The Health Benefits of Meditation for Men

You can snag loads of health benefits just by sitting quietly

Man meditating in yard
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Meditation isn’t just for monks anymore.

Men all over the world have discovered that meditation offers real, practical health benefits: stuff like lower blood pressure, reduced stress, better sleep, and a stronger immune system.

But let’s be honest: lots of guys still cringe when they hear the word ‘meditation.’ It tends to conjure up images of chanting hippies or mountain retreats.

Luckily that’s just a stereotype.

Truth is, anyone can meditate. It takes very little time (yes, even you can make time), it won’t cost you a cent, and the results are real.

Here’s why you should meditate, and how you can do it in just five minutes. You won’t even have to go barefoot or give up all your worldly possessions.

Why Men Should Meditate

Meditation offers a host of health benefits. Regular meditation has been shown to:

As if that weren’t enough, meditation can actually change how your brain works, leading to things like:

  • neurogenesis (growth of new neural connections and brain cells)

  • emotional regulation (in other words, your ability to manage your feelings)

  • better memory and recall, and

  • development of the brain’s gray matter (even after only a few weeks)

    Meditation By Any Other Name

    Based on all of this, you’d think men everywhere would be lining up to try meditation, yet many guys have never even tried the practice.

    In fact, you might prefer to have your prostate checked (not a bad idea, by the way) or get a tattoo removed rather than sit quietly in whatever the heck meditation is.

    The good news is that meditation is actually quite simple. In fact, you don’t even have to call it meditation. Personally, I call it sitting quietly with my eyes shut.

    How to Sit Quietly: Six Simple Steps

    Meditation can be done a bunch of different ways, but basically it involves sitting quietly, breathing, and trying not to think.

    Step 1: Find a comfortable, quiet, private place where you can sit uninterrupted for five minutes.

    Step 2: Sit or lie down, whatever seems most convenient. The position doesn’t matter, as long as you’re relaxed.

    Step 3: Set a timer for five minutes. Try not to count down the minutes; that’s your timer’s job. Now close your eyes.

    Step 4: Start with a quick 30-second body scan. As you scan down your body from head to toe, think about consciously relaxing each muscle. Let everything sink downward.

    Step 5: Now, focus on your breathing. You don’t need to breathe in any special way. Just observe how the air moves in and out. If you like, you can count 10 breaths, observing each one.

    What does breathing feel like? Does it make any sound?

    Step 6: Practice letting your thoughts drift in and out, like lazy cats. Let them wander in, then shoo them away. You don’t need to hold on to them, or judge, or worry about your thoughts. Just notice that they’re there. Shoo the lazy cat out and go back to observing your breath. Keep practicing until your time is up. Finish with 5 good belly breaths to “bookend” the session. Then open your eyes.

    That’s it. Easy, right?  

    I admit it can be harder than it sounds, especially when you’re first starting out.

    But do it regularly and the benefits can seem truly magical. No enlightenment, crystals, or granola required.

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