There’s much debate surrounding the best time of day to meditate. Is it in the morning before the distractions of the day arise? Is it in the middle of the day when you need a break to focus on mindfulness? Or is it at night when you’re preparing for bed and reflecting on the day you just had? However, the truth is that it can be all three—or none of the above. The best time to meditate truly depends on the individual and when they best find awareness during the day.
There are different benefits to meditating at different points of the day. Stick with us as we break down the benefits of meditation in the morning, in the afternoon, and at night.
Benefits of Morning Meditation
The benefits of morning meditation are immense. Besides lowering naturally high levels of cortisol, morning meditation gives you the tools to approach the day with calm and focus. If you have any worries about the tasks ahead, then morning meditation is a great way to appreciate the present moment before taking on the day.
Besides this, morning meditation is excellent for creating a habit of meditation. If you prioritize meditation first thing in the morning, then it’s more likely to become a pattern that you continue day after day. If you put off meditation until later in the day, then you’re more likely to let distractions get in the way of mindfulness.
Benefits of Afternoon Meditation
A midday meditation is a perfect way to destress after a busy morning and approach the remainder of the day with calmness. If things didn’t go your way in the morning, it’s often too easy to let negative thoughts and emotions carry over into the afternoon. A midday meditation is a perfect tactic for hitting the reset button before tackling the remainder of the day.
Especially for those working a 9-5, a midday meditation is also an effective way to combat the all-too-familiar feeling of burnout that many workers experience around 3:00 or 4:00 on a daily basis. Midday meditation can give you the second wind you need to be productive until 5:00.
Benefits of Nighttime Meditation
Meditation before bed has a number of benefits ranging from reducing stress levels at night to allowing us to reflect on the day we’ve just had. Since meditation lowers our heart rates and blood pressure, the practice truly sets us up for a good night of sleep. Additionally, meditation is known to increase melatonin production, which directly leads to better sleep.
As for the non-science benefits, meditation before bed gives you the opportunity to appreciate and reflect on the day you had and fully relax knowing that it’s over. Similar to morning meditating, implementing meditation into your evening self-care routine is a great way to create a habit of the practice.
While these are certainly great options, there are other points in the day where meditation has added benefits—like after exercise or at the moment stress arises. Check out this infographic from Ness to explore these benefits further.