Concentration, Memory and Meditation Equals Results
Getting good to great results in exams is totally dependent on how strong your memory is which in turn is dependent on how well you are able to concentrate during class time and study periods. Memory and concentration are everything when it comes to getting great results so I hope this article will help you better understand the mechanics of improving your memory and your ability to concentrate through the use of meditation.
I have also included a cheat sheet later in the article that you can download and use as a guide whenever you need it…
Before understanding the importance of developing your memory and concentration to better help you study in order to improve your grades using meditation as the tool of choice you need to have a basic understanding of how your brain functions and the role each different brain wave pattern plays in determining your state of being.
Understanding The Power Of Your Brain
As human beings you have the natural ability to focus your awareness on literally anything and everything you choose. By changing your focus you literally change your mind. It is where you decide to place your attention and on what you decide to place your attention on that determines your state of being at any given time.
According to Dr. Joe Dispenza in his book “Evolve your Brain – The Science of Changing Your Mind”
“What we repeatedly think about and where we focus our attention is what we neurologically become. Neuroscience finally understands that we can mold and shape the neurological framework of the self by the repeated attention we give any one thing.”
“Brain cells are continually remolded and reorganized by our thoughts and experiences.”
You are neurologically wired by what you learn, remember, experience, think and do. Memory is your ability to encode, store, retain and eventually recall information and past experiences in your brain…the sum total of what you remember. A set of encoded neural connections in the brain.
Learning is how you gather knowledge, memory is how you recall the knowledge and information. During the learning process a set of neurons fire together in a particular sequence and a particular pattern so they can be recalled in the exact same manner when required. Hence the need to concentrate and focus when learning anything of value so it can be recalled on demand quickly and swiftly.
Concentration is the ability to channel your attention in harmony with your will. To focus the mind on one thing, one thought, one event, one object, whilst in the same instance rejecting unrelated thoughts, ideas, feelings or sensations. Focused attention on the one thing not a scattered mess attempting to master everything and anything at once.
Your ability to select a tiny amount of information to focus on is dependent on your brain’s frontal lobe. Developing your frontal lobe allows you to place sustained laser focused attention on any one thing. Include internal imagery, visualization into the process, the greater the chance you have to rewire your brain to work for you and not against you.
In other words to achieve better grades or results you need focused study in order to better memorize the information needed during exam time. Meditation is the best tool available to laser target your attention, concentration, and focus on the information you need to remember whilst eliminating unwanted distractions and thoughts that interrupt the neural patterns from firing in the sequence you need to recall required information at the precise moment and under any conditions.
Your brain is a trainable muscle and like all muscles needs daily exercise. Research shows that meditation as the most powerful brain exercise for learning.
”By flexing your cerebral cortex every day in meditation, your ability to absorb & understand new information, adapt to any situation, and personally grow in all directions becomes limitless — no matter your age.” Eoc Institute
Your brain is made of billions of brain cells, called neurons. These neurons communicate with each other through tiny little electrical signals. When millions of neurons are sending such electrical signals, the activity is pretty significant and can actually be detected on sensitive medical equipment, such as an electroencephalograph (EEG) machine.
The brain is light in weight yet it consists of roughly over 1 trillion nerve cells of which 100 billion are neurons all interconnected with each other, via electrical signals and chemical neurotransmitters working together, for a common goal. Your goal is to harness this energy to work for you the best way it can.
Through mastering the art and science of meditation…
Brainwave Patterns That Influence Your State Of Being
This combination of electrical activity is often referred to as a “brainwave pattern” – because of the cyclic, or “wave-like” pattern of the signals.
These patterns have been given different names, depending on their frequencies, and each named group has a state of mind typically associated with those frequencies.
NOTE: “specifically created sounds to influence your brainwaves have been designed” The Brain Evolution System – the “MOST ADVANCED” brainwave meditation program available today.
“Gamma” which is a critical yet mainly supportive frequency. Gamma waves are found to be important for learning, memory and processing and they are used as a binding tool for your senses to process new information. It is believed that Gamma activity acts as a sort of operating system, binding together different areas of the brain. More recently, people have found a strong link between meditation and Gamma waves, a link attributed to the heightened state of being “in the moment” experienced when in a meditative state.
Frequency range: 40 Hz to 100 Hz
High levels: Anxiety, stress
Low levels: Depression, ADHD, learning issues
Optimal range: Information processing, cognition, learning, binding of senses
“Beta” is typically emitted when you are consciously alert, and is your dominant waking frequency. Think concentration, cognition. Beta waves are the high frequency waves most commonly found in awake humans. They are channeled during conscious states such as cognitive reasoning, calculation, reading, speaking or thinking. However, if you experience too much Beta activity, this may lead to stress and anxiety. This leads you feeling overwhelmed and stressed during strenuous periods of work or school. Think of Beta as the “action-getting things done” state of mind.
