A Guide to Mindfulness and Meditation for College Students

Student Guide to Going Zen

Modern students are required to overcome a lot of obstacles to achieve their student and life goals. They are exposed to a lot of stress which can endanger their health and success in college if left untreated. Fortunately, students don’t have to fall victim to all those stressors that keep them from doing great in college.

Things can get easier if you learn how to incorporate meditation and mindfulness in college to develop a healthier and more balanced lifestyle. When you feel good about yourself and your mind is at ease, it will be easier to improve your grades. You’ll also have more energy to work on your learning skills, focus, clear-mindedness, and memory.

This guide will introduce you to meditation for college students, how developing a Zen lifestyle can benefit your academic career, and how to include mindfulness in your everyday life.

The importance of mindfulness and meditation for college students

To understand how vital consciousness and meditation are, we must first define both terms.

  • Mindfulness refers to a specific form of meditation in which you focus on your feelings and senses by becoming intensely aware of everything going on around and inside the body. It usually involves guided imagery and various breathing and relaxation methods to soothe your mind and body by relieving everyday stressors.

Mindfulness in college can help reduce the impact of all those distractions and help students cope with all that stress by allowing them to learn how to focus on the things that matter the most. Aside from increasing awareness, it also helps them master their feelings and emotions and deal with their workload more productively.

  • Meditation is one of the most effective ways to practice mindfulness while doing any daily activity. It is all about soothing your mind, calming down, and reaching a state of tranquility.

You can meditate by practising deep breathing, chanting a mantra, or focusing on a certain point in space or your mind. Both mindfulness and meditation are parts of a Zen lifestyle, a unique mind-body practice from Chinese Buddhism.

Top 10 benefits of practising a Zen lifestyle in college

Finding your Zen comes down to focusing on your personal expression, self-awareness, and meditation.

There are many different Zen practices that you can try to improve your college success, including a healthy diet, mindful movement during physical activities, and different types of meditation.

Here are the top 10 benefits of a Zen lifestyle that students can count on.

  1. Anxiety relief and reduced stress
    Attending college means being exposed to constant stress from so many demands every day, and meditation can provide relief from both stress and anxiety.

  2. Improved focus
    The two crucial Zen practices, mindfulness and meditation, can help students clear their minds and concentrate fully on their assignments. Meditation is an excellent way to learn how to isolate yourself from everyday distractions and shift your focus to the task at hand.

  3. Better memory
    Practising Zen is an excellent way to calm the mind so that you can retain more information and improve both short-term and long-term memory.

  4. Better physical and mental health
    Since Zen encompasses mindfulness, physical activity, and a healthy diet, you can expect to see improvements in both your physical and mental health. In addition, mind-body and meditative practices can also help deal with pressure and negative attitude.

  5. Increased efficiency
    Maintaining a physical and mental balance allows a person to do more on a day-to-day basis. Meditation, especially as part of a morning routine, gives people a lot more energy and motivation to get through a stressful day.

  6. Boost of confidence
    When you’re in good shape and great mental health, you tend to feel good about yourself. This increased confidence and self-appreciation makes dealing with everyday tasks so much easier.

  7. Better sleep
    Being able to calm yourself down and channel your emotions when it really matters puts your body and mind in a more relaxed state. When combined with physical activity during the day, it will help you fall asleep quicker and improve the quality of your sleep.

  8. Academic success
    When you know how to unwind, it becomes much easier to focus on your studies, classes, lessons, etc. The more you meditate and get in touch with yourself, the easier it becomes to achieve higher academic performance.

  9. Develop better eating habits
    Zen meditation is a fantastic way to learn about introspection and self-care. With a focus on your mental and physical health comes the need to develop healthier eating habits, which leads to improved health and more energy.

  10. No need for taking any substances
    Many students resort to taking addictive substances to cope with everyday pressure, but that can quickly lead to addiction. A Zen lifestyle can help you avoid all this and learn how to rely on yourself to get more things done.

Tips for incorporating mindfulness in college

Meditation and mindfulness can significantly help you improve your health, develop a healthier lifestyle and eating habits, and improve your overall academic performance. However, the trick to achieving all these goals is to learn how to use mindfulness.

Here are a few great suggestions that should help you find the best way to balance your health and academic duties.

