Meditation is more accessible than you might think. Sure, meditating for 20 minutes a day has some serious benefits, but you only need a few minutes to make a big difference. This 4-minute meditation is living, breathing proof. If you want to feel lighter, try it.
“In times of stress, the best thing we can do for each other is to listen with our ears and our hearts and to be assured that our questions are just as important as our answers.” – Fred Rogers
“I don’t have time to meditate” or “My brain is too busy for meditation” or “Meditation won’t work for serious issues like mine” are a few popular objections to the practice.
This 4-minute meditation is inspired by Rebekah Borucki, a busy yoga and fitness instructor, mom, and birth doula.
The key thing to remember with meditation is that it’s okay to move forward even though you're stressed out. It's okay to have bad days. One negative, frustrating, or heartbreaking moment doesn’t ruin everything.
Use this meditation to let go of control when anxiety starts creeping in. This is an outline for flipping your biggest fear over to a doable next step.
Try This 4-Minute Meditation for Anxiety, So You Can Feel Light Enough to Move Forward Again
First, read each of the six questions that make up this practice. You can write the questions down (or print this post) and look over each question as you move through the meditation. When you get familiar with the process, take just 15 seconds to answer each question.
1. What’s my biggest fear? What am I afraid of in this moment?
"Am I afraid of losing my job, my house catching on fire, not being able to pay my bills, not being accepted by someone, something else?"
Name the fear that’s in the forefront of your mind — just one. Naming the fear starts to reduce the anxiety around it. Write it down or just say it out loud. It allows you to start unpacking.
2. What aspect of this fear is in my control?
"What can I control? Can I call a friend, my therapist, go to a consignment shop and sell some items, do more research, something else?"
3. What's out of my control?
"I can’t control the weather, the storm that’s coming, how other people think and view the world, what's already happened… I need to let that go because it’s out of my control. It's not mine to control."
This is where most of the fear lies. You’ll have to do some tough-loving on yourself. Stay in the moment, as uncomfortable as it may be. Saying it out loud is a wake-up call.
4. Can I make peace with the worst-case scenario?
This is a “yes” or “no” question. Preferably, say yes. You don’t have to be happy with your answer, but a “yes” means that you can be okay with it.
5. Can I express gratitude for three things in this moment?
Take one minute to think and/or write down three things you’re thankful for. Look around you and take note of what you do enjoy or like about yourself, someone else, your surroundings, or life in general.
6. Can I affirm something positive in relation to my fear?
Turn your fear into a prayer or statement that feels good, something that you want to happen or experience.
For example, if your biggest fear is that you’ll never get out of debt and you’ll always struggle with your finances, turn it into something within your reach: “I am a capable person who’s taking small steps every day that will lead me to freedom from stress about money.”
Acknowledge that you can move forward with tiny steps, and you can change the course of your life by changing your attitude toward the situation.
Creating Space around What’s Bothering You
Meditation is honoring the space between things. The space between thoughts, events, breaths.
Get specific about what’s bothering you. Once you put your finger on the source of your anxiety, you create space around it, and you have freedom to see a new way.
Be still and concentrate on one thing at a time. One question and one answer at a time.
Sometimes, it’s just about saying the thing and getting it out. If you give yourself time (four minutes?) to sit down, or simply stay present in the moment, and bring it out into the open, results can come faster than you thought they would.
Honor that moment of space you give yourself because it's the space where you come home to your power.
. . .
When could you really use this meditation?
Tell me in the comments. I read every single one, and I’d love to know!
P.S. Need a little more help letting go? Get my book Sleep Rituals for 100 at-home practices that are all about you and the present moment. It’s more than a book about sleeping better. It’ll help you feel better so you can live and love better. And that’s… everything.