I’ll keep this brief.
I am lousy at meditation and have been long skeptical of it. Sadly, it is often hyped (in the west) by new-agey types and this causes it to get grouped unfairly into the same bucket as stuff like homeopathy.
But it has really impressive power, much of it for your life as a whole (want to age slower?).
But let’s get started with something very, very practical: finals!
Do a bit of mindfulness meditation–20 minutes–as a break from studying for finals and you’ll find that you’ll probably:
1) Be less distracted and procrastinate less
2) Massively improve focus and retention of material
3) Be more creative: useful for anything from making arguments to making art to finding correlations in tough data
4) Sleep better–and how much sleep are you really getting?
5) Improve memory–by a whole lot
6) And reduce anxiety, which is the biggest killer of productivity
Really, truly, give it a shot. You’ve got 20 minutes to invest… and if you’re keen, you’ll see the benefits right away.
LifeHacker has a better article on this, if you’re interested.
For some help getting started, I strongly recommend Jon Kabat-Zinn’s audiobook, “Mindfulness for Beginners.” Grab a box of raisins (seriously) and get to it.