How Meditation Can Improve Mental Health

How Meditation Can Improve Mental Health

by Dr Emma Gray - 25th February, 2014

How Meditation Can Improve Your Mental Health

The benefits of meditation have long been recognised in Eastern cultures, both the physical and the psychological. More recently meditation has been included in therapy programmes for mental health, emotional, psychological and behavioural problems, in particular Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), as research looking at the beneficial effects on symptoms such as anxiety and depression is showing extremely positive outcomes.

The way meditation is thought to assist the individual suffering from symptoms such as anxiety and/or depression is by teaching them to direct and focus their thoughts in a more helpful direction, namely the present. Those experiencing high levels of anxiety and/or depression appear to spend a disproportionate amount of time negatively evaluating the past and making catastrophic predictions about the future.
Meditation teaches the individual to refocus their attention on the present the idea being that this is the only experience that we are able to actual influence. By reducing unnecessary, inaccurate and unhelpful past and future thinking, focusing one’s attention on the present can also increase an individual’s enjoyment of the moment they are actually in, which serves as a powerful antidote not only to anxiety and depression but also to low self esteem and confidence.

The results have been so dramatic and long lasting that the Clinical and Counselling Psychologists at The Harley Psychology & Therapy Group are now routinely including meditation in their therapy programmes for a range of problems experienced by their patients including Anxiety, Depression, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTDS), Eating Disorders (including Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia Nervosa, Binge Eating Disorder and Eating Disorders Not Otherwise Specified). With a centres for therapy in Richmond, Fulham, Clapham, Marylebone, Islington, Nottingham (West Bridgford) and Stamford, you should be able to access this new innovation in therapy locally.

If you are suffering with any of the issues discussed in this article and would like to seek professional help then you may find our Problems Pages helpful.

Dr Emma Gray

Dr Emma Gray

I am often the first person with whom my patients share significant and intimate thoughts and memories; I never take that privileged position for granted nor the opportunity to help someone to feel better about themselves and discover a more fulfilling life. One of my colleagues once described me as a natural psychologist; I guess she was alluding to the fact that I feel at ease being a therapist, I can empathise with people’s distress and discomfort but don’t feel overwhelmed by it, I can understand their problem and know how to help, it has always just felt like what I should be doing.

Read more about my approach to counselling here...

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