For years, I was a prisoner of my thoughts, seemingly powerless to the cruel circumstances that life had bestowed upon me.
My mind was caught in a proverbial hamster wheel that kept reaching the same conclusion: that my personhood had no worth, and that for some unknown reason, I was not enough.
And yet we do not have the same attitude towards attention.
Attention is a finite resource — the upper bound for an individual’s attention is 24 hours in any given day.
The threat of predators has been replaced by a media assault, but the reactiveness that was programmed into our brains has remained constant.
That media assault is augmented by familial responsibilities, social obligations, and professional demands, forcing us into a perpetual state of motion.
Meditation has emerged into the public consciousness in the last couple of decades, and research into their effectiveness for mental health disorders has proliferated.
A 2016 review & meta-analysis of studies on mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) validated previous studies that found MBCT to be more effective than cognitive therapy or standard psychiatric medication to prevent depressive relapse.
For those with depression, we excessively ruminate on the past; for those with anxiety, they agonize about the future.
Meditation offers the tools to escape these self-destructive mental loops, and detach yourself from patterns of thought that plague your everyday existence.