InsightTimer: A Free Meditation App for these Trying Times

InsightTimer: A Free Meditation App for these Trying Times

After learning yesterday and feeling really sad about the suicide death of 16-year-old Tik Tok personality star, Siya Kakkar from New Delhi, India, 
it occurred to me that our youth could really benefit from the power of stilling the mind that all can easily access with this free meditation iPhone App called InsightTimer.  

While, in my opinion, everyone should consider meditation,  I'm especially moved to share this with adolescents and young adults, in particular, who may be disproportionately impacted psychologically by the current COVID lockdown as Siya appeared to have been (read: 'I’m stuck in limbo': will the Covid generation of young people face long-term fallout?).  With all the worries, boredom, stress, and perpetual news of impending crises and doom, we must still our minds and nurture positive thoughts and feelings of love, compassion, gratitude, and joy.

A couple of things I've learned over the years that I'm happy to share. First, while all prayer, as we know and understand it, is a form of meditation, not all prayers take us to a sustained brain wave state that mimics sleep.  Hence, even if meditation is "prayerful," these are nevertheless two distinct activities. Second, we need rest as much as we need sleep and since not all sleep is truly restful, meditation helps to get us there.

Finally, if you or someone you love is struggling with suicidal thoughts, the National Suicide Prevention hotline (in the U.S.) is available 24/7 either at 1-800-273-8255 or Please get help and do consider making meditation a regular part of your daily life. InsightTimer makes it easy.

-Angela Valenzuela

Resources In Times Of Coronavirus: Anxiety, Panic, Healthy Routines, Connection & Compassion

Insight Timer is a diverse platform bringing together meditation and mindfulness teachers, psychologists and other mental health experts all over the world. They have been sharing their support in this time of global crisis in different ways and formats. In this post, we are listing articles, guided meditations and courses that can help to cope with anxiety and panic, feel connected to other people, cultivate compassion, shift into a positive mindset and establish a healthy routine in times of social isolation.

Isabelle Pikörn

Chief Editor Insight Timer Blog



In the following, we will list guided meditations specifically created for the current situation, blog articles that focus on relieving anxiety and cultivating a positive outlook and healthy routines, and recommended Insight Timer courses for your wellbeing and happiness (listen to day one of each course for free).

Coronavirus: Resources For Your Mental Health

This article will be updated frequently.

Guided Meditations In Times Of COVID-19

Explore and follow staff picked meditations to get your mind of the pandemic with this playlist “COVID-19: Your Toolkit”.

The following meditations are roughly divided into five topics:

  • specific practices for health workers

  • easing anxiety & cultivating inner calm,

  • cultivating love & connecting with others,

  • immunity & hygiene, and

  • kids meditations.

(Note: Some meditations could be put into two or more categories.)

Specific Meditations For Health & Frontline Workers
For Health Workers: Honoring The Body For Rest by Kaira Jewel Lingo: In this practice made especially for medical professionals, we take time to honor the body so that it may be allowed to rest.

Essential Service: Guided Visualization For Frontline Healthcare Professionals by Dora Kamau: This is a guided visualization practice for nurses and other frontline healthcare professionals.

Pre-Shift Affirmations For Nurses & Healthcare Workers by Katharyn Suzanne: In this guided practice, Katharyn leads you through a series of affirmations to combat anxiety and start your nursing shift with a clear mind.

Grounding Before Work For Health Workers by Kate James: A guided meditation for health workers and carers to help you feel grounded calm before you begin your working day.

Easing Anxiety & Cultivating Inner Calm

Staying Calm In Times Of Chaos by Padma Gordon: I wish to offer you a place to rest, drop into yourself, and encounter peace.

Embracing The Unknown by davidji: If we can become better friends with the concept of uncertainty, we can move through our lives with greater grace and ease, accepting each moment as a magnificent snapshot.

Speak With & Befriend Anxiety by Jordana Reim: You’ll be able to make an action plan with anxiety to allay its negativity and come out feeling peaceful and powerful.

Calm Distress Around Coronavirus by Naomi Goodlet: This practice uses self-compassion, gratitude and guided imagery to help you to soothe any distress that you may be experiencing.

Tools To Overcome Stress From COVID-19 by Rev. Cindy Paulos: A talk and meditation to help you deal with the stress of COVID-19. There are many things available to you that will help to do this.

