Whether you’re feeling stressed at work, are struggling with depression, or simply feel there’s room for improvement in your life, you’ve probably hear about the many miracle benefits of meditation.
Chief among them is that meditation can make you happier, even if you only practice it sporadically, or for a few minutes at a time.
In this post I’ll explain why.
Why Meditation Makes You Happy: The Practice
Put simply, meditation can make you happier because it teaches you to become self-aware.
As we go about our normal, day to day lives, we often become trapped in our heads. We have endless stories that we tell ourselves, some good, some bad, and we become accustomed to letting triggers in the external world dictate our mood.
Read more about how to deal with your inner critic.
Meditation reverses that. It causes you to look inward to develop your own source of happiness, by becoming aware of the natural, joyful energy that you already hold.
One goal of meditation is to become more aware of your thoughts. As you do, you realize that you are not your thoughts. They exist independently of you. Your true nature, the ‘you’ who experiences the world, exists beyond the confines of this world.
As you begin to realize this sense of Beingness, or “I am” nature, you develop presence of mind, which allows you to gain mastery over your thoughts and emotions, and to experience the world from a place of compassionate non-judgment.
Learn more about how to become more compassionate.
The Science: How Meditation Causes Happiness
Of course, there is a scientific explanation as to how meditation causes happiness as well.
When you meditate, you clear your mind, releasing it of negative thought patterns and tendencies. If you aren’t used to thinking about your thoughts and emotions, you might not even be aware how these patterns influence your everyday actions and behavior.
But, when you take the time to reset, you put yourself in a position through which you can gain control over your mind, relax, and smile.
Related Post: 13 Benefits of Smiling More.
When you meditate, you release a series of “happy hormones” into your brain, including dopamine and oxytocin. These chemicals calm your mind, and help you to experience more positive states of energy, from a feeling of relaxation and ease, to stronger feelings of joy, eagerness, and excitement.
These chemicals also kickstart a positive spiral: as you think good thoughts, you release more positive chemicals into the brain.
Over time, this enables you to be able to think more clearly, make better decisions, and come up with creative, more innovative solutions to any problems you may be facing.
Oh yeah, and they make you feel happier too.
If you want to improve your mood, try these small daily habits to be happy.