Mindfulness is very important to unleash the curiosity from the lives and be conscious of what we are and we are doing. It is something that everyone possesses naturally. Mindfulness helps to enjoy the presence of being involved while doing something. Now let’s see how important it is for kids?
Mindfulness happens with the kids sometimes naturally. For example, kids attain mindfulness while watching their favorite movie or while packing things for the family vacation or while doing whatever thing they like most. Mindfulness is important for children of all ages as it improves the output in their work. Even a little time spent on something with mindfulness can yield good results. This article helps you with easier ways to teach mindfulness for the kids.
What is Mindfulness in Kids?
As discussed earlier, mindfulness is something that kids will have while doing something they like. Let us see what exactly the mindfulness is. Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one’s attention to be aware of the occurrence of the present moment. It simply measures the depth the conscious involvement with the particular activity. Initially, the mindfulness is originated from the Buddhist religion and became the secular practice over time. It helps us to realize the purpose of staying with the current experience.
It is quite opposite feature to what we call rushing or multitasking. Being mindfulness with a particular thing is to focus in a relaxed and easy way. Mindfulness takes your time and focus to make the best of you.
Benefits Of Mindfulness For Kids:
Mindfulness will help to keep up the behavioral and emotional well-being of the kids. Most of the schools round the globe are initiating the programs to get the mindfulness activities for kids. Here are some amazing benefits of the mindfulness in kids:
1. Strengthens The Self-Control:
The goal of self-control is to get the focus and the attention on the body and breath to ensure that the gets are aware of what they are doing. It is more common for all human beings to get distracted away from things easily.
Mindfulness is the magical moment that drives the complete ability of the kids for a particular task thereby helping them to have control over their thoughts and emotions. The power of mindfulness helps kids to ignore any distractions that comes their way.
2. Gets To Calm Down In The Stressful Times:
Mindfulness teaches the kids how to remain calm in the stressful times. Kids who get used to this magical mindfulness know what they are and how to utilize their abilities to get the things done. Complete awareness of their own can create confidence even in the face of stress.
3. Lowers The Levels Of Anxiety:
These days, the levels of anxiety in the kids are reaching the peaks being impacted by the situations surrounding them. Under the episodes of anxiety, protective stress responses get activated and they kick out the fight or the flight response in motion. Mindful exercises are effective to deal with the anxiety symptoms in kids. Anxiety in kids sometimes may impact their regular health condition.
4. Cognitive Benefits:
Many researches show that teaching kids mindfulness impact their cognitive skills. It will especially benefit the executive functions performed by the brain. Executive functions especially deal with the person’s ability to pay attention, switch the focus, organize the information, remember the things in detail, and engage in the well structured planning.
5. It Helps To Develop The Life Skills:
These days, mindful activities in schools are moving towards the mindful activities. Mindful activities are used by the world’s famous athletes, musicians and other individuals who are supposed to work under the extreme pressure. These days, students are being put into the stressful environment so mindfulness can help them to keep up their abilities even in the face of the stress.
Some of the areas that kids can improve with the mindfulness are:
● Public speaking
● Friendly peer interaction
● Family bonding
Mindfulness is regarded as the basic life skill that helps kids to achieve success in the many areas of their life.
6. Kids Learn The Empathy:
These days kids are failing to appreciate the art of diversity that is the reason why the parents are choosing the playdates. In long term, this may lead to a lack of empathy, understanding, and accepting the feelings of the others and thereby making them have poor ability while trying to connect with the people who are different from them.
7. Fosters The Positive Mood:
Mindfulness helps the kids enable their positive side to accept the present moment just as it is. It is well known fact that much of the anxiety stems from the avoidance. Feelings of both pleasant and unpleasant are common in the universe for any healthy human being. Mindfulness teaches the kids to accept the emotions and experiences they encounter in the present moment.