Coronavirus: Dealing With Fear & Anxiety by Lama Yeshe Rabgye: This guided practice will help you deal with your thoughts of fear, anxiety, and panic by showing you they are just thoughts, so we can learn to let them go.

Re-Centering In Times Of Uncertainty by Alexandra Elle: We cannot always control what is going on outside of us, but we can always come back to our breath.

SOS Self-Soothing For Covid-19 Pandemic by Mary Maddux: In this time of social isolation, learn to be your own best friend.

Forced To Rest by Tony Brady: Can we learn lessons from this stopping when it is the nature of most of us to fill our time with activities?

Compassion Practice For Anxiety by Ethan Nichtern: A guided practice on generating compassion for oneself and others to deal specifically with anxiety during the coronavirus outbreak and other difficult times.

Coronavirus Morning Meditation Music • Boost Positivity, Heal Mind, Body & Soul by Music Of Wisdom: It is easy to be caught up into negativity and stress when you are going through hardship and uncertainty. I hope this healing session for Coronavirus can help you drop some of that anxiety in the morning before starting your day.

Thinking Time: Working On Anxiety & Worry by EQness: During moments of worry and anxiety, one of the best ways to deal with it is to leave it as it is, allowing yourself to work on it later when the mind gets calmer.

Staying Calm – Covid Meditation by Dr Elise Bialylew: Dr. Elise offers a short practice to help reduce the fight-flight activation.

The Sipping Breath Practice To Calm Your Nerves by Shannon Kinney-Düh: You can use it to quiet your mind for meditation, as well as any time you are feeling worried, stressed, disconnected or anxious.

Transforming Anxiety During This Time Of Crisis by Dan Ireland: It is a practise based around connecting with ourselves first and calming our feeling of anxiety, and then opening that space with compassion to help heal as a community.

Belly Breathing During Times Of Uncertainty by Glenda Cedarleaf: During uncertain times, it is especially comforting to settle into the simple yet effective practice of belly breathing.

Meditation With River Flow In Times Of Anxiety by Claire Hayes: This meditation will help you let go of constrictive anxiety through the fluidity and power of river flow for those times you feel stuck and anxious.

Releasing Coronavirus Anxiety by Giovanni Dienstmann: This meditation will help you ease fear and anxiety by working through it in your body via the ROAR Method.

Become Calm & Steady by Linda Hall: This soothing and gentle mindfulness-based practice will help you to feel calm and steady.

Coronavirus De-stressing: Inhale Calm & Exhale Anxiety by Kelly Mackin: This is a guided practice to take you from anxiety to calm during the stressful and uncertain time of the coronavirus.

Breath Of Protection by Hannah Crerar: This practice involves body relaxation, breath awareness and white light visualisation.

Working With Fear & Stress During A Pandemic by Sasha Nelson: This is a guided practice in support of working with fear and worry during the coronavirus pandemic, inspired by Sasha’s personal experience and studies with Tara Brach and Jack Kornfield.

Cultivating Love & Connecting With Others

A Steady Heart by Jack Kornfield: Join Jack in this powerful practice to foster inner steadiness and strength, not just for ourselves but for the global community.

Friendship In The Age Of Isolation by Manoj Dias: This short talk and meditation can help you reframe our experience towards fearlessness and connection.

A Message Of Hope by Sarah Blondin: This practice acts as a reminder that now is a time to show up for one another in a place that says I see you, I feel you, I love you, and I’m here for you.

Guided Meditation For Times Of Pandemic: “Calling On Your Awakened Heart” by Tara Brach: In the midst of difficulty, we need access to our deepest wisdom and love.

Compassion In The Time Of Coronavirus by Jack Kornfield: Let Jack lead you into a powerful meditation that will cultivate compassion and love amidst this time of panic and fear.

Love & Kindness Vs Virus by Burgs & The Art of Meditation: Let’s build as much of a field of positive energy as we can!

Unmatching From Pain & Healing The Planet by David Gandelman: This guided practice is here to help you unmatch from the panic energy on the planet and use your own heart to help heal everyone who is suffering.

Connection In Times Of Social Distancing by April Wagner: During this practice, we can close the distance between us and our loved ones and find the connection we are seeking.

One Heart by Claire Creighton: You will be met by a loving being who will transmit divine love and compassion to you.

Thinking Kindly Of Each Other by The Living Point: It champions the listener to think the best of those around them, stay patient with those that are having a difficult time, and allow that extra ‘beat’ to act in the kindest and softest way.

