As a man meditates, bright stars emerge from his body in an outpouring of relaxation.

Reduce the Worry of MD with Meditation

Last updated: September 2021

Dealing with a chronic condition that’s incurable can cause a lot of anxiety and stress. Finding a way to manage that stress is not only critical for our emotional well-being but is imperative for our overall health, certainly including macular degeneration.

Stress serves only to complicate matters. That energy could be refocused and used far more productively. While exercise strengthens our bodies, we also need mental exercise to strengthen our minds.

Meditation, especially early in the day, is one of the best mental exercises we can practice to bring peace, harmony, and balance into our lives. When we start the day with meditation, we are more open to what comes and able to manage it with calmness and optimism. Anyone with macular degeneration would welcome the best positive perspective possible - each and every day! Meditation can help.

Think you can meditate? Anyone can meditate!

For years, I dabbled in group meditations, practicing erratically with no consistency. Even though it wasn’t part of my routine, I did enjoy the after-glow and sense of well-being - that feeling of calm - that followed.

For years, I resisted daily meditation on my own until I decided ten years ago to make a serious commitment when we added it to our morning spiritual practice, even if just for five minutes. Now we meditate twenty minutes a day and are always surprised when the time is up. Instead of a chore and something I have to do, I look forward to starting my day with meditation. Rarely do I miss meditating now, often doing it twice a day, but it took time, effort, and commitment to developing my practice.

Meditate or medicate?

Of course, there are other ways to relieve anxiety and stress - in pill form. There is a time and place for pharma to be involved, depending on your particular situation. Only you and your doctor knows what’s best for you. However, even if you are on a prescription for stress, meditation can help.

Many who practice consistently are able to dramatically decrease or get off medication entirely. Meditation can’t hurt anyone and has no side effects, plus it’s FREE! It’s certainly worth a try. All it takes is a little effort and your commitment.

Finding a meditation practice that works for you

There are many forms of meditation. One is bound to meet your needs. The key point is being silent, letting go of the past, and allowing the peace of the present to envelope you as you sit, walk or lay down.

Whatever works best for you is how you should meditate, not according to what works for someone else. In a "Part B" article, I will explain some of the most common meditations. In the meantime, you might try some short, guided meditations. Many online apps allow you free access for a limited time and others have free samples to try. I have a virtual membership that includes a library of guided meditations on the Calm website that I use frequently.

Whatever format you choose, do try to meditate first thing in the morning to set the stage for a peaceful, more relaxing day. Marianne says it best...

“Those who empower themselves most in life are those who meditate in the morning. . . Through meditation, we cultivate our inner strength and release our inner power.“ -Marianne Williamson, “A Year of Miracles”

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This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

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