Recently, the lead singer of a famous rock band – Linkin Park – committed suicide after a long struggle with depression. Chester’s death caused massive ripples the world over. Many people who grew up listening to his music were shocked by the sad news. Outwardly, no one saw the sadness that clouded his heart like a black veil. Many people live with depression today, a condition that’s often is exacerbated by a culmination of numerous stressful events. The symptoms of depression vary from one individual to another. However, if you’ve been feeling “low” for several weeks and these emotions are interrupting your normal lifestyle, you might be suffering from clinical depression. If you suffer from clinical depression seek professional help, but also try meditation.
Meditation for depression
Most people wonder: can meditation help with depression? Before delving into this important issue, it’s crucial to understand how mindfulness meditation affects our overall health. Meditation helps us to become more aware of what’s happening around us. It also allows us to discover all those deep-seated emotions lingering within us. They could be anger, stress, anxiety or worry. There are numerous distractions and pressures in the modern world that can prompt us to lose touch with our emotions and feelings. If we’re not paying attention, we can end up burying these emotions, turning ourselves into zombies.
But can meditation cure depression?
The mental, spiritual and emotional awareness that meditators achieve helps them to notice the early signs of anxiety, stress and depression, helping them to deal with these issues better. Something remarkable happens when we start meditating: we identify who we really are, our flaws and our strengths. After getting a better understanding of ourselves, we’re able to fully accept ourselves for who we truly are. We live in the moment, enjoying the beauty of nature and our surrounding. We also learn to be compassionate with others – a beautiful trait that’s quite elusive to harness.
Rachel Parrish, a distinguished meditation teacher, talks about how meditation can help us change our habitual patterns. She emphasizes that practicing daily meditation can give you a new lease on life by helping you drop those habits you’re struggling with. Guided meditation for depression is a great way to help you cope with this corrosive condition. There are a few meditation apps you can download for this purpose, but the Mindworks Meditation App is highly recommended. This app not only guides you through your daily meditation sessions, it also contains numerous mindful talks by advanced meditation teachers such as Rachel.
Effectiveness of meditation in managing depression
If you’re still wondering does meditation help depression? This study conducted in the UK by researchers at University of Exeter will provide some conclusive results. In the study, 24 patients suffering from anxiety and depression were divided three times. One group received normal behavioral treatment, the second received yoga meditation and the third didn’t receive any treatment.
After 6 months, the group that received yoga meditation treatment recorded a significant decline in anxiety and depression symptoms. They also exhibited improved mental health. Their conditions improved significantly compared to the other two groups – one that was treated with conventional behavioral treatment and another that received no treatment.
The results of the 6-week study shed light on the effectiveness of meditation in improving symptoms of clinical depression. The study proved that meditation could be used to help patients suffering from depression to cope with the symptoms of this condition. In fact, the effect of meditation was found to be more pronounced than CBT (Conventional Behavioral Treatment). So can meditation help with depression? It definitely can.
Symptoms of depression
Here are the signs to look out for if you suspect someone you love is depressed:
- Restlessness and feeling slower than usual
- Constant irritability, sadness or tension
- Reduced ability to concentrate or make decisions
- Reduced interest in common hobbies and activities
- Feeling hopeless, worthless and guilty
- Feeling tired all the time and loss of energy despite lacking any kind of workout
- General change in sleeping pattern
- Drastic change in appetite which can be accompanied with weight gain or weight loss
- Thoughts of death or suicide
Guided meditation for depression, coupled with proper counseling, can help you overcome this agonizing condition. Meditation will also help you achieve holistic results in the long run to lead a happier and more balanced life.