8. It Promotes The Patience:
Mindfulness is the commitment of the kids to dedicate their time with the calm mind till they finish any particular task. It can help them to stretch their skills and abilities while being calm. Rushing back or making kids to rush is not always good it will not do good for the emotional well being of the kid.
9. Improves Health And Body Image:
Mindful activities are known to have a positive affect on body image as well. Mindful interventions can give positive vibes to the mind, heart, immune system and many more resulting to develop a good posture.
10. Clear Thinking And Deeper Connection To The Nature:
Kids who implement the mindfulness in their activities are likely to develop clear thinking. Clear thinking comes out from the proper awareness of their self. It also demands the ability and patience to analyze the situation.
Mindful meditation helps kids to foster the connections with the nature that can satisfy the needs of their inner soul.
Ways To Teach Mindfulness For Children:
Here are a few ways to teach the kids the art of mindfulness.
1. Start With Yourself:
The best way of teaching the kids new positive behavior is to make them aware that you are practicing that particular behavior. Practice the mindfulness in front of your kids and this way can be a good initiative to start while planning to teach them mindfulness.
2. Keep It Short And Simple:
Don’t try to teach the kids the official definitions of the mindfulness which seems to be a foreign thing for the kids. Keep the explanation more clear, simple and finally the short. Develop some motivation by explaining to them the benefits of mindfulness. Make them aware of the fact that mindfulness can save their time and relieves their stress.
3. Never Use It As a Disciplinary Tool:
It is more important to keep the purpose of the mindfulness in mind and let your child engage with this practice in the positive situations instead of using it as a disciplinary tool Because, kids don’t like to practice the things that seem disciplinary.
4. Practice Yoga:
Yoga is a great way to increase the awareness and to enhance the strength of connection between the mind and body. Choose some kids friendly yoga poses that help them become more active and healthy. You can find the videos of the kid friendly yoga poses online. Practice the yoga together with your kid and make it a part of the daily routine. This will help you to strengthen the bonding with your kid.
5) Breathing Exercises:
Breathing exercises are something that helps kids to gain control over their emotions by coping well with the stress and anxiety. They can help kids to be aware of the inner rhythms of the body. Ask your child to put their hands on the belly and count the inhales and the exhales aloud initially and they can practice it silently on their own.
Ask the kids to practice the breathing when they are stuck, tired, worried, or confused of something. Breathing exercises will help the kids to make out the best path even in the times of stress and anxiety.
6. Engage With The Food And Smell:
While trying to teach the mindfulness, make them to have the mindful dining with the family. Ensure that they are not watching, thinking, or talking much while eating. Eating accompanied by any other activity is tend to put on more weight. This is a great way to allow the kids savor what they eat.
7. Create a Mindful Bedtime Routine:
Bedtime is the great time to introduce the mindfulness in your kids. Make your kids to practice the meditation before sleeping. Ask them to close the eyes and bring the attention to the toes, feet, and legs etc. it is great way to calm down the body at the end of the day.
8. Mindful Walks:
This is one of the best ways of teaching the mindfulness to kids. Kids have lots of energy and they do not want to stay calm and sit quietly at the same place. It can be one of the simplest things that kids can do. Ask your child to walk silently while paying attention to the sounds what they can hear around them. Walking can also offer your child many health benefits.
9. Get Your Child To Cook With You In The Kitchen:
Get your child to the kitchen while you are cooking and settle them to sit or stand in a safe place. Let them help you while you are in the way of preparing some yummy cookies. Ask your child to help you while gathering the ingredients and mixing the dough. Ask them to feel the taste and texture of the each ingredient while doing this.
10. Blindfolded Taste Test:
This is a simple activity to teach your kids mindfulness. Get your child to be more involved with their taste buds by performing the blindfold taste test.
Blindfold your child and give them their favorite food and ask them to taste and tell the name of the food item that they ate. Tell your child to reveal the name of the food after moving it around in their mouth.
