The term “meditation” refers to a set of techniques that one can use to achieve a heightened state of awareness and improved focus. Because of this, it can be hard to define meditation.
There are many different ways to meditate. Most people think that meditating always involves sitting cross-legged on a cushion with the eyes closed. Some even imagine chanting mixed in. This is one example, but there are many different types of meditation that one can practice, including standing or walking meditations.
For those who are struggling with their mental health, mindfulness meditation is often recommended. Examples of mindfulness meditation include Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy.
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction was originally developed by renowned meditation teacher Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn. His design involves a regular (often weekly) yoga and meditation practice.
During these sessions, individuals work to become more aware of the present moment. Additionally, the goal of this is to help them reduce their nervous system arousal and emotional reactivity, which in turn allows for a greater sense of calm, even during stressful situations.
Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy, on the other hand, combines Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (or CBT) with meditation and other mindfulness practices.