Has the COVID-19 pandemic messed with the way you start your day? Whether you’re rolling out of bed and heading straight to your remote workstation or frantically preparing to start another semester of homeschooling your kids, your morning routine is probably not as organized or balanced as it was a year ago.
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Many people have been struggling throughout the quarantine to get into a good groove, or worse, they’ve been experiencing bouts of stress, anxiety, depression or ‘crisis fatigue.’ There may be a simple solution that can help you regain your focus, boost your mood and help you feel centered again. It only takes a few minutes — and you can do it from your bed.
Meditation guide Rebekah Borucki is determined to prove that we all have time to meditate, even if only for a few minutes. Her book, "You Have 4 Minutes to Change Your Life," focuses on just that: four-minute meditations.
While many people consider meditation to be a tool for relaxation, it can also be a way to help direct focus and welcome energy. Borucki spoke to TODAY for our Morning Routine series, and shared this simple meditation to help get your mornings off to a better start.
Step 1: Affirmation
Instead of lunging for your smartphone the second you wake up, stay in bed and do this instead: Repeat "thank you" three times.
"You would do this first thing in the morning before you do anything else," Borucki said. "What this does is set the tone of gratitude for the day. You're grateful to have a brand-new day in front of you."
Step 2: Breathe
It's (almost) that simple. Focus on your breaths and think "inhale" on your inhale, and "exhale" on your exhale. Focusing on the words helps deter distracting thoughts. Do this for 10 breath cycles. (Tip: You can use your fingers to keep track of the count.)
Then start sending the breath to different parts of your body.
"Inhale and fill up your lungs and imagine the breath going all the way to your fingertips," Borucki said. "You go through all the different parts of the body until the breath reaches down to the toes. It should take about five breath cycles for the breath to circle through the entire body."
Step 3: Intention
The final step is to set your intention for the day. To encourage a great morning, Borucki suggests this one: "I am energized and ready for the day." Repeat that three times.
"This invigorates you and wakes you up to possibility and sets a tone of optimism," she said.
Or, you can always come up with your own intention.
"When you repeat it over and over again, it seals the thought into your subconscious and you can carry it with you for the rest of the day," Borucki said.
And that’s it! The morning meditation should take between three and four minutes, depending on how long your breaths are. The best part? You don't even have to get out of bed.