By Xanthe Hunt
Meditation has benefits for both body and mind: it fights inflammation, disease, and wards of stress and ageing. So it’s no surprise that some of Hollywood’s greatest have hopped on the Zen train in the hopes of youth, happiness and health.
Here are our top celebs who meditates and what they say the practice has done for them:
The singer, who famously overcame breast cancer several years ago, has stated that meditation helped her recover and move past her breast cancer diagnosis.
The “Firework” singer told Marie Claire magazine that she starts every day with Transcendental Meditation. “It puts me in the best mood,” she said. “I wake up and just prop myself up in bed for 20 minutes. It’s the only time my mind gets absolute rest.”
Madge famously practices Transcendental Meditation, too. Alongside her religious beliefs, Kabballah, Madonna uses mediation to achieve spiritual peace (and yoga to maintain her incredible frame).
The actress told Shape Magazine that she does meditative yoga for 10 minutes every morning. She touts meditation as the source of peace which helps her to get over life’s little irritations. “When you have a problem – whether it’s road rage, your guy, or work – meditation allows everything to unfold the way it’s supposed to,” she explained.
In an interview with InStyle Magazine, Ms Kidman said that she likes to meditate, particularly, she believes in Transcendental Meditation. “I took it up in my early 20s and I learned the benefits. I try to do it every day,” she said in the interview. For Nicole, a typical session of meditation is half an hour long. She also believes in making the most of technology to further her path to bliss, and uses a meditation app on her phone that has a timer and shows her all the people that have logged in that are meditating at that very moment, all over the world.
The Latino stunner is reportedly very keen on Transcendental Meditation, and credits the practice with giving her a sense of balance in life. “This is going to sound cliché,” she said in an interview, “but mediation gives me serenity and kind of a calm state of mind.”
Obviously the health-nut star and author of the lifestyle blog, Goop, meditates. Gwyneth Paltrow started practicing meditation in 2010. In a 2010 post on her blog, Goop, she said, “My New Year’s resolution is to learn how to meditate. It’s always sounded like something I should do, but I don’t know how to. My friends who do it say it’s really freakin’ brilliant. They say you can’t know the peace/awareness/contentment until you do it. My brain drives me mental. I am going to start.” The blog is now choc-full of posts boasting the benefits of the practice for body and mind. In 2013 she learnt Transcendental Meditation practice and sold a large part of her wardrobe to support the David Lynch foundation so that TM could be further promoted in education.
Ms Winfrey is all about sharing, and so – not only does the talk show host meditate herself, but has encouraged her whole production team to do so too. She told Dr. Oz that encouraging everyone at her office to meditate has benefited her company immensely. “People are sleeping better. People have better relationships. People interact with other people better. It’s been fantastic,” she said. Sharing about her first experience with Transcendental Meditation she said: ” It was a powerfully energizing yet calming experience. I didn’t want it to end. When it did, I walked away feeling fuller than when I started. Full of hope, a sense of contentment, and deep joy. Knowing for sure that even in the daily craziness that bombards us from every direction, there is still—the constancy of stillness. Only from that space can you create your best work and your best life.
So now I give myself a healthy dose of quiet time…Twenty minutes in the morning, twenty minutes in the evening. TM teachers have taught everyone in my company to meditate. The results have been awesome. Better sleep. Improved relationships with spouses, children, co-workers. Some people who suffered from migraines, don’t anymore. Greater productivity and creativity all around…
The rom com actress has also reportedly taken to transcendental meditation. In an interview in 2013, Graham described the feeling of transcendental meditation, saying that it feels like “Sitting there doing nothing on a day off, and thinking, ‘This feels so good to do nothing”.
Watts credits meditation with helping her to stay sane Hollywood. She told Health magazine that “meditating and being with nature in the countryside” keep her calm and steady.
The queen of comedy and talk show host told the Today Show that she practices transcendental meditation. Always the one for a good metaphor, Ellen describes meditation as “Kind of like when you have to shut your computer down, just sometimes when it goes crazy, you just shut it down and when you turn it on, it’s okay again”.
The model and actress has stated that meditation is her number one way of centring herself in tough times. “Meditation is an incredible way of centring myself, of calming myself, and really getting perspective on where I am. The best thing about Transcendental Meditation is that it’s such a personal thing,” she explained in a 2013 interview.
“I incorporate meditation before or after I work out”, Abdul told Star Magazine. She says that, for her, meditation is not about transcendental practices, it is simply a matter of sitting quietly with her eyes closed and listening to the beat of her heart.
Finally, the Girls creator and actress has said that meditating has made it possible for her to face challenges in her life and weather storms and negative publicity. “It gathers me up for the day and makes me feel organized and happy and capable of facing the challenges of the world, both internal and external,” she said. She practices transcendental meditation.
According to Deepak Chopra “For thousands of years people have used meditation to move beyond the mind’s stress-inducing thoughts and emotional upsets into the peace and clarity of present moment awareness. The variety of meditation techniques, traditions, and technologies is nearly infinite, but the essence of meditation is singular: the cultivation of mindful awareness and expanded consciousness.”
The Benefits of Meditation
The Chopra Foundation cites the following benefits of meditation:
• Relief from stress and anxiety (meditation mitigates the effects of the “fight-or-flight” response, decreasing the production of stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline)
• Decreased blood pressure and hypertension
• Lower cholesterol levels
• More efficient oxygen use by the body
• Increased production of the anti-aging hormone DHEA
• Restful sleep
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