Frequency range: 12 Hz to 40 Hz
High levels: Anxiety, inability to feel relaxed, high adrenaline levels, stress
Low levels: Depression, poor cognitive ability, lack of attention
Optimal range: Consistent focus, strong memory recall, high problem solving ability
Going deeper, “Alpha” is another brainwave pattern, which usually occurs when you are in a state of physical and mental relaxation, though still aware of the world around us. Alpha waves are the “frequency bridge” between our conscious thinking (Beta) and subconscious (Theta) mind. They are known to help calm you down and promote feelings of deeper relaxation and content. Beta waves play an active role in network coordination and communication and do not occur until three years of age in humans.
Frequency range: 8 Hz to 12 Hz
High levels: Too much daydreaming, over-relaxed state or an inability to focus
Low levels: OCD, anxiety symptoms, higher stress levels
Optimal range: Ideal relaxation
There’s also “Theta” waves known as the “suggestible waves”, because of their prevalence when you are in a trance or hypnotic state. In this state, a brain’s Theta waves are optimal and more susceptible to hypnosis and mind control. Why? Because Theta waves are commonly found when you daydream or are asleep, thus experiencing a more relaxed, open mind state. Theta waves are also linked to us experiencing and feeling deep and raw emotions, therefore too much theta activity may make you prone to bouts of depression. Theta does however have its benefits of helping improve your creativity, well-being and intuition, making you feel more natural. It is also involved in restorative sleep and as long as theta isn’t produced in excess during your waking hours, it is a very helpful brainwave range.
Frequency range: 4 Hz to 8 Hz
High levels: ADHD or hyperactivity, depressive states, impulsive activity or inattentiveness
Low levels: Anxiety symptoms, poor emotional awareness, higher stress levels
Optimal range: Maximum creativity, deep emotional connection with oneself and others, greater intuition, relaxation Think meditation, light sleep, memory. It’s also strongly associated with creative states.
Finally we have, “Delta” waves – associated with deep levels of relaxation and restorative sleep. They are the slowest recorded brain waves in humans and higher levels are more commonly found in young children. During the aging process, lower Delta waves are produced. Research tells us that Delta waves are attributed to many of our unconscious bodily functions such as regulating the cardiovascular and the digestive systems. Healthy levels of Delta waves can contribute to a more restful sleep, allowing you to wake up refreshed, however irregular delta wave activity has been linked to learning difficulties or issues maintaining awareness.
Frequency range: 0 Hz to 4 Hz
High levels: Brain injuries, learning problems, inability to think, severe ADHD
Low levels: Inability to rejuvenate body, inability to revitalize the brain, poor sleep
Optimal range: Healthy immune system, restorative REM sleep
But Why Do Brainwaves Matter?
Brainwaves are important, because they are the “signatures” of what is happening inside the brain. Research has shown that specific brainwave patterns mean that you’re in a particular state.
If an EEG reading shows you’re emitting a 2 Hz signal, it’s most likely you will be in a deep sleep. If you’re at 10Hz, you’re going to feel generally calm, detached, and relaxed.
People with flashes of inspiration are shown to spend their time predominantly in very specific alpha frequencies, while periodically sparking up into gamma. People with high focus levels are typically found in upper beta 15 to 20Hz. People in a good mood are found with high serotonin levels, the release of which can be triggered by the 10Hz frequency.
And there are other patterns to be found.
So, we can figure out what is happening inside our brain when these things happen – when we fall asleep, when we get focused, when we increase our energy, when we’re happy, when we’re being creative.
But why does this matter?
It’s important because your brainwave frequency isn’t merely the result of being in that state. It works both ways. Your brainwave frequency can actually determine your state.
So, if you could change your brainwave patterns, you could actually reproduce a particular state of mind.
This is where meditation plays a role in allowing you to roam in between different brain wave patterns tuning your brain to function at its peak.
So how can you use this information to better focus and concentrate to achieve better results?
Importance Of Meditation For Students
Meditation controls attention and awareness, it helps you to focus and concentrate which in turn helps you to learn better. Remember learning is a process of acquiring knowledge. The right knowledge you need can only be acquired through concentrated learning. Once this knowledge is acquired it needs to be stored in the brain for easy and quick access through your memory process.
The lack of concentration is one of the most frequent complaints amongst students. So to rise above the average you need to harness the power and energy within your brain to attain and retain required knowledge that will help you achieve greater results you seek.
