Loving Kindness Meditations Change Your Perception of the World Around You – the complete guide

Just as the name implies, this purposeful act of focusing on kindness and love can have amazing changes in self-image and can even increase your positive perception of the world around you.

Loving Kindness can be practiced anywhere, anytime – Photo by Jakob Owens

Best of all, it’s backed by science, with research showing physical changes in the brain.

Benefits gain from loving kindness meditations are tangible, visible, and real, making it a great option for people who want results almost instantly.

Keep reading to find out the answers to questions like “what is loving kindness meditation?”, “what are the benefits of a loving kindness meditation?”,”how do you practice loving kindness meditation?”, and so much more!

What are Loving Kindness Meditations?

Also called purposeful kindness meditations, loving-kindness meditations have the person focus on feelings of compassion. In doing so, they can experience major benefits in the long run, including enhanced mood and improved overall health. 

This is done by focusing on kindness, warmth, and goodwill towards yourself and others.

Doing so for a short time each day can make this type of mentality a habit.

What are the Benefits of Loving Kindness Meditations?

There are many self-reported benefits of loving kindness meditation (LMK). 

These include increased positive emotions, increased empathy towards others, and increased resilience in the face of turmoil.

LKM can also decrease migraines, decrease mental health issues such as depression or anxiety, and decreases chronic pain.

The science behind LKM also checks out.

Research studies have found that participants who practice LKM show an increase in brain gray matter, which is the part of the brain that houses areas of higher thinking. This improves cognitive function overall and problem-solving skills.

Studies also find that the insula and parietal junction of the brain, parts that are linked to emotions and perception, are activated more than in other meditations.

How is Loving Kindness Meditation Different from other Types of Meditation?

Unlike other meditations which require more focus and direction, LKM can be practiced easily with no prior preparation or setup. 

It does not necessarily require you to focus on a particular object. Instead, it asks you to feel the meaning of a phrase you say.

It is accessible to everyone, no matter their age, personality, or personal situation. Effects from this meditation will last as it is a good way to self-regulate, motive, and cultivate a healthy mind.

How to Practice Loving Kindness Meditation

Here is a simple format to follow when attempting an LKM meditation.

1. Make time daily to practice

Make time for this practice in your day-to-day life. 

Sit or lie down in a comfortable position, relaxing the body and preparing for the meditation. 

Take a few deep breaths before beginning the meditation.

2. Practice Loving Kindness Towards Yourself

Find phrases you can focus on. 

Make sure it resonates with you and that you can feel it deeply.

You may choose 3 or more. 

Think of the phrase, and relate deeply to the words you say. 

For example, if your phrase is may I be peaceful, truly think about what peace feels like and what that means to you.

Make sure you contemplate what you feel and how the phrases affect you.

Common phrases for LKM include:

  • May I be happy
  • May I be peaceful
  • May I be safe
  • May I love and appreciate others
  • May I love and forgive
  • May I be joyful

3. Practice Loving Kindness Towards Others

Once you feel comfortable with LKM towards yourself, start to direct LKM sentiments towards others, family, friends, or significant others.

Anyone you want really.

Find one or more phrases you feel you can relate to and feel deeply.

Common phrases for LKM include:

  • May you be happy
  • May you be safe
  • May you achieve all you desire 
  • May you have health
  • May you find joy

4. Finish the Meditation, Reflecting, and Resetting

Once you have finished your meditation, take a few deep breaths to relax and reset your mind. 

Observe and analyze your emotions and how you are feeling physically.

The Takeaway

Loving-kindness meditations are a practical way to build a habit of meditating while improving mood and overall life satisfaction.

They are a way of improving self-esteem and the perception you have towards others as well.

LKM meditations have many science-based meditations, such as improved cognition and many self-reported benefits such as increased mood, decreases mental illness, and increased life satisfaction.

They can be performed by anyone, of any age and experience.

Try out an LKM today and start taking steps towards wellness and wellbeing!

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