Five Sessions Of Guided Meditation Per Semester Makes The Difference

We wanted to share a #MyHealthJourney with you about a director of a university wellness center who instituted a successful drop-in meditation program with the goal of introducing mind-body coping techniques to students to increase their resiliency and help them manage stress.

Dear Belleruth,

I’m Emily Page. I first discovered guided imagery when I was the Director of the Wellness Center at Rice University in Houston. 

I was looking for resources to help our students increase resiliency through positive coping techniques.  Though I knew that “meditation” was generally thought to be an effective way to help manage distress, I was skeptical about how to design and implement a program that our students would find interesting and valuable. 

When I purchased some of your audio CDs and shared them with our students, it was clear to me that guided imagery could be of genuine help for many young adults who are feeling overwhelmed, lonely or lacking confidence. 

Around 2006, we began encouraging students (and faculty and staff) to join us for 20-minute “drop-in” meditation sessions throughout the week. We called it our Nirvana Program.

Over several years, the program grew and we learned from student evaluations that they perceived the greatest benefit on their well-being when they participated in at least 5 sessions over the course of the semester. 

In effect, there was a certain “dosage” needed for the students to report that guided imagery and other meditation techniques helped them cope with distress and perform better academically. 

Emily Page