START A PETITION 25,136,189 members: the world's largest community for good
START A PETITION
x

Teaching Your Family the Power of Mindfulness

Teaching Your Family the Power of Mindfulness

I’m in the middle of teaching an intimate mindfulness class to several girls all between the ages of seven and nine. So far, it has been nothing less than magnificent, and that is always, always the case whether I’m teaching to a small group or a larger classroom.

Why, you ask? Because mindfulness is powerfulness.

(First, quick definition: mindfulness is the practice of learning to pay attention and is steeped in brain science and neurology. It helps children increase their attention span, connection to others, empathy, academic and athletic performance, to name just a few.)

1. With mindfulness exercises, all kids triumph and their abilities only improve with practice. There is no right or wrong (what a concept!). Everything is about observation and feeling. What you see/how you see it is personal, unique, creative and always interesting (for the student and the teacher).

2. Mindfulness isn’t about grades or being perfect. Everyone’s answer has equal merit and differences are cherished. Do you see the freedom there? This allows for expanded thought and exploration. In a typical school setting, in many subjects, there is only one way. Via mindfulness, there are millions, trillions of ways. AND, your answer this week can be totally different the next week. Therefore, it creates an environment that is never dull or boring; it allows for constant evolution and growth.

3. Mindfulness offers something for everyone –-mindful seeing, walking, breathing, hearing, eating, writing, studying, etc. You might have one kid who eloquently describes a feeling and then in the next exercise you see that soft-spoken child performing mindful breathing like nobody’s business. It also works with all learning styles (visual, auditory, kinetic) and with all learning “disabilities” and challenges. And, get this, kids can and will expand this awareness into everything they do including sports (football, softball, gymnastics, swimming), the arts (piano, drawing, acting) and into their social world (friendships, social events).

4. Youngsters and teenagers brilliantly find comfort and connection in being quiet and listening inwardly. My adult students struggle while my younger participants more naturally get the mindful process. Surprised? And, that’s the reason — IT IS natural.

And, consider this, in Western society we are taught to deal with anxiety and stress by being strong, suppressing our emotions or masking our feelings. Mindfulness teaches us a dramatic new scenario –- to open to who we are and what’s going on inside in a clear, healthy way. Learning this as a young person creates an adulthood
of stability and peace — a peace that many of us can’t even imagine. It’s beautiful to contemplate!

Ok, so try this at home. Here are two mindfulness exercises that you and your kids can do together.

1. At bedtime teach your child about their breath. As they are stretched out in their bed, place your hand gently on their stomach and ask them to make it rise and fall. Explain to them that this process supplies their heart, mind and body with oxygen which is vital for their health and nourishment. Breathing also helps get rid of waste and toxins. Talk about what their body feels like when they breathe. Also, ask them to hold their breath and then discuss. What this does: This exercise connects your child to the power and significance of the breath. Most of the time we don’t think about, consider, look at or are aware of this necessary event which happens 15-20 times every, single minute. Learning to work with the breath is also key in managing stress. You are giving them, as well as yourself, body awareness.

2. Before your child’s next sporting event or music lesson, ask them to notice three-five new things. Afterwards, discuss. These items can expand into any area: body awareness (noticing fingers on guitar strings), thoughts (noticing how heavy they breathe when running), other teammates (being aware of feelings of sadness when someone got hurt), coaches/instructors (noticing the color are their eyes/hair). What this does: We mindlessly do activities. And, even if we love something we can get into a “zone.” What is it like when we pay acute attention? We discover that so much more exists. Really listen to what your child tells you, as some of the things they pick up can be quiet amazing. Then, as you listen, be mindful of how well you are tuning into them instead of hearing your own thoughts.

Related
5 Quick Ways to Achieve Mindfulness
Top 10 Benefits of Mindfulness
How to Incorporate Mindfulness into Everyday Activities

Read more: Alternative Therapies, Children, Family, General Health, Guidance, Inspiration, Mental Wellness, Peace, Self-Help, Spirit, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

by Eden Kozlowski, Co-Editor of Meditation on AllThingsHealing.com

have you shared this story yet?

go ahead, give it a little love

Dr. Neala Peake, selected from AllThingsHealing.com

All Things Healing (allthingshealing.com) is an online portal and community dedicated to informing and educating people across the globe about alternative healing of mind, body, spirit and the planet at large. We are committed to bringing together a worldwide community of individuals and organizations who are working to heal themselves, each other, and the world. We offer 39 healing categories, 80 plus editors who are experts in their fields, a forum for each category, and an extensive "Find Practitioners" listing. Our Costa Rica Learning Center and Spiritual Retreat is coming soon. Join us!

63 comments

+ add your own
10:44PM PDT on Aug 26, 2014

Inconceivable points. Sound arguments. Keep going the truly amazing work.cost of labioplasty

5:31AM PDT on Sep 24, 2013

Thank you Dr, Neala Peake, for Sharing this!

6:54AM PDT on Sep 9, 2013

Thank you

10:36AM PDT on Aug 26, 2013

Thanks

4:28AM PDT on Aug 6, 2013

Thanks

2:58PM PDT on Aug 5, 2013

Thank you Dr. Neala Peake, for Sharing this!

8:17AM PDT on Aug 2, 2013

Thanks!

12:23PM PDT on Jul 31, 2013

thanks

1:51AM PDT on Jul 30, 2013

Mind is a mirror.

2:54AM PDT on Jul 13, 2013

And powerful it is!

add your comment



Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

Kangaroos should NOT wear collars. The Kangaroos collar is so ridiculously tight, please take it of…

@charu: I have dry eyes too: have you ever tried rubbing the bridge of your nose with a drop of lave…

Thank you

CONTACT THE EDITORS



Select names from your address book   |   Help
   

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.