaders, celebrities and professional or Olympic athletes. Douglas Vermeeren is the author of Guerrilla Achiever (With Jay Levinson) and the creator of The Opus (with Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Dr. Joe Vitale, Dr. John Demartini, Dr. Sue Morter, Marci Shimoff, Bill Bartmann, Bob Doyle and Morris Goodman.) Currently Doug is completing another film entitled, How Thoughts Become Things. This film will explore the process of how our thoughts become manifest in our lives as reality. For more on this film go to: www.HowThoughtsBecomeThings.com For more on Douglas Vermeeren go to: www.SucceedResearch.com Douglas Vermeeren can be reached for speaking engagements and training at 1.877.393.9496.
1.Track your happiness, November 15, 2010 Reported in Washington AFP.