In this article, we will look at the term “Mindfulness for children”. We will look deeper what are its pros and how you can use it for your children. We will also look at some great tips from Renee – the Simply Snapping Mom. Read till the end and learn who is she and what is the Mindfulness Kit!
Main points we will cover:
- What is Mindfulness for children?
- Let the children be children
- Who is Simply Snapping Mom?
- Mindfulness Activities For Raising Kids with a Growth Mindset
- How to be a Mindful parent?
- How to create mindful moments for kids
"Mindfulness for children" is a term that describes the state of being focused in the present moment. And even though it is often connected to meditation, we will not look at it that way. We also might look at it as a trend. That is why we will also focus on something that is not a trend but more like a requirement and recommendation - parenting mindfulness.
The first thing we have to do is ask: Why children need mindfulness?
The problem arises out of two main things:
- The children lack emotional intelligence
- Children tend to copy the parents` behavior more than the parents themselves want.
The children are the real teachers when you want to understand how to be present. Why trying to teach children how to cope with stress like adults when they have their ways to do that? Do you think that children had “stress” 100 years ago? It is totally normal to see stress in children who are forced to act like adults. Playing hide and seek, “fighting” on the grass and running after butterflies do not create stress…
Children are those who successfully focus on small things. Children are the ones who see the tiny flowers and know how to do “nothing”. On the other hand, parents have difficulties with being present and, in many situations, are not next to the children when their kids need them. We understand that work is essential and a thousand tasks are waiting for you, but your children`s destiny is in your hands.
If you are trying to teach children to Mindfulness because there is a genuine reason, you have to use appropriate tools for their age and mind. Such tools you can get from the Simply Snapping Mom.
Renee, “30-something, working mother of 3”, is a woman with a doctorate in pharmacy, professional researcher, parenting and photography blogger. She is the Simply Snapping Mom, and she has some great ideas that we will explore now.
If you check her blog, you can learn a lot about Mindfulness, Goals and Anger-management. And do you know what is the most important? She is a mother of 3 great kids, she has the experience and she is “giving it away” for free on her blog - https://goldenslumbersphotos.com/.
“Mindfulness Activities For Raising Kids with a Growth Mindset” is one of Renee`s excellent articles. In this blog post, she talks about Mindfulness for children. She also talks about how she defines Mindfulness, and by reading it, you can get wonderful ideas on teaching kids to be mindful.
On top of that, she gives away for Free her unique Imagination Mindfulness Cards that you can print and use with your loved one or teach him/her how to use them when needed. Check the article, download them and print them today!
In the beginning, we said that the problem with children`s stress comes from two reasons. The first one is lack of emotional intelligence, which is self-explanatory, while the second might be confusing.
If you are interested in this topic, you can check our articles about Which parenting style is most encouraged in modern America? and What is Gentle Parenting?
Mindful parents are proactive parents. Mindful parents can “see in the future”. What do they see there? Tendencies that are about to become problems in the future and behavior that might cause harm and suffering.
You might ask, aren`t all parents good people who want the best for their children? And most probably you are right, but it is going to be the same if you ask 100 people if they eat healthy food and after that, you compare their answers with the answer of some professional athlete. Will you see a difference? Most probably yes.
If there is a good description of parenting, this is it: a job that is 24/7, and you do not get paid for. If there was an ad like this in the newspaper, probably nobody would apply for it.
What is the problem with “Mindful parenting”? It requires a lot of energy, focus and time from the parents. You have to be focused on your child, you have to see its needs, and you have to be the one that gives challenges to the child. Keep in mind that this does not mean that you have to say “Yes” to every whim.
The real reason children have stress is that they copy the parents' lifestyle or follow the direction of the parents, and there you cannot see the words “play" or "game”.
This article is not meant to be judgmental of anyone. It has to make you think about those questions and ideas and investigate your case, family and relationship with your children.
On the top of that, mindful parenting can be extremely beneficial for parents who have children with ADHD. If this is a new term for you, then you can check what is ADHD at the blog of Ella`s Blended Family. Taking care of four children is not an easy task. You can learn a lot from Ella and her experience with blended families!
The mindful parent foresees the storm and offers activities that will decrease the stress levels. The mindful parent knows who to fight with “children boredom”.
Here are a few tips and ideas on activities you can engage your children in:
- Use Mindfulness tools and let your kid explore its inner world alone or better with your guidance.
- Ask your children to take some time relaxing with a good song while breathing deeply.
- Give some challenging physical activity that will help your child focus on the present, challenge its body and mind.
- Engage your kid in art creation. It will be best if you both do this together.
- If you both do not like art, you can try family cooking.
- One of the biggest problems with emotions originates from the lack of humbleness. The best pill for this (heavily practiced in our family) is prayer. Staying on your knees for 5 mins always changes our minds, and more important – our hearts. However, anger and emotions are connected with the heart, not the brain. Why trying to change the mind, when there is a problem in the heart?
- Sit comfortably with your kid, read a moral story together that will lead to a good conversation and motivate the child to share its true feelings and emotions with you. This helps the children become emotionally intelligent and aware.
You can find more ideas about mindful activities in our blog post about 7 Creative Kids Activities At Home - Survival Mode.
Maybe you have expected deep spiritual tips and secret weapons that will help your child become more self-aware and mindful?
We are sorry if you have been disappointed. We are recommending things that have worked in our own lives and that we find practical and safe. It is one thing to want a mindful child who starts writing thankful notes when feeling angry and completely different to see the child writing thankful notes and telling the things it has written to the parents, grandparents, and friends.
Parents` guidance and example are critical. Why do you expect Mindfulness in the child when you are not showing it in your life? The children copy the parents, much more than expected.
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God bless you and your family!