The more that meditation comes under the analytical lens of clinical research, the more astounding are its implications for the health and longevity of our brains, and our capacity as determined interpreneurs!
An introduction to meditation is covered in the workshops we offer at the Interprize Group. What does it have to do with interpreneurship and the art of creating exciting life ambitions? Everything, because the energy you commit to your interprize when truly passionate about its pursuit is all consuming. It leaves you exhilarated but exhausted without some plan for restoration. A healthy diet and daily siestas are excellent for refilling the tank, but meditation is key to calming your mental engine when stuck on a high idle.
Meditation as a practice for relieving stress and lowering the noise level in our minds has been followed for millennia throughout the world. A new wave of fascinating research from Harvard and UCLA is showing that its impact extends deeper and lasts longer than realised. Key findings about daily meditation:
- It thickens parts of the cerebral cortex responsible for decision-making, memory, and attention (facilities that slip with age, as I can unhappily attest) and shrinks the amygdala, the center for fear and anxiety. The Harvard team also showed that a resulting growth in the brain stem from meditation correlated with a greater sense of well-being among the study’s participants.
- It lowers atrophy across large parts of the aging brain, both in the white matter that serves as our communications wiring and gray matter that acts as our cognitive processors and memory chips. Almost the entire brain benefits from meditation – which was a wow finding – not just small sub-regions as previously assumed. And evidence is following the implication that regular meditation can hinder the onset of age-related neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.
At 50 plus we can be even more ambitious and impatient about achieving great things and cementing our legacies than entrepreneurial 20-somethings developing THE NEXT BIG iPhone app or hoverboard. Our sparklers burn just as bright, but not quite as long. This is why the art of interpreneurship, as compared to entrepreneurship, requires a broader, more holistic approach that includes the elements of diet, exercise, and meditation. These balance and rejuvenate, and hopefully keeps us thinking more clearly into our most product years.
To the reader who finds meditation a bit too left-coast or intimidating fear not, it is not defined by a set of how-to rules. Effective meditation can be done alone or in groups; walking, swimming, sitting, or lying down; chanting, breathing, or remaining silent. In other words, you will find what works for you.
There are endless resources on meditation online, just a Google search away. The Miracle of Mindfulness by Thick Nhat Hanh was a good initiation for me. To take a deeper dive into the synapsis, cortexes, and the neuroplasticity-speak of the Harvard and UCLA studies:
UCLA study, click here.
Harvard study, click here.
At the Interprize Group we help you consider, frame, and execute on your Grand Ambitions; to thrive in a truly engaged life. Contact us to learn more.