Guided meditation can help improve your mental health, boost your satisfaction at work, enhance your relationships, encourage creativity, and more. And using a guided meditation app is like having a meditation teacher in your pocket.
In this article, we explore how guided meditation can lead you right to a healthier, happier life. Plus, we reveal the best way to get started with guided meditation today. Let’s dive into the benefits of meditation!
1. Reduces Symptoms of Anxiety
If you experience anxiety, rest assured that you’re not alone. In the United States 40 million adults deal with anxiety every year. But just because anxiety is common, that doesn’t mean it’s welcomed—or that you have to put up with it!
The good news is that guided meditation for anxiety really works. It’s helpful whether you experience occasional anxiety over a specific event (like flying or a big presentation at work) or whether you experience generalized anxiety.
And there’s plenty of science to demonstrate why regular meditators enjoy so much more ease and calm. For example, one study of participants who did group guided meditation classes and at-home audio recordings enjoyed “a significantly greater reduction in anxiety” than participants who only had stress management education.
2. Helps Manage Stress
One of the many health benefits of meditation: It helps you manage stress. Whether it’s coming from your job, your family life, your health, or all of the above, the stress hormone cortisol can wreak havoc on your mental and physical health. High or chronic levels of cortisol can weaken your immune system and stress is a major factor in chronic inflammatory physical health conditions, like arthritis and other types of chronic pain.
Some forms of meditation and breathing exercises can help reduce the body’s resting heart rate and blood pressure as a result of the reduction in stress and anxiety.
Perhaps that’s why one poll found that 84% of people in the United States began meditating to reduce stress. Luckily, meditation for stress really works. One study found that participants who underwent an eight-week mindfulness-based stress-reduction program had a markedly smaller stress response than participants who didn’t receive the meditation.
3. Improves Relationships
One of life’s undeniable truths is that we need each other. Having someone to lean on—whether a partner, friend, or family member—makes life so much easier. But that doesn’t mean relationships themselves are always easy.
The longer we’re in relationships, the more flaws we may see in our loved ones. These perceived flaws can make us less satisfied in the relationship, leading to less happiness and a lower quality of life. But the great news is, guided meditation can help!
Three studies found that individuals who underwent a mindfulness practice had greater acceptance for their partner’s imperfections. This, in turn, led to greater relationship satisfaction over time. Talk about a good love story.
4. Helps Process Emotions
It’s normal to feel big emotions, but strangely enough, we don’t always know how to process them. And when we can’t process our emotions correctly, they may become more intense and more negative over time. Thankfully, a guided meditation program can help with that, too.
One lesser known benefit of guided meditation is that it can help you process your emotions. A 2019 study found that participants led through a brief mindfulness meditation practice reacted with less emotional intensity to positive and negative stimuli.
The participants also paid less attention to negative stimuli after meditating. Additionally, another study found that an intensive mindfulness practice reduced participants’ startle reflex. Being less jumpy and more calm can lead to the inner peace we all seek.
5. Fewer Negative Thoughts
Negative thoughts can ruin your day. Your mindset determines your life, and if you see everything through a negative filter, you can expect everything—from your relationships to your career and even your health—to suffer.
While we’d all like to flip a switch and be more optimistic, it typically takes some work. Thankfully, meditation works to help you think fewer negative thoughts. Many studies have proven this. One study found that participants guided through mindfulness meditation had fewer negative thoughts in response to negative images than those who didn’t receive guided mindfulness meditation.
6. Stops Emotional Eating
Emotional eating can have lots of triggers—from negative emotions and stressful situations to health issues and lack of sleep. And unfortunately, emotional eating can do damage to more than just your waistline. It can result in physical issues like high blood pressure and fatigue, and emotional issues like low self esteem.
It may surprise you to learn that emotional eating has very little to do with food and hunger. In reality, it’s almost exclusively about your mindset, which is why guided meditation is an excellent tool to help combat emotional eating.
A systematic review of 14 studies found that when study participants were guided through a mindfulness meditation practice, it decreased their binge eating and emotional eating more successfully than those who didn’t practice mindfulness meditation.
7. Improves Sleep Quality
If you’ve ever struggled with a bout of sleeplessness or if you have chronic insomnia, you know how debilitating a lack of sleep can be. It impacts everything from your ability to focus at work to your ability to get along with loved ones at home. If you’re not interested in using medication to help you sleep (or have found that it doesn’t work well for you), try a guided meditation.
Many studies show the efficacy of meditation for sleep, including one where participants who were guided through mindfulness-based therapy enjoyed a reduction in total waking time and insomnia severity. Meditation for sleep can cause deep relaxation. When using meditation to help you catch some Z’s, it’s best to meditate lying down using a guided meditation app and a comfortable set of headphones.
