Mindfulness and meditation have been studied in top academic centers with increasing interest because of its powerful findings. Recently UCLA’s Mindfulness Awareness Research Center has confirmed that “significant research has shown mindfulness to address health issues such as lower blood pressure and boost the immune system; increase attention and focus, help with difficult mental states such as anxiety and depression, foster well-being and less emotional reactivity; and thicken the brain in areas in charge of decision making, emotional flexibility, and empathy.”
They go on to explain that “Mindful awareness can be defined as paying attention to present moment experiences with openness, curiosity, and a willingness to be with what is. It is an excellent antidote to the stresses of modern times. It invites us to stop, breathe, observe, and connect with one’s inner experience. There are many ways to bring mindfulness into one’s life, such as meditation, yoga, art, or time in nature. Mindfulness can be trained systematically, and can be implemented in daily life, by people of any age, profession or background.”
Extensive studies have also shown that people who meditate or focus on their breathe, or a focus on a positive emotion or memory or thought for even three minutes, 3 times a day, report being happier after 3 weeks of practice. Science suggests though that the optimal amount is 20 min a day; but again, states that even little practices make a difference.