Exercising Mindful Meditation To Reduce Anxiety

  • Mindful meditation involves focusing on the present moment without judgment.
  • This practice helps manage anxiety by training your attention and reducing racing thoughts.
  • Meditation also lowers stress hormones and activates the relaxation response in the body.
  • Studies show that meditation reduces anxiety levels, with benefits lasting over time.
  • Meditation can be a spiritual practice or simply a tool for managing anxiety.

In today’s fast-paced world, anxiety has become an all too familiar companion to many, creeping into people’s minds with worries about the future and spillovers of the past. According to the World Health Organization, over 300 million people across the globe are affected by anxiety disorders. The numbers paint a clear picture that anxiety is not just a feeling but a widespread health concern. In this post, we’ll explore the art of mindful meditation and how it can be a powerful ally in the battle against anxiety.

What is Mindful Meditation?

Mindful meditation means intentionally focusing on the present moment without judgment. It’s about observing the flow of thoughts without getting caught up in them and bringing your awareness into the here and now. This practice shares its roots with Buddhist meditation. Still, it has been adapted to be accessible to anyone, regardless of their spiritual beliefs.

Attention and attitude are the core disciplines that should be internalized when meditating. Attention is about being fully conscious of what you are experiencing at any given moment. Attitude refers to the non-judgmental, accepting way you approach these experiences, whether thoughts, feelings, or sensations.

While mindful meditation is a broad term that encompasses various practices, one especially effective form for anxiety reduction is breath-focused meditation. This type involves finding a comfortable position, closing your eyes, and bringing your focus to your breath.

How Can Mindful Meditation Help Reduce Anxiety?

Meditation can be a game-changer in the management of anxiety, providing a toolkit for training your brain to focus and calm down.

Managing Racing Thoughts

Managing thoughts is a healthy exercise of focusing on what is in the present. This usually helps to release the mind from overthinking scenarios from the imaginative and usually negative train of thought. This can be done by letting your thoughts flow and consciously inserting a gap to decide whether to proceed with the rabbit hole of anxiety or return to the present moment.

Impact on Stress Hormones and the Nervous System

Beyond mental strategies, mindful meditation also has a physiological effect. Regular practice has been shown to reduce the production of the stress hormone cortisol, leading to a more relaxed state of being. Additionally, it can activate the parasympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for the body’s rest and digestion response.

Research Findings on Meditation and Anxiety

Studies have found that those who practice meditation exhibit lower anxiety levels than those who don’t. Furthermore, these effects can be long-lasting, with individuals who meditate regularly reporting less anxiety in their daily lives.

Connect Meditation to Your Faith

For many, meditation can be a deeply spiritual practice, connecting them with their faith or inviting a sense of transcendence. Different religions and belief systems offer unique meditation approaches that can be enlightening and grounding.


Recognizing the growing interest in mindfulness practices, some leading Christian churches are incorporating meditation techniques into their teachings. These practices complement traditional prayer and reflection, offering tools for managing stress and deepening one’s faith.

A Woman Praying Inside the Church


Buddhist traditions emphasize the cultivation of insight and wisdom through meditation. Practices like Vipassana involve non-reactive observation of thoughts and sensations, often leading to profound realizations about the nature of existence.


Meditation in Islam is called dhikr, the repeated remembrance of God. It can take the form of silent contemplation or vocal recitation and serves as a means of drawing closer to Allah and gaining spiritual nourishment.

Getting Started with Mindful Meditation

If you’re new to meditation, sitting silently and trying to shut off your mind can be daunting. However, with a few simple tips, you can start a practice that will serve you well in times of calm and chaos.

Finding Your Space

Choose a quiet spot where you feel comfortable and free from distractions. This could be a corner of your home, office, or a peaceful outdoor setting.

Setting the Scene

Create an environment conducive to meditation. This might involve lighting a candle, dimming the lights, or playing soft music. The key is to set a tone that signals your mind it’s time to relax and be present.

Woman Lighting a Candle

Timing Your Practice

Begin with short sessions—five to ten minutes—to build your focus gradually. Use a timer so you don’t have to worry about checking the clock.

Focusing Your Attention

Start by bringing your attention to your body and the sensations you feel. Then, shift your focus to your breath, the rise and fall of your chest, or the air passing through your nose. When your mind wanders—because it likely will—gently guide it back to your breath without judging yourself for the distraction.


In conclusion, mindful meditation equips you to manage anxiety by training your focus and fostering inner calm. Regular practice not only reduces stress hormones but also activates the relaxation response. While meditation can be a spiritual practice for some, its anxiety-reducing benefits are available to everyone. Start your journey to inner peace with just a few minutes of mindful meditation each day.

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