Mindfulness, according to dictionary.com, can be defined as a “technique in which one focuses one's full attention only on the present, experiencing thoughts, feelings, and sensations but not judging them”.
Now after reading that definition I’m sure you’re probably wondering, what in the world does that mean?! How can you focus on your thoughts, but not judge them?? Who does that?!
The easiest way that I know how to explain mindfulness is by teaching it in a practical way. Let’s try doing a simple, 1-minute breathing exercise. Right now, wherever you are, just breathe in and out deeply, through your nose. There's no need to change your breathing patterns, just focus solely on your breath. If a thought crosses your mind while you’re breathing, acknowledge it, but go back to focusing on your breath. How does it feel when you take a big breath in? How does it feel when you release it? Set a timer, and continue to focus on your breath for one minute. You can continue reading when you're done!
Great! Now how do you feel? I don't know about you but after just one minute of breathing, I can see things little more clearly. I can feel a calmness flooding my body. I feel ready to take on the day!
The best part is that you can take this moment of serenity with you anywhere you go! If you are ever feeling a bit overwhelmed or even just a little sluggish and tired from the day, you can always stop and breathe.
Now that you have a better understanding of what mindfulness is, my hope is that you’ll teach your kids this same exercise to find their own sense of peace, calmness and tranquility. It’s important for kids to be able to go to their “calm place” whenever they need to.
For example, when they feel
Frustrated with having to share toys in school
Unfocused and distracted when doing school work
Hungry and/or irritable
Unhappy or bored when waiting in long lines
These are just a few examples of times when your child can go to their “calm place”.
In this blog series, I am excited to be sharing a monthly mindfulness moment. This is where I will get to provide you with valuable information on mindfulness, while sharing different activities or games that encourage mindfulness for both you and your child.
If you have any topics that you would like to see addressed in the blog, leave suggestions in the comments below! You can also email email@example.com to schedule private yoga sessions in the Miami area! Stay tuned for our next post!