Parenting children in this fast-paced day and age can make the prospect of introducing mindfulness into daily life seem daunting.
With the advent of technological devices for entertainment, an increase in the availability of after-school activities and the responsibilities of completing schoolwork, your children may be so accustomed to multi-tasking that they are unaware of just how to be fully present in their lives.
Fortunately, there are various ways in which you and your children can practice mindfulness for the purpose of enhancing the overall well-being of your family unit. These eight methods can be implemented and adjusted as your schedules allow, with the end goal of raising your kids to appreciate their existence, treasure each moment and approach situations with acceptance.
1. Discuss Being Grateful
Being grateful for the good things in life is an important guideline for your children to follow if you desire to raise them with mindfulness. Talk with your children about what they are grateful for at present and have them write down their answers, or draw pictures as a supplemental mindfulness exercise.
2. Teach The Importance Of Self-Care
Taking the time to practice good wellness habits can help your children to integrate mindfulness naturally into their lives. Lead by example in demonstrating great care and thoughtfulness in eating wholesome foods, being hygienic, getting the proper amount of rest and exercising your body and mind. By engaging in self-care, children learn to value the gift of their existence.
3. Talk About Being Present
All too often, children growing up in today’s times are so busy balancing school, friendships, extra-curricular activities and family obligations that the concept of taking in and experiencing the current moment is a foreign one. Talk with your kids about focusing on the present and encourage them to spend some quiet time each day observing their place in the environment.
4. Demonstrate And Receive Love
Love is essential in raising mindful children, as this emotion fosters a powerful connection to others and the world. Find ways to show how much you love your children and encourage them to reciprocate. A loving household serves as a fundamental building block for navigating childhood and later adulthood, in a state of contentment and happiness.
5. Instill A Sense Of Confidence
When encouraging your kids toward mindfulness, you will want to do all that you can to raise their confidence and self-esteem level. Viewing yourself in a positive mindset as it relates to the world at large is conducive to exploring personal growth and embracing opportunities. If you find that your children are lacking in confidence, then do your part to build them up.
6. Plan Engaging Family Activities
Experiencing feelings of disconnection is a common issue for parents and children, which makes living a mindful existence challenging. Plan family activities that involve “being” in the present moment and strengthening mental focus while you enjoy one another’s company. Try playing a non-computerized board game with your kids in order to encourage a mindful atmosphere.
7. Practice Staying Calm
Before moving from one household activity to another, make a habit out of taking a moment to stay calm and observe your thoughts. Get your children involved in this practice as well. Not only will life seem less hectic, everyone in your family will gradually learn to stay mindful at several points throughout the day.
8. Accept Your Children For Their Character
Mindful people accept both their own character and the character of others without passing judgment on thoughts, actions or emotions. No matter what your children’s personalities may be, always let them know that you accept them fully as individuals. Also, discuss the importance of approaching others’ character traits with positivity rather than negativity.