Meditation and Mindfulness in the Time of Quarantine

These are stressful times. Jobs are lost, campuses are closed, and home is not the best work environment sometimes. Personally, finishing up my last semester of college from home has been extremely challenging. I find myself feeling anxious and stressed most of the time now that I don’t have a school/work/life balance now that I’ve been trapped in my house all day every day. A few friends mentioned to me that meditating had helped them manage negative emotions during these uncertain times, so I decided to try it out for myself! Here are some tips and resources that I have collected over the past few weeks!

Meditation Apps:

  1. Headspace: This app includes hundreds of guided meditations for anything ranging from stress and anxiety to sleep, productivity, and health! There also short SOS meditations for when you are short on time and need to feel better. I personally love the Everyday Headspace option that includes daily meditations on different topics!
  2. Calm: This is a great app for mindfulness beginners! There are tons of sleep stories, breathing programs, stretching exercises, and relaxing music to choose from. There is also a Daily Calm option which is a 10-minute program to get your day off to a good start or to relax before bed! I love to track my progress with Mindful Minutes and daily streaks. It’s a great way to hold yourself accountable and form better habits!
  3. Insight Timer: This is a meditation app that includes talks and guided meditations by leading experts and teachers from Stanford, Harvard, etc. This app is good for both beginners and those with more experience. I love listening to the music tracks when I need a break from work and ambient sounds to help me fall asleep!

Todd Kent

Books:

The Mind Illuminated by Culadasa, Matthew Immergut, and Jeremy Graves:

This book provides a 10 step program for achieving mindfulness. The teachings help you to overcome mind wandering and dullness, as well as increasing attention span and subduing distractions. As you become more experienced with meditating, you may want to move away from guided meditations, and this book is perfect for that transition!

Tips:

  1. Practice mindful eating! What we invest and the way we ingest it has a big impact on mood and health. It is important to pay attention to your body’s signals. Pay attention to when you are full and when you are hungry. Eating to quickly and without mindfulness leads to eating past full and cause you to feel uncomfortable and unwell. It is also important to understand what is motivating you to eat. Are you eating because you are bored? Are you eating because you are sad? This can help you pay attention to whether you are eating foods that are emotionally comforting or nutritionally healthy! woman eating at a restaurant table Pablo Merchán Montes | Unsplash
  2. Regular and mindful exercise to accompany meditation can provide you with endorphins that you need to be healthy and happy. Focus on how your body moves and feel how your muscles contract and relax. Breathe slowly and steadily with each repetition! silhouette of woman doing yoga pose Kike Vega