Why Women Need to Meditate
Stress levels among women have been rising steadily for the past five years, outpacing men’s, says the American Psychological Association’s 2010 survey. Fifty percent of the women surveyed say they lose sleep at night because of stress and report that fatigue interferes with their willpower to exercise, choose better eating habits or make other healthy lifestyle changes. Other surveys have found that nearly twice as many women as men are affected by depression and anxiety. Women these days do not have to be convinced that they need more rest and rejuvenation. But many do need assurance that it’s okay to take the time.
Effortless and Easy Meditation
During the Transcendental Meditation technique, the mind can easily transcend its busy, agitated state and experience inner silence; the body relaxes and deep-rooted stresses dissolve. This transcending process takes one’s attention to the mind’s deepest level, one’s inner source of energy and intelligence.
Research in neuroscience has found that during TM practice, all the different parts of the brain begin to work together better as a whole. More efficient brain functioning naturally results in a healthier mind and body, better able to cope with and overcome stress.
Reduction of heart disease
We all know that meditation is a powerful stress-buster, and that when we’re less stressed we’re more emotionally available. But more important, research shows that the TM practice can beneficially impact the three main risk factors for heart disease: high blood pressure, high cholesterol and insulin resistance. Research funded by the National Institutes of Health found that people practicing the TM technique had 50% fewer incidents of heart attack and stroke, compared to controls. Because heart disease is the number one cause of death among women, here’s another obvious case of how TM practice can help ensure you’ll be there for others.
Activating Your “Inner GPS”
Many of our decisions are based on feeling or intuition. Yet stress and fatigue can cloud our mind and block our ability to access our finer feelings and make right decisions. The Transcendental Meditation technique can allow us to awaken more subtle, powerful levels of the mind—the place deep inside us where truth dwells. Even new meditators report that their insight improves and they begin to see more of the bigger picture. It’s as if we’re activating a trusty, built-in navigation system.
After just a few class sessions, students can meditate easily on their own at home, during a break at work—anywhere. Although many women have jam-packed schedules, twice-daily TM practice has become an essential part of their routine.
Relevant Scientific Research Findings on the Transcendental Meditation program
- More efficient brain functioning
- Relieves anxiety and depression
- Reduction of heart disease and stroke
- Emotional well-being
A meta-analysis found that the TM technique is significantly more effective in reducing trait anxiety than procedures of concentration or contemplation and other techniques. Journal of Clinical Psychology 45: 957-974, 1989.
Those practicing the TM technique showed a reduction of 43 percent in the risk of mortality, nonfatal myocardial infarction, or stroke, in comparison to controls. Circulation 120: S461, 2009.