Start practicing meditation

Meditation is one of the best, most effective ways to introduce mindfulness to your daily college routine. Here are several ways to do that:

  • Concentration meditation – eliminate all stressors and distractions and learn how to concentrate.
  • Reflective meditation – focus on one aspect of your college life and reflect on it to train yourself to let go of the distractions around you.
  • Creative meditation – meditation can help you enhance your creativity by boosting your self-awareness and confidence to develop a new and better personality.
  • Mindfulness program – learn how to avoid reacting immediately to things, actions, and thoughts around you and be more mindful of your surroundings and yourself.
  • Transcendental – helps you achieve mental clarity, anxiety, and stress relief.
  • Zen – achieve a balance between your body and mind.
  • Chakra – learn how to deal with physical and mental discomfort and distress by healing your body and mind.
  • Metta – sometimes, saying specific words out loud can help a person learn how to appreciate themselves more, and metta meditations can teach you how to become better at it and more appreciate yourself and others.

You can also consider using these meditation apps to develop meditation practices:

  • Buddhify
  • Calm
  • Headspace
  • Omvana

Practice mindful movement and yoga

A Zen lifestyle may also include other soothing activities like dancing, playing music, martial arts, and yoga. Any activity involving some form of physical movement and mental discipline is great for your health, and yoga encompasses both.

Yoga also helps improve self-awareness, self-confidence, reduce stress, and improve your posture.

There are also fantastic yoga apps you should consider:

  • Daily Yoga
  • Yoga Wake Up
  • Tai Chi Temple
  • Yome
  • Do Yoga With Me

Develop healthy eating habits

A proper diet ensures higher energy levels, stronger immunity, increased strength, and sharper mind, as well as reduced risk of developing serious health and skin conditions.

You can discover great cooking tricks and tips from various food experts and diet gurus on the internet. You can also make healthy eating fun by learning how to cook some delicious dishes.

Developing healthy eating habits also means considering different types of diet:

  • Vegetarian and vegan – vegetarians eat everything but fish, poultry, and meat. On the other hand, vegans don’t eat any food that includes any animal product, including honey and dairy.
  • Mediterranean diet – the typical Italian cuisine, rich in fish, leafy green vegetables, olive oil, nuts, fruit, and some pasta or whole wheat bread.
  • High protein diet – a lot of the same foods you’ll find in both of the diets above (fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds, olive oil) but with an accent on a higher amount of protein from lean cuts of meat, eggs, dairy, and vegetables like lentils.

Tapping into the following clean eating apps can also help you to develop a healthier and more diverse diet:

  • ShopWell
  • Fooducate
  • MyFitnessPal
  • Is It Vegan?
  • Nutrition Facts

Mindfulness resources

Here is a list of top resources you should consider when learning about consciousness:

  1. Calm: Meditation – learn how to manage stress, boost your self-esteem, promote calmness, and more, as well as how to get into meditation.
  2. The Mindfulness App – get insights into the best practices for introducing mindfulness into your daily college life.
  3. Meditation Resources – The Chopra Center – a website that offers access to valuable articles on how to develop a mindful lifestyle and meditate.
  4. Pocket Mindfulness – discover a wide range of mindfulness practices and exercises.
  5. Meditation 101: Techniques, Benefits, and a Beginner’s How-to - Gaiam – get thorough instruction and insights on the best meditation practices, tips, exercises, etc.
  6. Mindfulness - Psychology Today – read articles that deal with top mindfulness practices and find out how to incorporate mindfulness into your daily life.
  7. 5 Meditation Tips for Beginners - Psychology Today – if you’re new to meditation, this resource will help you get into the best meditation techniques for beginners.
  8. Mindful.org – get access to tons of useful and informative articles and videos on top meditation practices and mindful living.
  9. Meditation - WebMD – learn all about meditation and how it can benefit your life, health, etc.
  10. Plum Village - Mindfulness Practice Centre in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh – get the most useful advice on mindfulness resources and exercises from the mouth of the Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh.
  11. Free Mindfulness – a website that provides you with access to many guides to mindfulness and meditation exercises and practices.
  12. Oxford Mindfulness Centre – OMC is a great resource for getting into everything you need to know about both mindfulness and meditation via video, audio, and text guides.
  13. Mindfulness Resources - Calm Blog – an app that shows the best meditation and mindfulness practices that you can either read or listen to.
  14. Mindfulness in Education, Research Highlights – learn everything about mindfulness and its importance in education by accessing the latest studies of mindfulness in education.
  15. When Mindfulness Meets the Classroom – find out more about the latest educational applications of mindfulness programs, their benefits, advantages, disadvantages, and more.

There is no doubt that college students can greatly benefit from introducing healthier habits to their daily lives. However, meditation and mindfulness take time to master. The best advice we can give you is to start slowly by making small changes to your daily routines and immersing yourself in simple mindfulness practices and meditative techniques to make studies easier and more enjoyable.

Think of all this as a long-term investment. The more you invest in your health and wellbeing now, the healthier and smarter you’ll become. Consciousness will help you get better grades and improve your academic performance and do better in life in general.

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