The Benefits of Mindfulness
Written by Kelly Oriard
Life is constantly pulling us and our thoughts in a thousand different directions. As adults, we often worry about the future or the past, usually without even realizing it. We are constantly analyzing or being swept up in the emotions of the “could have/should have/what if?” When we are focused on the future or the past; feelings of anxiety, depression, separation and loneliness can increase, while our connection to the present fades away. This is why practicing mindfulness can serve to mercifully save us – from ourselves.
What is Mindfulness? Mindfulness is the practice of maintaining a nonjudgmental state of heightened or complete awareness of one’s thoughts, emotions or experiences on a moment-to-moment basis. Mindfulness for kids and caregivers can reduce stress, increase focus, regulate emotions and more.
When we are analyzing how we could have done something better or thinking about our to-do list for tomorrow, it can feel impossible to be in a state of mindfulness. The more we practice, the easier it gets, and it is never too late or too early to start.
Here are a few family affirmations to ask yourself and those that you walk through life with, including your littlest ones to support the practice of mindfulness.
Questions to ask at the breakfast and/or dinner table:
“What does your body feel as you sit in your chair?”
“What scents do you smell?”
“What flavors do you taste?”
“What sound do you hear when you cut your food?”
“What do you see as you look around the room?”
Questions to ask when riding in the car:
“What do you see out the window to your right? To your left?”
“What do you hear?”
“What does it smell like in the car?”
Roll the window down and ask, “what does it smell like outside?” “What does the air feel like on your skin?”
“What does your body feel when the car is moving? When it’s stopped?”
Questions to ask during a bedtime routine:
“What does your toothpaste taste like?”
“What do your pajamas smell like?”
“What does your bed feel like?”
“What sounds do your blankets make when you roll around in them?”
“What was your favorite part of today?”
To learn more about the importance of practicing mindfulness with your little ones, read the full blog on the Slumberkins website.