10 Bad Habits That Meditation May Help Eliminate

Anyone who has ever been curious about meditation may already know from previous studies that it actually changes the brain, providing a range of both mental and physical benefits. That may sound somewhat exciting, but without the practical details, maybe it’s not enough to make meditation a serious part of your life just yet.

Well, it’s time to get rolling. Here are just 10 habitual problems people tend to struggle with often on a daily basis that meditation may actually help eliminate from your life for good.

1. Overeating.

Too many people eat in a hurry these days, scarfing down their meals in front of their TVs and computers while they watch Netflix or try to catch up on some work. Because meditation increases your awareness, you may find yourself naturally starting to focus more during meal times, from smelling and tasting to chewing and swallowing your food. Heightened awareness while eating means less overeating!

2. Bad posture.

If you meditate properly, meaning sitting up straight with your back flat against a chair or a wall, it may force you to realize how much you slouch throughout the rest of the day. You may have never really noticed it before, but even spending just a few minutes a day maintaining good posture during meditation can be powerful enough to influence your posture throughout everyday life too.

3. Acting on impulse.

Meditation is brain training, so people who do it regularly have better control over how they react to certain problems and distractions that tend to pop up. When you start to meditate, you may find yourself taking a moment to observe your thoughts first when someone criticizes you before lashing out to defend yourself—or you may find yourself less distracted by internet browsing when you should be getting real work done.

4. Addiction to technology.

Similar to the last point, meditation helps you avoid finding your mind latch onto easy stimulation like TV, social media, video games and checking your phone every five minutes. Studies have shown that because meditation impacts the self-control regions of the brain, people are able to recover better from even very serious addictions like smoking.

5. Forgetting things you should be able to remember.

Forgetfulness isn’t just inconvenient—it’s also pretty embarrassing. A team of Harvard researchers demonstrated that meditation helps thicken cortical in the hippocampus, which is the part of the brain that deals with learning and memory. Besides an improved memory, you’ll probably notice some positive effects on mental strength and focus too.

6. Obsessing over your to-do list.

Thinking about everything that needs to get done today, tomorrow, this week or this month is easily overwhelming and can make you incredibly anxious—so much so that it may force you to avoid it altogether. The same Harvard study mentioned in the previous point found that meditation caused brain cell volume to decrease in the amygdala region, which is the area of the brain that’s responsible for survival-driven emotions like fear, anxiety and stress.

7. Never being able to get a quality night’s sleep.

Are you an insomniac? If you are, then meditation could really help. A small Harvard study found that insomniacs who completed a mindfulness awareness program resulted in less insomnia, fatigue and even depression. The simple fact that meditation helps you relax and quiet your mind may be just what you need to help you drift off to a deeper state of sleep every night.

8. Worrying over small personal problems.

Worrywarts often spend too much time and energy fretting over little problems—from traffic jams and work deadlines to the giant mess at home and the dog that just peed all over the new carpet. Meditation helps ground you in reality and feel more at peace with whatever’s going on, even if it’s an unpleasant situation. Your problems may not go away completely, but you’ll gain a new perspective when faced with them.

9. Bad management of bigger personal problems.

This sort of goes hand-in-hand with acting on impulse. When a big problem strikes, people tend to get swept up in all their thoughts and emotions, and as a result, they sometimes end up making bad decisions (or no decision at all). Meditation can help center you even in the most unfortunate situations, so you can observe your thoughts and emotions rather than letting them completely take you over and use you to make less efficient decisions.

10. The inability to accept yourself as you are.

Identity crises are quite common, and often the easiest thing to do is hide or even lie about the way you are (which only makes it harder to make any necessary improvements on yourself). When you start meditating, you may notice an increase in awareness about who you really are, despite any feelings of fear or shame that you’ve been trying to hide from. Meditation may not help you like yourself the way you are right now, but it can certainly help you accept yourself—which is the first real step needed to create change.

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5 Harsh Truths Nobody Tells You About Happiness

Photo Credit: Nickolai Kashirin

59 comments

Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus1 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

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Nikki Davey
Nikki Davey1 years ago

Something else to add to my "to do" list.

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Ricky T.
Ricky T1 years ago

11. Anxiety

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Caroline B.
Caroline B1 years ago

Okay, it's time for baby steps, five minutes a day, starting today's!

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Elena Poensgen
Elena Poensgen1 years ago

Thank you

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Elena Poensgen
Elena Poensgen1 years ago

Thank you

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Tiffany Schreiner

this is great..thx!

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Muriel Servaege
Muriel Servaege1 years ago

Thank you. This list is a good reminder.

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Leah C.
Leah C1 years ago

Might be time for me to start meditating!

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