Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Children's Meditation

About 3 years ago my oldest son whom is 7 started a yoga class. I was in the mist of finding a mindfulness routine and meditation practice and stumbled on a yoga poster at the studio after a relaxation yoga class. I had practiced yoga in college after taking an Eastern Philosophy class but after the birth of my first child I neglected my practice. My life was typical of a stay at home mom with two small children aged 2 & 4. I was stressed, tired, and being pulled in both directions. When I went to relaxation yoga I re-grounded (a term I did not quite understand) and unwound the days (years) of tension that had built in my body. If I could gift these skills to my children at a young age maybe they could avoid the anxiety that I suffered from and have tools that I wish I had, as a child. I signed Brody up hoping my rambunctious and energetic son would make it through the first 15 minutes before they asked him to leave. However I underestimated the power we all feel when someone guides us into relaxation and how blissful it makes even the "energetic child". He not only made the first 15 minutes but the entire hour asking when he could go back?! It seemed like a miracle! He continued to go and week after week I could see moments in our daily life where he would take breaths and use the skills he was acquiring. I was so intrigued that it sparked a curiosity for me and path to working with children and mindfulness.   My world open up to teacher's of mindfulness like Jon & Mayla Kabet-Zinn and Thich Nhat Hanh. My life purpose came into focus with mindfulness and the impact it has for children and adults.

If you are an experienced in meditation or someone like me a few years ago, trying it as a beginner I have a link to some wonderful children's mindfulness exercises read by Mayla Kabet-Zinn. You may want to sit with the exercises before sharing with your own children. Practice them a few times and then use Mayla's relaxing voice or use the comfort of your own.

Sitting Still Like a Frog

Mindfulness Exercises for Kids (and Their Parents)

By Eline Snel

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