Most people know by now that practicing meditation helps to relieve stress and anxiety. Why? Because one benefit of meditation is that it can change your relationship with your experience. Using that same rationale, why couldn’t the same practice be used to help reduce pain? According to some, it can.
Checkout this recent Record post from Michael Roizen and Mehmet Oz. According to the doctors, while many experience chronic pain, using a mindfulness meditation practice might just hold the key to turning down its volume. Not to say that pain doesn’t exist. Rather, meditation helps to reorient one’s association to it.
Practising mindfulness a few minutes daily boosts your ability to focus by tuning out distractions like, yes, pain signals, and fears about pain — both mess with your memory. It improves your ability to recall important stuff (when you’re meeting your wife for dinner or where you put the dog’s leash).
Want to give it a whirl? Find a quiet place. Get comfortable. Close your eyes, and breathe in and out at a natural pace. Notice whether your breath feels warm or cool.
When other thoughts, feelings and sensations crop up, acknowledge them, and then gently refocus on your breathing. After about 10 minutes, open your eyes and re-enter the world slowly. You’ll go about your day feeling better.
Read more from the Roizen and Oz on using mindfulness meditation effectively to deal with your chronic pain here.