Transcendental meditation is an effortless meditation technique that can help you reduce anxiety, chronic stress, and burnout.

If you live with a mental health condition, such as stress, burnout, or anxiety, it can be challenging to relax and perform day-to-day tasks.

If you’re looking for a practice that can help alleviate stress and promote more relaxation in your life, you might consider transcendental meditation. Transcendental meditation has been around for years and can alleviate any racing thoughts you may experience.

Understanding how you can integrate this practice into your daily life can improve your quality of life and provide relief that will support you in managing your symptoms.

Transcendental meditation (TM) is a type of meditation you can practice that helps you quiet your mind and relax. It can be done in as little as 20 minutes a day.

You practice transcendental meditation by quietly repeating a mantra in your head. The mantras used in transcendental meditation aren’t phrases, but rather they’re sounds assigned to you by a certified teacher of TM.

According to the Transcendental Meditation Institute, this practice was developed in the 1950s by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and is effective in improving:

It’s different than other forms of meditation because it doesn’t require intense concentration or mindfulness to practice it.

You can find many transcendental meditation resources online and learn about the technique independently. If you want to incorporate this as a practice, the proper technique can only be learned from a certified transcendental meditation teacher.

The cost ranges between $420 to $980 to learn from a certified teacher and depends on household income. You can also find grants and scholarships to cover the cost if you qualify.

What is the difference between TM and regular meditation?

TM differs from other forms of meditation as it doesn’t require much effort. In fact, the Transcendental Meditation Institute, where you can learn TM, states that it’s different because:

  • it doesn’t require concentration and focus
  • it’s effortless
  • it doesn’t require you to monitor your thoughts
  • you don’t have to empty your mind
  • hundreds of published studies have found it to be effective
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Transcendental meditation uses meditation and mantras to help your mind “transcend” to a new level of consciousness to help your mind settle. It’s essential to learn the technique from a certified teacher.

To practice transcendental meditation, many teachers recommend doing it for two 20-minute sessions daily.

Here’s an overview of how the technique works:

  1. Close your eyes and sit comfortably.
  2. Your teacher gives you a mantra and instructs you on how to use it (often a sound with no meaning to you).
  3. You repeat the mantra silently in your head, driving your consciousness toward the mantra.
  4. Your teacher provides any additional instructions on how to use the mantra, if necessary.

Transcendental meditation is a personalized technique, so it’s not a one-size-fits-all approach. When you learn transcendental meditation, your teacher will assign you a mantra that works for you.

There are a multitude of benefits of practicing transcendental meditation. A 2022 study examining TM’s effects on 80 healthcare workers found that 3 months of transcendental meditation decreased psychological distress. Healthcare workers who practiced TM for 20 minutes per day were found to have lower scores of:

  • chronic stress
  • burnout
  • insomnia
  • anxiety

Another 2020 study of 34 participants found that when a meditation group was compared to a control group, the meditation group who practiced transcendental meditation 20 minutes twice daily reported lower anxiety and stress levels.

The researchers also found that this occurs due to increased brain connectivity that can increase interoceptive awareness, or in other words, awareness of what’s happening within your body.

A 2022 case review of 18 studies showed mild effects of TM on reducing blood pressure. These effects were more significant in older adults and less significant in younger adults.

As these studies suggest, transcendental meditation can benefit your overall physical and mental health and well-being.

Transcendental meditation is an effortless method of meditation that differs from other forms of meditation in that it doesn’t involve controlling your thoughts. Its benefits for health and mental health are numerous, and it can be beneficial for reducing chronic stress.

Transcendental meditation can only be taught by a certified teacher. If you’re interested in learning transcendental meditation, you can find a certified teacher near you or learn online at the Maharishi Foundation USA. The foundation also offers a pricing scale based on income and additional information about TM.

The David Lynch Foundation also offers TM training for those who live in New York City. If you think that transcendental meditation might be for you, consider joining a training today.