Firstly, you need to learn how to laser focus your attention to one specific thing without letting your mind wander elsewhere.
We all have the ability to concentrate. Concentrated learning has allowed some people to remember a whole book and recite it backwards. Thus, concentration can be defined as the act of igniting that part of the brain which focuses single mindedly on the one object, one specific thing, one task without interruptions and distractions. This allows the brain to build up energy and power to sequentially cement a pattern of neurons to recall required information on demand instantly and accurately.
Learning the art of concentration, perfecting the ability to concentrate and I mean deep, single minded focused attention takes practice. It’s a skill, acquired ability and a energy that requires harnessing, developing and refining to be called upon and used at will. As well as having the ability to shut it off when required to chill out and give the brain time to relax.
Through meditation you learn the skill and ability to harness the power and will of the mind to control the brain waves and develop the patterns you require to work and achieve at your level of desire.
Again, I cannot stress the importance of laser targeting your focus and attention to one central thing…clarity of mind minus the clutter and scatteredness of an unorganized mind or endeavor.
Daily meditation practice will help you train and tweak your mind to perform this single minded laser targeting focus and attention…that’s how important mediation is to your end results.
More concentration requires more brain power which requires more energy. Concentration is a source of spiritual strength and awakening. During the process of concentration the mind is centered on the one thing, there’s no tossing from “this” or “that”. One thought, one idea, one central goal occupies the mind. The whole energy of the mind focused on that one thought. Your senses become still, they cease for that moment to function, because when there’s deep concentration, there is no consciousness of the body and the surrounding environment.
If you choose to meditate spasmodically your level of concentration will reflect this, when your mind begins to wander and you lose focus and attention on your studies, the lecture, the exam itself you will struggle to produce and maintain the energy, the power of your mind will be scattered and without direction.
This is not the ideal situation for attaining the best results, you must have a mind that will obey and carry out your commands at all times sincerely and without question, efficiently and effectively.
A steady and systematic practice of meditation will make the mind very obedient and faithful to your commands. Results are guaranteed and the mind will give little or no resistance, making failure null and void.
You will remember all that you have studied and prepared for…
The meditative state of mind is declared by the Yogis to be the highest state in which the mind exists and when your mind is focused and attentive, studying for exams becomes directed and clear as your mind identifies and consumes itself with the knowledge it absorbs. Allowing it to wire the right firing neural sequence within your brain to recall the information at will when needed.
The results are a more calm, crystal clear and aware you ready for any challenges during exam time.
A Simple Concentration And Memory Meditation Exercise
In 2011, researchers from the University of Wisconsin demonstrated that daily meditation could shift frontal brain activity. Participants were instructed to relax with their eyes closed, focus on their breathing, and acknowledge and release any random thoughts that might arise.
They performed nine 30 minute meditation training sessions over a five week period. When they were tested a second time, their neural activation patterns had experienced a significant leftward shift in frontal asymmetry even when their practice and training averaged only 5 to 16 minutes a day.
This simple concentration meditation can help your endeavors to better focus and to become more attentive helping you develop your memory and concentration towards your study.
Sit or lay in any comfortable position. Place a desirable picture of your choice, anything that will help you focus and remember it. Now take a good look at the picture, focus on every detail. Then when you’re satisfied you have it cemented into your subconscious close your eyes and visualize the picture remembering every finite detail you can.
Visualize the picture in the center of your heart or in the space between your eyebrows…your third eye. Make it as vivid and detailed as you can until the picture starts to fade out of your mental vision. Then open your eyes and study the picture again consuming more details. Then close your eyes and begin to visualize the picture again remembering more details. The different colors of the picture, the texture, the objects in the picture every finite detail that comes to mind, recreate the picture in your mind.
For a beginner to meditation this process will be excruciating pain and frustration trying to hold the image in your mind for any length of time and to remember the finer details of the picture or anything that you want or need to remember for that matter. It requires rewiring your brain to create new patterns, firing off new sequences until you have ingrained them into your brain. It may take some time so please persist the rewards are substantial in increasing your abilities and skills to concentrate and memorize.
At first it will frustrate you, you will want to dismiss the exercise as nonsense but constant practice will develop a new sense of confidence within you.
The most vital aspect of the whole exercise is to bring your concentration and focus, your mind to fixate on a single task or point. To eliminate the noise and distractions from the surrounding environment and direct your attention to a single point, the picture…then to file it away in your brain, to memorize it and recall it at will with precision and clarity.
This is the benefit of your daily meditation laser focused attention and the ability to recall quickly and in precise detail…the results?
Lastly, when you begin your studies or attend class lose any distracting thoughts, train yourself to become focused and attentive from the very start, become laser sharp and alive.