Excerpts from the Book
More than a dozen studies show the TM technique reduces depression. The most recent was a study that showed reduced depression, anxiety, and stress was associated with changes in the actual functioning of the brain so there was more connectivity (coherence) in the brain. The largest study was published in 2009 in the American Journal of Hypertension./18 It was a random control study of 298 university students who were assigned either to learn TM technique or to a wait-list control group. The overall group was studied as well as a subgroup of 159 students who were at risk for hypertension due to, for example, their family history or being overweight. TM resulted in significant reductions as compared to the controls in depression, anxiety, and anger, and significant improvements in coping ability, and the improvements were also correlated with decreases in blood pressure, showing the physical effect of the program.
Gary Kahn (not his real name by request) is a 1995 graduate of the University of Minnesota and an occupational therapist. Jay spoke to Gary in June 2016, about three weeks after he started practicing the TM technique on a regular basis. He had learned the technique in early 2015, but he said he was very sporadic in doing it despite believing it was right for him. Then, however, he developed a serious drug problem and said that after “bottoming out” at the beginning of May 2016, a few weeks later he entered a daily drug treatment program, and he started practicing TM regularly.
I started a daily seven-hour a day out-patient drug treatment program on May 24, 2016. I was coming off a drug and there was a big increase in my depression, and an increase in anxiety. So, my baseline at starting my recent twice daily TM practice, my baseline was very, very low as far as my mood and my depression, an 8 out of a 10 scale.
And after a few days of TM I immediately felt not an initial huge increase in mood, but like a progressive increase in happiness. Does that make sense? And after about four days of it, I’m like ‘wow – what am I feeling?’ It was kind of surprising to me that I felt an increase in mood. I am being medicated at the same time, but I’ve been on medication for a while for depression. But for me after four days of it I was really better.
And my motivation! I just kind of took over my life again. I became more motivated as far as writing goals and actually keeping track of my goals, and more motivated to take care of myself, self-care, and more motivation to exercise.