Corona To Karuna (Compassion) by Arielle Hecht: As we shift our attention from the problem, the disease, from Corona – to the healing energy of Karuna, Compassion – a wave of Peace, a blanket of Love is placed over humanity.

Immunity, Health & Hygiene

Staying Healthy During A Pandemic (Coronavirus) by Saqib Rizvi: During such difficult times, it is important to take precautions and all the necessary measures, however, it is more important to maintain the right mindset.

Guided Imagery To Help You Remember To Wash Your Hands by Traci Stein, PhD, MPH: This guided imagery is set to ocean waves and features suggestions to help you both feel more relaxed and remember to wash your hands.

Strengthening Our Lungs In Response To COVID19 by Laura Garrison-Brook: This flow is focused on boosting the health of our lungs through yoga, meditation, massage, qi gong, and breathwork.

Guided Imagery To Stop Biting Your Nails Or Touching Your Face by Traci Stein, PhD, MPH: This guided imagery is designed to help you break the habit of nailbiting or unconsciously touching your face.

A Meditation For Washing Your Hands by Jordana Reim: Every time you wash your hands, you have an opportunity to rewire your mind: are you washing your hands out of fear or out of love?

Hello Sun – Immunity Boosting Practice by Petra Zikmund: In this guided meditation practice, you can connect with powerful Sun’s energy that can brighten your mood and also deliver protective substances into your body to help you to shield against any pathogens.

Health Vitality And Opportunities For Upgrade by Everything Is Energy: This track came through as an offering to support all of us in staying healthy, vibrant and thriving.

Vitalizing Our Immune System In Response To Coronavirus (With Intro) by Laura Garrison-Brook: This practice will help you boost the strength of your immune system, increase understanding of the mind-body connection, calm your mind, and feel more connected to your loved ones in this time of uncertainty.

Self-Care Amidst The Chaos by Carolyn Anne Budgell: Slow down and listen to what your body is saying – a bold act of care that is so so needed, right now and always.

Envision Greater Health & Healing by Page Heenan: We begin by quieting the body and mind. Then we deepen the breath and envision ourselves experiencing our own intention for greater health and well-being.

Meditation On Healing Bath by Glenda Cedarleaf: You can listen while in the tub or simply use your imagination to immerse into this nurturing practice.

Mindfully Washing Hands by Leah Juenger: A moving meditation practice that encourages mindfully moving through the simple process of washing your hands.

Guided Meditations For Kids

At Home All Day – Active And Calm Kids by The Living Point: This is for kids stuck at home and feeling a little ‘stir crazy.’

Boosting Immunity & Feeling Calm In The Time Of Coronavirus by Laura Garrison-Brook: This is a journey to help your child feel better about navigating through these uncertain times.

The Balloon Ride: Meditation For Children Who Experience Fear & Worry by Dr. Gina Madrigrano: It will help your child settle down if they experience worries or anxiety.

Supportive Blog Posts In Current Times

Insight Timer Courses: Staff Picks

These 10- and 30-day courses on Insight Timer help to establish a mindful, healthy and compassionate daily routine and cope with different difficulties people might face in these challenging times. You can listen to day one of each course by following the link.

Your Anxiety Relief Toolkit by Andrea Wachter

Skillfully Moving Through Challenging Times by Kaira Jewel Lingo

Mindfulness For Caregivers by Larissa Carlson

Traveling The Path To Happiness by Sharon Salzberg

Mindful Mamas: Nourishing Your Body & Mind by Emily Yates

Learn to Mindfully Manage Stress & Anxiety by Glenn Harrold

Psychotherapy Toolkit: Move From Fear To Fearless by Charles Freligh

Heal Through The Power Of Sound & Frequency by Sonic Yogi

Protect Your Body From Daily Stress by Linda Hall

Create A Conscious Morning Ritual by Jason McGrice

Coming Home To Yourself by Sarah Blondin

Pranayama For Restoring Vitality by Larissa Carlson

Building Resilience And Lasting Happiness by Zohar Lavie

How To Navigate Your Breath In Stressful Times by Carolyn Anne Budgell

30 Days: Reducing Stress With Yoga by Lisa Pollard

Restoring Inner Balance In A Fast-Paced World by Zoe Kanat

Using Mantras To Overcome Challenges In Life by PAZ

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