Recently, I tuned into the Karen Carrington show and a comment was made by one of the guest speakers, who said, “Meditation is the best medication.” After hearing that, I felt the need to elaborate and offer some insight into his statement — so I left a response in the comments section (you can watch my short video response here):
As a registered nurse for over 17 years, I wanted to highlight that medication has its time and place. Mental health problems involve chemical changes in the brain that medication can address. I often offer the analogy of a train that has derailed off its tracks. The train can’t move freely and even with some assistance (i.e. counselling and coaching), it’s a painfully slow process.
For example, when someone is clinically depressed, they may experience intense fatigue, have difficulty focusing, and may have limited concentration or memory. So, expecting one to engage in therapy in that state is unfair.
Medication could allow for the focus, motivation and energy levels required to engage in a mindfulness practice, such as meditation and any form of counselling or coaching. In other words, medication helps the train get back on its tracks while meditation and other self-care practices keep the train moving smoothly.
Here are some reasons I am a big advocate for meditation and other non-medicinal interventions:
- Meditation can be used as a preventative measure
- Meditation enhances your connection with yourself
- You can use it in conjunction with medication. It’s very flexible and it has no contraindications with other modalities of treatment
- You possibly avoid experiencing multiple side effects from taking medication
For these reasons, I feel that meditation and/or other complimentary self-care modalities are the best medicine. It’s a self-administered approach that helps prevent, treat and manage different emotional and mental health situations.
Do what you can, but try and do a little as soon as you can. Your Time is N.O.W.