Mindful parenting: a beginner's guide - Part I

 A little quiet time in child's pose at our  Making Mindful Magic  reading event at Books@Stones

A little quiet time in child's pose at our Making Mindful Magic reading event at Books@Stones

Becoming and being a parent is truly awesome. The creation and nurturing of a human life is most definitely a gift but at times it can seem daunting because we all want to be the best parents we can be!

A good place to start is with mindful parenting. Being a mindful parent is multi-layered and this post is the first in a series that looks at some of those layers.

In an earlier blog post, How I came up with the topic of mindfulness, I defined mindfulness in three ways:

“Firstly there is the pure time of meditation when thoughts can dissipate, when real quiet can be found – bliss really! Then there is the mindfulness that relates to being fully present with whatever you are doing at any particular time; not thinking about what happened in the past and not contemplating what might happen in the future. The third prong is about living a mindful life. This means to me that you are consciously making decisions about what you eat, where you buy your food, what products you choose to use in your house and on your body, the list is endless when you really begin to explore the notion of living mindfully.”

If we want our children to be mindful then we might want to examine our own relationship with mindfulness. Children are sponges, absorbing all around them, sampling what is offered and eventually taking what works for them and making it a part of their own lives.

Modern lives are generally busy but if we can make time for mindfulness practices as a family then we are offering our children choices. They can experience the busy and the calm, knowing there can be and needs to be a balance between the two!

Setting aside a time to observe no noise, just sitting is an easy way we as parents can set an example – 5 or 10 minutes a day is almost always possible for everyone. You could establish a ‘Quiet Time” using a bell with a beautiful tone to set the routine rather than you.

Even very young children with time set aside to experience quiet and peace will be in a very different place to children who constantly are exposed to noise, movement and activity.

Our first children's book, Making Mindful Magic, detailing mindful activities for children and adults to share together is available for purchase in our online store here.