A bold claim, but one backed up by science: Meditation increases an individual's IQ and thus makes them smarter. How is that even possible? Let's find out.
How meditating daily makes you objectively smarter
Over the past decade, science has been confirming what ancient civilizations all over the world and throughout time already knew: Meditation is the real-life cheat code to a better, more productive and happier life. Since my meditation coaching finds its roots in scientifically backed evidence and proof of concept, the fact that science has taken a bigger and bigger interest in meditation and its benefits highly excites me.
If you read any of my work it should come as no surprise that meditating on a regular basis is beneficial for you in many different ways, but did you know that, when you sit down to meditate you are actually increasing your own IQ?
23% increase in IQ
Neurofeedback research was conducted on this topic by Siegfried Othmer, former president of the neurofeedback division of the Association for Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback. This research confirmed that the intelligence of the participants who meditated consistently over a lengthy period of time did indeed increase, with some participants showing an increase of a staggering 23%(!)
One of the physiological reasons for this increase in IQ is that meditation slows down brain activity, which increases the brain's ability to process and organize incoming stimuli. This is far from all the scientific data on the subject, however. Many other research indicates the same results; Meditation makes you smarter.
Meditation improves short-and long term memory
During deep meditation, two key memory-associated areas of the brain, the hippocampus and frontal brain lobe, both show significantly increased activity during meditation. (ecoinstitute.org)
A great memory is an obvious advantage in today's world, from studying for a test to learning a language, there is no denying the importance of the ability to remember and structure incoming information. Meditating consistently will greatly improve this area of intelligence.
Meditation improves productivity
Another factor which was affected in the participants was their overall levels of productivity. The long-term meditators ended up being 23% more productive overall. Not only that, but also the quality of their work was objectively better than that of the other group.
Other factors where the meditation group did better were discipline, focus, attention span, energy levels, happiness levels, slower resting heartbeat, more deep sleep and more.
Emotional Intelligence is incredibly important and completely overlooked in our educational system and society in general. The ability to recognize, acknowledge and deal with your emotions is a crucial life skill which is absolutely neccesary for a happy life filled with inner peace and happiness. No matter your outer succes like money, friends, relationships or social status, if you do not develop emotional awareness and Emotional Intelligence, you will never be truly happy and at peace in your life.
Developing and strenghtening Emotional Intelligence
Consistently meditating teaches you to recognize emotions when they come up, but not judge or react to them. Instead, you learn the skill of observing your emotions, rather than reacting to them or ignoring those emotions and thoughts.
When you act out all of your impulses and emotions all the time, it's obvious to see how that is not a great way to go about life. You would not be able to function in society and definitely not be able to perform under pressure, something entrepreneurs experience on a regular basis.
Other people, on the other hand, choose to do the opposite. Instead of impulsively acting out all of their emotions, they bury them deep inside somewhere, hoping that will be that. Unfortunately, that never works. Instead, this often leads to emotional trauma and built-up frustration.
That is why simply observing your emotions is such an amazing skill to learn through meditation. By observing your emotions and not acting them out or judging yourself for having those emotions, you learn to be calm and learn to accept how you feel. You cannot control what happens to you or how your life turns out exactly, but you can control how you react to what happens to you.
In short, meditation is incredibly beneficial to improve your Emotional Intelligence or EQ. You will become a lot better at recognizing your own gross and subtle emotions and dealing with them in a healthy way, as opposed to denying or avoiding them, which is something many people do even when they're not aware of this. Through meditation not only your IQ increases, but most importantly so does your EQ.
So there you have it; Something that intuitively always made sense to me and has now been confirmed by science. If you have not begun a daily meditation habit yet, surely the above research will nudge you to do so, or so I hope. After all, what is a greater trade off than a few minutes out of your day for increased intelligence, attention and productivity?
If you need some more guidance to make sure you are going about this important part of your life correctly without potentially wasting years of your life, why don't you book a quick, free call with me during which I will guide you and set you up for an amazing, consistent meditation habit which will improve your life in ways you could have never imagined.
See you there.
Thomas V is the founder and executive coach of Thomas V coaching and has been meditating practically his whole life, although he only got serious around the age of 16. He is a fully certified meditation coach and practitioner. He is now on a mission to get as many people, mainly busy entrepreneurs, to meditate too, and enjoy the endless benefits it provides for body, mind and soul. By applying a science-based approach to meditation, Thomas can ensure amazing results for his clients, time and time again. If you would also like to enjoy the benefits of a well thought-out, science-based meditation habit, feel free to schedule a free video call here.