How mindfulness can help you and your child

Anselm ChettiarNews & Events

It is so important for you and your child to practice mindfulness in your daily lives, especially at a time when everything has turned upside down.

What is mindfulness?
Mindfulness means paying full attention to something. It means slowing down to really notice what you’re doing.  Being mindful is the opposite of rushing or multitasking.  

When you’re mindful, you’re taking your time and focusing in a relaxed, easy way.  Practicing mindfulness can improve your focus and increase your learning capacity, among many other things. 

Practicing mindfulness can help you:  

  • Pay attention better
  • Be less distracted
  • Learn more
  • Stay calm under stress
  • Avoid getting too upset about things
  • Slow down instead of rush
  • Listen to others better
  • Get along better
  • Be more patient
  • Feel happier

Try these 2 exercises to help you practice mindfulness:  

Mindful Word 
Choose a word that seems calm or soothing. For example, this could be a word like “peace”, “love”, “snowflake”, “sunlight” or “calm.”

1. Think the word to yourself. Say it silently and slowly in your mind. Say your word to yourself with each breath you take, in and out. Keep your attention gently focused on your word. 
2. When your mind wanders, guide your attention back to your word, and keep saying it gently and slowly while you relax and breathe.  

Can you do this for a whole minute? Can you do it for 5 minutes?  

Mindful Breathing 
With this exercise, you focus your attention on breathing. Pay attention to your breath on purpose, but not forced.  

1. Sit up in a comfortable position and close your eyes. 
2. Notice your breathing as you inhale and exhale normally. Just pay attention to your breath as it goes in and out. Can you feel the place where the air tickles your nostrils?
3. Pay attention to how the breath gently moves your body. Can you notice your tummy or your chest moving as you breathe? 
4. Sit for a few minutes, just paying attention to your gentle breathing. See how relaxed you can feel just sitting, breathing in and out. 
5. When your mind starts to wander and think about something else, gently guide your attention back to your breathing.