The latest wellness trend spreading throughout the U.S has nothing to do with exercise or nutrition. Instead, people are heading to studios to sit with their breath and their thoughts. Yes, meditation is drawing crowds, according to this Washington Post piece. In Washington D.C. alone, three new meditation centers have opened in the last few months.

It’s not a shock that D.C. residents, who writer Megan McDonough describes as “overworked, sleep-deprived, stressed-out Type A personalities,” are looking to meditation as a way to unwind from their hectic day-to-day schedules.

What is surprising, and encouraging, is that some are leaving the office to find mindfulness midday. McDonough tried a 12:30 p.m. lunchtime meditation class that offered a break from the stresses of a typical workday: email, computer, nosy coworkers, the usual. She writes how, under the guidance of the instructor’s “soothing voice and the blissful escape from technology,” her lunch hour became a time to “tune out the noise, unclutter my thoughts and focus on — and connect with — my mind and body.”

Evidence of why mindfulness and meditation are effective ways to unplug goes beyond anecdotes. McDonough points to research showing mindfulness programs can help with everything from stress management, alleviation of symptoms of depression and anxiety to enhanced creativity and concentration. The rewards aren’t limited to mental well-being either; there are also potential physical benefits like better sleep and lower blood pressure.

If you don’t live near a meditation center or studio, the good news is that unlike many wellness trends, this one is incredibly simple to do on your own. Try these three tips to help you meditate anywhere.

Read more on WP.

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