How Long Does It Take For Meditation To Change The Brain?

How Long Does It Take For Meditation To Change The Brain?

When starting meditation, it’s common for many to ask themselves when they’ll start experiencing the benefits of meditation. 

There are so many different meditations, and considering everyone is different, how soon you may see changes in your brain may differ from the time it takes for other people. 

Photo by Hal Gatewood on Unsplash

There are, however, ways to ensure progress with meditation happens quicker, but that shouldn’t be the end goal. 

Meditation is a process, and changes are unlikely to show themselves from one day to another, but not impossible since you could make your mind calmer after an intense meditation session, even if it were your first time. 

Even if meditating every day would make you progress some, even if progress at the beginning is small and unnoticeable. 

Of course, if you do something for a while, and you don’t see any changes, you don’t have any motivation to continue pursuing such things, that’s why it’s important you find what meditation works for you based on who you are. 

Do you like to be guided or do you prefer to go at it on your own? Both meditations will bring change, and there are some meditation practices that are tailored for very specific goals in mind.  

Such as programming your mind, achieving a certain result, or just simply relaxing and improving various areas in your life pertaining to stress, sadness, or any other negative emotion you feel that would otherwise hinder you in your day-to-day life. 

It usually takes anywhere from 3 to 4 months to see changes with meditation, but some are able to notice changes sooner than that. 

For some, meditating for 2 months already lets them see significant improvements in their ability to concentrate, feel more empathic, and energetic throughout the day, as well as boost their cognitive areas

There are even some that only need a few days to see any changes with meditation whatsoever. 

It’s not that uncommon, especially if you do a meditation that speaks more to you. The problem with meditation is that it’s such a broad term, and there are so many different types of meditation practices. 

When people talk about meditation, they often make a reference to mindful meditation, because it really doesn’t take more than being present and mindful of your breathing for an extended period for it to be qualified as meditation. 

Even doing this in short periods can allow you to take a step back and relax, but not nearly as much as if you were to commit to it over longer periods such as an hour or more. Because that also has the potential to influence how long it will take you to see any changes with meditation. 

From a personal experience, 20 minutes a day of undistracted, fully committed meditation over the span of three months will be enough to see improvements in your quality of life. But nothing is written in stone. 

But something I really like about meditation is that it teaches you to be patient, and not as outcome dependent as you would’ve been from the start. There’s a big outcome-determining gap between focusing on the practice, rather than getting it done as soon as possible and expecting changes to materialize. 

Loving The Practice of Meditation

I get it, we all want results quickly, but it doesn’t always work that day. If you start meditating and after a certain time, you don’t see any changes at all in your life, you’re likely to give up. In fact, most that attempt meditation have given up. 

But not everyone is committed to making a change in their life. We’re wired to chase what’s easy and take the path of less resistance. 

When it comes to meditation, it’s no exception. But the more you enjoy the practice of meditation, the more prone you are to the change that comes with it. 

Feeling the peace and tranquility meditation brings is genuinely enjoyable. If you’re not feeling it, you should think twice about the type of meditation you’re doing, as that can play a role. 

You simply won’t enjoy all the meditation practices the same way, but if you enjoy it, the resistance becomes non-existent, and the change from meditation becomes blissful, rather than a chore to meet a certain threshold. 

Sure, it takes discipline to start with, it takes a will to want things to change, but other than that, once you’re doing it, it’s a whole lot easier. 

And it’s a whole lot easier to love the practice once you feel the peace. The peace you feel within meditation is meant to carry on even after you finish the meditation. 

So it’s not gonna be uncommon to sit there meditating, and not wanting the meditation to end. 

But it’s equally important to keep a certain time routine, so it doesn’t become a scenario where you one day meditate for one hour and another day just meditate for twenty minutes. Find something you can stick to, for a prolonged period of time. 

Enjoyment creates discipline. If you’re already disciplined with something else, learning to enjoy the process of meditation will be easier for you. But don’t enter meditation with the expectation that things are gonna change quickly, let it take its time.

How Much Time Should You Give a Meditation Before Sticking With One?

Finding the right meditation can be challenging, and it’s a reason many turn to meditation apps since a clear path is laid out for them and it makes the meditation a whole lot easier. 

But if you’ve found a meditation that you think will resonate with you, give it at the very least two months before deciding whether to continue with that meditation or try another one. 

Anything less than two months has in my experience been too little, to find out whether a certain meditation is working on you or not. 

Fortunately, there are so many meditations to choose from, but with the vast amount of choice, it can be overwhelming to pick the right meditation. 

Picking The Right Meditation

How do you know you’ve picked the right meditation? Now, this part assumes you’ve opted to go for guided meditation, given how all you have to do is follow instructions and it’s a whole lot easier to get things right. 

It may sound like common sense but research different meditation gurus and teachers, do they have a track record for changing many of their students’ lives positively? 

If so, it’s a good rule of thumb that you should give said meditation an opportunity. Now, just because it’s worked for a lot of people doesn’t necessarily mean it will be right for you, but it very well could be. 

You can also choose to do it on your own if you understand the basic principles of mindfulness. Sometimes, the best teacher you can have is yourself, given how much you know yourself. 

On top of that, some people feel like meditation is a personal thing and don’t feel comfortable with guided meditations. 

Nevertheless, even if you’re the one guiding yourself through your own meditation, you’ll want to find something that makes the meditation enjoyable for you, whether it be sitting or lying in a certain position, or adjusting your surroundings. 

Meditation Is Not a Marathon

Many would feel like meditation is not working because they see no changes in their lives. But it’s important to have some continuity, and it generally doesn’t take forever to see positive changes with the practice, sticking with a particular meditation for months is how you actually see anything happen. 

At times, you’ll have to allow yourself to see the change, because meditation is, in a way, breaking free from old paradigms and doing something new for the mind. 

With something new, there’s gonna be some resistance at times, often on a subconscious level. As long as you change, even if they’re small, but you also notice these changes becoming more evident over the span of two to three months, it’s a sign you’re on the right track.