Meditation is more accessible than most people think. Sure, meditating for 20 minutes a day has some serious benefits, but in actuality you only need a few minutes to make a big difference. This 4-minute meditation from Rebekah Borucki is living, breathing proof.
“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 just a few, popular, objections to the practice.
During this past Hay House World Summit, I was introduced to Rebekah “Bex” Borucki—a mother of five, popular YouTube host, yoga and fitness instructor, and birth doula. She’s a busy woman, yet a firm believer (and practitioner) of the powers of meditation and how we really can fit it into our fast-paced daily lives.
Bex dispels the myth that it takes a long time to meditate, and explains why even 10 simple breaths can make a difference. Her 4-minute meditation shared below is merely one example of many that she shares in her book, You Have Four Minutes to Change Your Life.
The key thing to remember with each meditation, and any positive practice we engage in for stress-relief and greater happiness, is that it’s okay to move forward even though we have stressful times. One negative moment doesn’t ruin the positive foundation we’re building up.
We’re not racing for some finish line where we have everything figured out. Every moment has its value. When we experience a moment of anxiety, it doesn’t dampen our capacity to get back to joy.
Use the following meditation to relieve pressure and let go of control when anxiety starts to creep into your system. The process involves six questions with only 15 seconds devoted to each answer.
No matter what challenge you’re facing, and no matter where you are or what you’re doing, this is an outline for flipping your biggest fear to a doable next step.
Try This 4-Minute Meditation for Anxious or Overwhelming Moments
Take your time to read each of the six questions that constitute this process. 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, etc?
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 go on eBay or to a consignment shop and sell some items, call a doctor, do more research, or something else?
3. What is out of my control?
I can’t control the weather, the storm that’s coming, how other people think and view the world, what has already been done… I need to let that go because it’s out of my 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 an affirmative 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.
We don’t need an hour (or more) to work through what’s bothering us; one moment of awareness might suffice.
Creating Space around What’s Bothering Us
Meditation, truly, is honoring the space between things. When it comes to an overwhelming moment of anxiety or stress, that’s what we need to bring in: space.
Get specific about what’s bothering you. Once you put your finger on the source of your anxiety or stress, 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 be instant!
Just taking a few seconds to be with your fear can make you feel better—you act different, speak different, and do something different. Honor those moments, because they hold the space for you to come home to your power.
Please share your thoughts on this 4-minute meditation and how it worked for you, any other techniques that help you stay calm in anxious moments, and any inspiring stories of a peaceful, positive shift with me in the comments.
Share this 4-minute meditation with someone who might be inclined to use it.
When you come back to peace, you come back home to yourself.