Meditation can enhance social connectedness and positivity toward strangers in a laboratory setting. According to a scientific study, even a few minutes of meditation helped people to increase their feelings of connection and positivity. While social distrust and alienation are growing, this research’s result could be inspirational to practice LKM (Loving-Kindness-Meditation) more because social connection is a fundamental human motive, which improves the individual’s psychological and physical health (15). Another study that LKM was used suggested that practicing it led to positive emotions, such as love, gratitude, joy, hope, pride, amusement, awe, and contentment. These positive emotions have lasted over a span of 9 weeks and 2 weeks after the intervention ended. Positive emotions were also linked with mindful attention, self-acceptance, better physical health, and positivity toward others (16).
Self-compassion refers to being kind and understanding toward oneself rather than being self-critical, isolating, or holding painful emotions. Mindfulness and meditation practices improve one’s self-compassion skills (17). When self-compassion skills are improved, it also leads to other positive psychological variables, such as wisdom, curiosity, happiness, optimism, personal initiative, and so on (18).
Due to practicing meditation, acceptance of self, others, and nature get enhanced; thus one of the outcomes of meditation is self-actualization (19).
- Hutcherson, C. A., Seppala, E. M., & Gross, J. J. (2008). Loving-kindness meditation increases social connectedness. Emotion, 8(5), 720-724.
- Friese, M., Messner, C., & Schaffner, Y. (2012). Mindfulness meditation counteracts self-control depletion. Consciousness and Cognition, 21(2), 1016-1022.
- Shapiro, S. L., Brown, K. W., & Biegel, G. M. (2007). Teaching self-care to caregivers: Effects of mindfulness-based stress reduction on the mental health of therapists in training. Training & Education in Professional Psychology, 1, 105-115.
- Neff, K. D., Kirkpatrick, K. L., & Rude, S. (2007). Self-compassion and adaptive psychological functioning. Journal of Research in Personality, 41, 139-154.
- Alexander, C. N., Rainforth, M. V., & Gelderloos, P. (1991). Transcendental meditation, self-actualization, and psychological health: A conceptual overview and statistical metaanalysis. Journal of Social Behavior and Personality, 6, 189-247.