11. Practice Muscle Relaxation Techniques:
Muscle relaxation is all about paying the attention to the muscle groups across the body. Ask your child to lay straight on the floor with their back resting parallel to the floor and tell them to tighten and relax the muscles starting with the feet. Make them to continue the process till they reach the head.
You can find many videos and online tutorials to help your child walk in depth through the techniques.
12. Mindful Breathing:
Ask your child to jump up and down and sit quite after one minute. Ask your child to keep their hands on their chest and observe the breath and the heartbeat. Ask your child to share what else they have observed with their bodies during this time.
13. Checkout Some Mindful Apps:
Headspace is the popular mindful app that can help the kids with the free meditation sessions that can be listened all the time. This app makes the mediatation so simple for the kids. This app can help kids reduce the anxiety and stress by using the principles of focus, mood, and sleep. Soothing sounds, breathing, and visualization exercises are the special features of this app.
14. Pinwheel Breathing:
Providing the kids an object is a great way to foster their connection with the mindful activities. Offer your child a pinwheel and ask them to make it rotate during every exhale. Looking at the number of rotations made by the pinwheel can help your kids to estimate the strength of their breathing.
15. Practice Gratitude:
Gratitude is one of the basic elements of the mindfulness that is good to start with your kids. Ask your child to maintain the gratitude journal. Tell your child to take five minutes of time to note down the things that they are thankful for.
Here are some ideas to guide your children:
● Something useful that someone has done to your child
● A person in their life that they can appreciate for all the time support and guidance
● A potential skill or the ability that they have
● A part of their body that they are more thankful to have
● An item that the kids love most
● Something that made your kids to laugh most
● The thing that have learned from something hard.
16. Sense Countdown:
This is the great way to calm down the busy mind and bring back the attention to the present moment.
Make your child to note down the following:
● Things they can see
● Things they can touch
● Things they can hear
● Things they can smell
● Any one thing that they can smell
17. Snow Globe:
This is one of the best mindful activities for children to teach. Take a snow globe and shake it up and ask the kids to observe the storm. Sit and breathe and ask the kids to watch the disturbances, it settles. Demonstrate the kids that minds will act out the same way under the external force and giving some time to settle down will help to make everything clear.
18. Practice Mindful Reading:
Allow your child to read the newspaper or their favorite books. This can help them to keep their minds at a place for longer times with very minimal distractions. Teach your kids how to get back to the same thing even after the distractions which are inevitable.
19. Get Favorite Crafty Material:
Any activity that can keep your little one engaged can be regarded as the mindful activity. Always get a stock of craft stationary available at your home. They foster the innovation and the creativity. They help kids to develop the fine motor skills.
20. Go On a Safari:
Go outside in the exiting environment and pick up the flowers and small rocks. Enjoy touching different textured leaves and plants. Ask your kids to observe the bugs and birds. Go for a mindful walk and make sure that your kids walk slowly so that they can observe everything in detail.
21. Read The Weather Report:
Ask your child to give you the weather report like how is outside whether it is dark, sunny, raining, or cloudy. Ask them to describe more about the weather outside for which they are required to pay more attention. Keen attention towards the environment is a magical thing to foster the mindfulness of the kids.
22. Embrace Music:
Enhance the mood boosting power of music by allowing the kids to choose their own playlist. Help them to choose a peaceful music that help them focus and lifts their mood. Listening to the music what you love makes your mind to release the more dopamine.
23. Legs Up The Wall:
This is one of the good yoga postures that offer relaxation to the mind and body. It is the easy posture to do with your kids as it does not require flexibility and strength. Drape a pile of blankets for your kids to rest on for comfort and ask them to held their legs against the wall.
24. Offer Hug- To Feel Connected:
Cuddles are the best thing that you can offer you kid. They are like a good nurturing thing for the child. Give your child mindful hug dedicating your entire attention to them. Let your child feel loved, safe, and held.
In conclusion, help the kids to clear up the garden of the negative emotions and foster their positive behavior with some mindful activities. Mindfulness right from the childhood can benefit the children all their way throughout the growing process.