How the brain changes when you meditate

brain exercising

Meditation and mindfulness is exercise for the mind. Source:

Through growing research on brain neuroplasticity, researchers can tell us practical ways to positively affect our brains, which means affecting our experience of life.

I pay attention to such articles because it validates what I personally have experienced in the last 5 years – when I intentionally changed the way I think using meditation as a tool, it became easier to think more positively and take challenges in life with more ease.

Practicing meditation and mindfulness are tools that help you be more self-aware, and then you can set your focus and attention on more positive thinking.  These are skills that anyone can learn, but you have to do the practice to get the benefit.

Here is an excellent article from ‘How the brain changes when you meditate’.  World-renowned neuroscientist Richard Davidson is in the speaker line-up with me at UC Berkeley’s ‘Mindfulness and Well-Being at Work’ conference in November.  He reports this about the brain:

  1. You can train your brain to change
  2. That the change is measurable, and
  3. New ways of thinking can change it for the better.

We can intentionally shape the direction of plasticity changes in our brain. By focusing on wholesome thoughts, for example, and directing our intentions in those ways, we can potentially influence the plasticity of our brains and shape them in ways that can be beneficial. That leads us to the inevitable conclusion that qualities like warm-heartedness and well-being should best be regarded as skills.

Meditation is not just about stress reduction, which most people assume.  There are countless benefits ranging from stress reduction, increased health, spiritual growth and changing your brain. There are too many to list, but the benefits are well worth the investment of your time and effort to cultivate the practice!

The Calm Monkey new wesbsite

See The Calm Monkey’s new website, focusing on meditation in the workplace.

Have a wonderful day, and please visit the new site.



4 thoughts on “How the brain changes when you meditate

  1. Great article. I do believe that the Anterior Cingulate Cortex also gives our pain it’s unpleasantness. Pain is read two ways. The pain itself, the physical stimulus and then we color it with the Anterior Cingulate Cortex:.

    Mindfulness has enormous power when practiced and applied vigorously

    • Hi Marty, sounds like you have quite an understanding of the brain and mindfulness. Would like to hear any specific stories of mindfulness being applied successfully if you’d like to share them!
      Have a wonderful day.

  2. When we discover the peace, joy and tranquility within, we don’t have to search for it outside in people, places and things. This is the joy of meditation for me.

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