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3 Myths About Meditation

Yiwen Lu, MS, RD
November 20, 2023
December 20, 2023

Meditation offers numerous benefits. In recent years, it has gained widespread recognition for its ability to alleviate stress, improve sleep quality, and enhance focus. However, several misconceptions still surround this practice, preventing many from fully embracing its potential. In this article, we debunk three prevalent myths about meditation, shedding light on its accessibility and the advantages it offers.

Myth 1: Meditation is Only for Spiritual or Religious Individuals

A common misconception is that meditation is exclusively reserved for those who are spiritual and hold religious beliefs. While meditation indeed has deep roots in various traditions, it has transcended these origins and is now a universally accessible practice.

During meditation, you focus on your breath to create a space for self-reflection and inner peace. By directing your attention to the rhythm of your breathing, you promote relaxation by allowing your mind to become still. This practice doesn't require any specific spiritual or religious affiliation.

Research has shown the plethora of ways how meditation can be beneficial. For example, a study in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology discussed that mindfulness-based therapy can help with anxiety and mood issues. Another study in Psychiatry Research discovered that meditation can increase regional brain gray matter density which may lead to improvements in learning, memory, and emotional control.

Myth 2: You Only Need to Meditate When You Are Stressed

Another myth suggests that meditation should only be employed when you're feeling stressed. While meditation is indeed effective for stress management, its benefits extend well beyond momentary relief. Waiting until stress hits before meditating overlooks the proactive advantages that regular meditation can provide.

Consistent meditation enhances your state of awareness. By acknowledging your thoughts and feelings and allowing them to pass during meditation, you promote emotional regulation and mental clarity through mindfulness. Regular meditation lays the foundation for resilience and mental strength. Just like how you can’t  achieve your desired physique in one day, but need to consistently go to the gym, meditation requires the same level of dedication.

Myth 3: It Takes Years of Practice to Benefit from Meditation

It's a common misconception that meditation takes years of dedicated practice before you can see any benefit. While meditation is undoubtedly a skill that deepens with time, the notion that only seasoned practitioners can experience its advantages is far from accurate. The benefits of meditation are cumulative, meaning that consistent practice, even in small doses, can gradually bring about transformative effects. Moreover, meditation is adaptable to individual preferences and schedules. Starting with shorter sessions and gradually increasing the duration allows beginners to build their practice progressively without feeling overwhelmed. The key is consistency rather than immediate mastery.


I hope you now understand that meditation is not confined to specific beliefs. It is not limited to times of stress,and it does not require years of experience to yield positive results. Meditation is flexible and adaptable. People from all backgrounds can use it to improve their well-being and life quality. If you are new, try guided meditation first. Enjoy the journey!

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