Study Finds Meditation Increases Recognition Of Mistakes


November 28, 2021 12:43 PM STI

Michigan [US], Nov. 28 (ANI): A recent study from Michigan State University found that if you forget or make a lot of mistakes, meditation is the answer to your problems.
The research has been published in the ‘Brain Sciences Journal’.
Researchers tested how open watch meditation – or meditation that focuses on becoming aware of feelings, thoughts, or sensations as they unfold in the mind and body – alters the brain activity in a way that suggests increased recognition of errors.
“People’s interest in meditation and mindfulness exceeds what science can prove in terms of effects and benefits,” said Jeff Lin, MSU psychology doctoral student and study co-author. .
“But it’s amazing to me that we got to see how a guided meditation session can produce changes in brain activity in non-meditators,” he added.
The results suggest that different forms of meditation may have different neurocognitive effects, and Lin explained that there is little research on the impact of open surveillance meditation on the recognition of errors.
“Some forms of meditation allow you to focus on a single object, usually your breath, but open watch meditation is a little different,” Lin said.
“It allows you to focus on yourself and pay attention to everything that is going on in your mind and body. The point is to sit quietly and pay close attention to where the mind is. moves without being too caught up in the landscape, ”Lin added.
Lin and his MSU co-authors – William Eckerle, Ling Peng, and Jason Moser – recruited more than 200 participants to test how open surveillance meditation affected the way people detected and responded to errors.

The participants, who had never meditated before, were subjected to a 20-minute open-watch meditation exercise while the researchers measured brain activity by electroencephalography or EEG. Then they performed a computerized distraction test.
“EEG can measure brain activity at the millisecond level, so we got precise measurements of neural activity right after errors versus correct responses,” Lin said.
“A certain neural signal occurs about half a second after an error called a positivity error, which is related to the conscious recognition of errors. We have found that the strength of this signal is increased in meditators compared to controls,” Lin added.
Although meditators did not have immediate improvements in actual task performance, the researchers’ findings offer a promising window into the potential of sustained meditation.
“These results are a strong demonstration of what just 20 minutes of meditation can do to improve the brain’s ability to detect and pay attention to errors,” Moser said.
“It makes us more confident in what mindfulness meditation might really be able to do for performance and daily functioning right now,” Moser added.
While meditation and mindfulness have gained widespread interest in recent years, Lin is one of a relatively small group of researchers who take a neuroscientific approach to assess their psychological and performance effects.
Looking ahead, Lin said the next phase of research will be to include a larger group of participants, test different forms of meditation, and determine whether changes in brain activity can translate into behavior changes with a longer term practice.
“It’s great to see the public’s enthusiasm for mindfulness, but there is still a lot of work from a scientific standpoint to be done to understand the benefits it can have and, just as important, how it is. actually works, ”Lin said.
“It’s time we started looking at it from a more rigorous perspective,” Lin added. (ANI)


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