8. Boosts Creativity
Looking to inject a little creativity into your life? Maybe you need some inspiration for your garden, studio, or pottery class. Or perhaps you’re trying to find a way to be more innovative at work. Regardless of what it is, guided meditation may be the answer. Many of the creative icons you admire, like Arianna Huffington, Joe Rogan, and even Jerry Seinfeld, have a regular meditation practice.
And there’s science to back this up. Study participants who meditated for 25 minutes before doing divergent and convergent thinking tasks came up with more creative solutions than their counterparts who didn’t meditate. Although you can meditate at any time of day, we recommend doing a guided meditation for creativity first thing in the morning. A morning meditation can lower your stress levels and get your creative juices flowing before breakfast. You never know when inspiration will strike!
9. Reduces Loneliness
For most of us, loneliness makes its way into our lives at one point or another. Maybe loneliness found you after experiencing a breakup, moving to a new city, or enduring empty-nest syndrome. Regardless of where it came from, chances are you know what it’s like to feel alone.
The good news: meditation helps you feel okay with feeling alone. Case in point: When study participants were guided through mindfulness training, they experienced less loneliness and increased their social interactions.
10. Improves Fulfillment at Work
Even if you have your dream job, it’s not dreamy all of the time. Every job has some less-than-satisfying components. Plus, as time passes, a job we were initially grateful for can become a job that we take for granted. Thankfully, meditation can help you get some of that career spark back.
One study found that participants who used a mindfulness meditation app enjoyed “significant improvement in well-being, distress, job strain, and perceptions of workplace social support.” Sounds like no more Sunday Scaries to us!
11. Boosts Attention Span
Are you having trouble focusing? Welcome to the club. Most of the modern media we consume—from social media to news clips—is designed to be ultra-quick and super engaging. This shortens our attention spans, causing us to lose focus when we need to finish a dense textbook chapter or prepare a lengthy presentation.
The good news is that you can strengthen your attention span with meditation! Meditation helps you flex and strengthen your attention muscles. Plus you can do specific meditations for improved focus.
And this improvement in focus is backed by science. In one study, participants who listened to a meditation tape could more accurately and quickly complete focused tasks than those who didn’t listen to the tape.
12. Improves Memory
Our memories naturally wane as we get older, but what if you’re already misplacing your glasses at age 30? But it’s not just age—there are many reasons we may have trouble remembering the things we need to. For instance, stress, anxiety, and depression can all wreak havoc on your memory. Happily, guided meditation can help you recover some of your memory skills, regardless of your age.
In fact, study participants who underwent an eight-week guided meditation program improved their working memories and their recognition memories compared to those who didn’t meditate.
13. Aids Weight Loss
Carrying around extra weight can lead to health issues like high blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes. It can also harm your self-esteem. But losing weight isn’t always easy. Weight loss starts with your mindset, so adding daily meditation to your diet and exercise regime makes sense.
In one study, participants who received mindfulness training enjoyed more weight loss than participants who focused on diet and exercise alone. Plus, they maintained their results at a two month check-in.
14. Easy to Get Started
Unlike other healthy routines that may take a lot of time, energy or equipment to learn, meditation is simple to do and doesn’t require any equipment. As long as you can tune into your breath, you can meditate. Plus, you can do it anywhere you need to, and any time you need to (even if that means meditating for five minutes between meetings at work). And if you want to make meditation even more accessible, you can use a meditation app like Primed Mind.
Get Started with Primed Mind’s Guided Meditation Primers
Meditation is a simple act that can have a lot of benefits. While you can try many types of meditation and meditation techniques, we suggest starting with a guided meditation app. It’s an excellent way to stay on track and motivated to meditate.
Our Primed Mind app leverages the power of hypnosis to quickly and easily guide you into the meditative state. Even those who’ve tried other guided meditation apps with little success, are able to use our app effectively. Our approach to guided meditation keeps your mind engaged, transforming meditation for something that feels like work, to something that easy and enjoyable to do. Plus, you can find guided meditation sessions to help you achieve specific goals, like reducing stress, losing weight, improving productivity, and increasing your creativity.
Primed Mind is a guided meditation app developed by one of the world’s leading mindset coaches. It’s free to download, and you can use it as often as you want from the comfort of your own home (or anywhere you happen to be).
With a wide variety of tailored meditations available, like “Get Organized,” “Be More Patient,” and “Embrace Big Change,” there’s a guided meditation designed to help you reach your goals. And you may be surprised at how few meditation sessions you need to see results. Download Primed Mind and get started with guided meditation today!