Transcendental meditation to reduce work stress

Daily practitioners of meditation would take refuge in meditation for almost all problems including physical pain, as it is extremely effective in soothing down the individual in difficult situations. There have been many studies on the effectiveness of various types of meditation on human beings. One such study that was conducted recently proved that practicing transcendental meditation can be beneficial in reducing work stress and boosting emotional intelligence.

The experiment was conducted by the Center for Wellness and Achievement in Education (CWAE) in San Francisco, CA, which is a nonprofit organization which aims at optimizing educational performance, reducing violence, stress, and substance abuse, and improving the psychological wellness of students, faculty, and administrators. The study was conducted in response to the report of a survey conducted by the American Federation of Teachers which showed that 61% of educators were stressed at work and almost 58% believes that their mental health is not good. Subsequently, the CWAE wanted to check if the popular meditation techniques can be an effective solution to the above mentioned problem.

The study was conducted by a team under the leadership of Laurent Valosek, the executive director of the CWAE. The study which demonstrated the benefits of meditation in the workplace included 96 central office staff at the San Francisco Unified School District. The participants practiced transcendental meditation for almost 4 months at the end of which they were reported to have less perceived stress and improved emotional intelligence.

Stress can have significant negative effects on a person’s mental and physical health, as can their level of emotional intelligence, or EQ. Individuals with higher EQ measures are better capable of managing their own emotionsand this also points towards better overall mental health.

Those who practiced transcendental meditation during the study showed improvements in certain characteristics of emotional intelligence which included general mood, stress management, adaptability, intra personal awareness, and reality testing. Moreover, the rate of these variations depended on the practice of transcendental meditation; those who practiced the meditation for more time showed increased positive results.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi introduced the TM technique and TM movement in India in the mid-1950s.

The meditation practice involves the use of a mantra for 15–20 minutes twice per day while sitting with the eyes closed.  It is reported to be one of the most widely practiced,and among the most widely researched, meditation techniques, with hundreds of published research studies.