Mindfulness is not a new concept across the globe today. In fact, it is deeply rooted in Buddhism and has gained popularity in the West for bringing in peace, calmness, and focus in our daily jet-paced life. Mindfulness refers to being aware of the present moment and stops the mind from oscillating between the past and the future. Many people go about their daily routine however they do not know what is happening around them. Just like grown-ups, kids too get distracted a lot as their attention span is very short. Most of the time, they are not aware of their surroundings and have no clue on how to control their emotions or behaviour. As a parent, you can teach mindfulness to kids by stepping in to help them with the practice of mindfulness and today’s post will guide you how?
Before learning the techniques of mindfulness for kids, let us know more about its benefits. Research shows the practice of mindfulness benefit the brain and boosts positive behaviour in kids. It makes them more resilient to stress and their focus on the things they do improves. At the same time, they enjoy improved mental health that is the need of the hour today.
How to teach mindfulness to your kids?
Given below are some simple techniques to teach your kids the skills of mindfulness-
1. Walking on thin ice
Tell your kids to imagine they are treading on thin ice and they need to be aware of their body movements and actions. You can make this role-play more interesting by guiding them with your voice, for instance, say “pick up your right leg gently, and place it on the ground softly”. You can use similar phrases to play with your child to teach him/her how to move with awareness.
2. Journal about specific daily activities
Ask your kids to write down a journal of the activities they did at school during the day. In the beginning, they might write down things like, “I finished my Math assignment and then we had recess”. Do not correct them at the start if they write vague sentences. With time, you will find them writing things like “I finished my Math assignment and checked it before submission. I went for recess and enjoyed talking with …” This simple exercise helps your child to pay more attention to the present moment.
3. Smell flowers
An activity of here and now helps kids to become more aware of their present surroundings. For instance, you can take them to the park and ask them to smell the different flowers. Invite them to shut their eyes and smell the flower again to describe its fragrance. Ask them about what they think about the smell? Small activities like this encourages them to stop at the park and smell the flowers often.
4. Count slow breaths
Deep breathing has wonderful effects on the mind and helps clear cluttered thoughts. It relaxes the whole body and heals it in a unique way. Why not pass over the miraculous benefits of deep breathing to your child. Ask them to count their breaths and tell them to keep them slow and deep. Start with five breaths and gradually go up to 20. This is an amazing mindfulness technique to help you child clear their mind from cluttered thoughts and boost focus.
These are some ways to boost mindfulness in your child. Practice these tasks daily and watch your child becoming calm and focused with time. The best part of these techniques is that they do not take much time however, with regular practice, they do wonders to your child’s future!