Gabrielle Bernstein Loves a Routine

On a typical morning, the self-help author Gabrielle Bernstein, 39, is up by 7 a.m. with her 9-month-old son, Oliver. Her husband Zach Rocklin, 42, an artist and the chief operating officer of his wife’s company, is in charge of feeding him. That’s when Ms. Bernstein heads upstairs to her “meditation loft” (also known as an office) in their two-bedroom, one-bathroom apartment in Alphabet City to do the first of two 20-minute meditations.

“Without my self-care practices I’m a mess. I have anxiety. I feel disconnected,” she said. “Being a spiritual self-help author doesn’t mean you have it all together.”

Routine is integral to Ms. Bernstein’s self-care, which includes weekly acupuncture, a lymphatic drainage massage, emotional freedom technique mediation and E.M.D.R. therapy (she says it “helps treat traumatic memories”). She is also currently on a cleanse: no dairy, sugar, coffee, fungi, gluten or carbs that are not simple grains.

Ms. Bernstein’s apartment is wellness-proofed. On the dining room table, a bowl holds several boxes of loose crayons, should someone want to write down an intention. The room includes photos of Oprah, crystals and a sleeper couch used solely for meditation.

Her routine also manifests through the musical mantras she listens to on her iPhone, the visualization work and the bedtime rituals: prayers, positive affirmations, deep breathing and a gratitude list. She physically, emotionally and mentally disconnects from her electronic devices — her phone remains in another room, tucked into its own small bed complete with a silk pillow and sheets. It was designed and given to her by Arianna Huffington, a personal friend.

“I’ve adapted a very strict sleep policy and take it seriously,” she said. “And I’ve learned that anything I put before my spiritual practice I will lose.”

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On Tuesday, Ms. Bernstein will release her seventh book, “Super Attractor: Methods for Manifesting a Life Beyond Your Wildest Dreams.” It’s been 10 years since her first book was released, and Ms. Bernstein, a devotee of Marianne Williamson (who wrote the forward to her second book) and Wayne Dyer, still wants to give others the same transformation they had given her.

“Super Attractor” is different from her previous best-selling books, most of which are about spirituality, self-help practices and how to take inspired action now. Instead, it offers a positive, upbeat tone — more metaphysical than self-help — teaching the reader to attract what they desire.

In 2005, Ms. Bernstein, a night life publicist and an owner of Sparkplug Communications, was sitting on the floor of her West Village apartment one morning still altered by the drugs and alcohol she had consumed the previous evening. It’s a moment she calls her “rock bottom.”

“I hadn’t been to sleep yet and I was staring at the stack of self-help books I had, trying to find a solution,” she said. “I was going nowhere. I needed a miracle. That day I called a friend who I knew was sober and went to a meeting. I’ve been sober since.”

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CreditHeather Sten for The New York Times

Six months later she was giving talks — not on sobriety, but on spirituality. She was speaking about the self-help methods she had incorporated into her life, her personal transformation.

Without formal training, Ms. Bernstein rented space at the Soho House and filled the room with 40 people. She began booking her own speaking engagements. People came. They stayed and listened. It spun from there.

“I’m not claiming to be a psychiatrist or someone who helps you get off your medication,” she said. “I’m helping people establish what a spiritual relationship means to them.”

Since she first started writing self-help books, the wellness industry has changed. At the time, Ms. Bernstein said she was the youngest voice in room.Self-help wasn’t the big trend it is today,” she said. “It wasn’t something people talked about regularly.”

Today the wellness industry is highly commercialized and commodified. “People are focused on feeling better,” Ms. Bernstein said. “It’s no longer new, it’s relevant. People can now speak unapologetically about their beliefs and people will understand.”

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She believes in the mission of Goop and the messages of other prominent wellness-focused companies, many of which she’s partnered with. For Ms. Bernstein, the word “wellness” is an umbrella term that includes self-care, self-help and spiritual practice. She falls into the spiritual sphere.

“I’m not going to teach you how to make green juice,” she said. “I’m going to teach you how to know what God means to you.”

Ms. Bernstein believes there’s guidance beyond our physical sight: “When we change our thought patterns,” she said, “we change our energy and that’s when things begin to happen.”

That doesn’t mean she lives in perfection. “I can be judgmental. I curse too much. I can be aggressive,” she said.

On a recent day, Ms. Bernstein completed an afternoon meditation in Tompkins Square Park, walked to the health food store, bought a handful of groceries and a green juice, and was stopped on the street by a friendly fan before she returned to her apartment. She has a nanny who takes care of her son while she does her daily routine, which includes working from her “office” at the East Village Soho House, Ludlow House.

Her minimally decorated Manhattan home was originally owned by the musician Iggy Pop, Ms. Bernstein said of the space, which they have rented from his ex-wife, actress Suchi Asano, since 2010. The couple’s main residence is in Litchfield County, which includes a sacred meditation space.

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CreditHeather Sten for The New York Times
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CreditHeather Sten for The New York Times

At 4 p.m., her lymphatic drainage therapist, Adriana Giorgio, who she’s been working with for the last year, arrived and set up the massage table in the living room. Ms. Bernstein changed out of her clothing and slipped under the sheets.

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“Some of my struggles fall into that vast category known as unspoken shame,” she said, referring to her realization, in 2016, that she had been sexually abused as a child. “Real shifts occur when we stop chasing wellness and become brave enough to look deeper.”

According to Ms. Bernstein, Oliver’s birth was pain-free thanks to “hypnobirthing,” a self-hypnosis technique used to release fear and pain during labor.

“The pain didn’t take me down,” she said. She’s been vocal, too, about her difficulty conceiving, which took three years. “I used mantra visualization that you practice while you’re pregnant to prepare for labor and delivery which you do during delivery.”

Two months later depression, anxiety attacks, suicidal thoughts and severe insomnia engulfed her.

“I looked at my son and couldn’t recognize him,” she said. “Of all the bottoms I’ve hit, this was the worst of the bottoms. I was agoraphobic. I couldn’t socialize. I couldn’t be comforted. I was terrified.”

When, for the first time in her life, she missed a speaking engagement from paralyzing anxiety and exhaustion, she phoned a close friend who put her in touch with a leading postpartum psychiatrist. She was diagnosed on the spot with postpartum anxiety and depression and prescribed Zoloft, one of the few antidepressants that’s safe for breastfeeding.

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CreditHeather Sten for The New York Times

“I would have killed myself if I wasn’t on it,” she said. “The medication helped me feel safe enough to go to a deeper place.”

Her next book, which she’s still working on, “A Way Through Every Block,” is a modern take Kundalini yoga sutras teaching them in a current way as they apply to people’s lives today.

An hour later Ms. Bernstein’s treatment was finished. The table was folded up and returned to its original spot, behind her bed. She hugged and thanked Ms. Giorgio, who returned the embrace, and then left.

“I’m close to freedom. If you’re brave enough to do the deeper work, to have an exorcism and have a spiritual foundation that can support you, you can go there,” she said, sounding relaxed from the treatment. “I’m going to live to tell what it feels like to be free of trauma. I’m going to have a book about it.”

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