A couple of weeks ago I spent a mindful afternoon with a group of children and their parents at a local yoga studio sharing my new children’s workshop, Slow Down, Mindfully. The session offers children and families an opportunity to experience a period of time where they can be calm, go slow and basically take a step back from the busy lives so many of us seem to live today. All of us experienced some downtime and enjoyed the energy in the room that reflected our goal.
For the record, I was not a perfect example of mindful mothering. It was a pretty busy household when I was a mother to three small children and it is only now that they are adults that I can view that life as heavy with school and after-school activities. When homework and play dates were thrown into the mix, I wish I’d had the awareness then, to put aside more time for slow, quiet experiences. Having said that I revel in the way they have now established lives for themselves which embrace meditation, time in nature and slow purposeful engagement so perhaps I’m being too hard on myself!
But I digress! What we all enjoyed in that workshop afternoon was an opportunity to experience being slow, being calm, being present and paying attention. There was music and movement, art activities, a guided meditation and opportunities and experiences for grounding and being in the present moment, some from my book, Making Mindful Magic.
I loved that so many parents came and joined in with their children. That is what sharing your own truth with your children is all about. I understand that’s not always possible but it was a great opportunity for those parents to show and share what they value in life. Certainly, kids are never always on board with being quiet and slow and calm but I really believe there are times for even the most boisterous child, when living in the slow lane is a blessed relief and the more often they partake, the more obvious it will be to them that some slow and calm time is an important part of their lives.
I actively encourage parents to attend the sessions not only as a powerful example but also because they can see some ways to bring the slow, the calm and the quiet to family life, even if it’s only for a short time every day. The results will be worth the small effort of setting aside that quiet time. You don’t need to be any sort of expert but what is required is a desire to offer mindful moments to your children be that as a teacher, parent, grandparent or carer of any type. Your own example of being slow, centred and calm is also a powerful example and can positively reflect in children’s lives.
I am not saying I’m an expert mindfulness practitioner, by the way. I’m motivated by my own personal experience of the benefits of mindfulness and a desire to share that in a practical way. I’ve been meditating for the last ten years and know first-hand how life-changing, making time to be slow and calm can be. By adding my teaching skills to the mix, I’m sharing mindful experiences that are practical, easy, fun and inexpensive and abundantly appropriate to use in everyday life.
You’ll find many resources on our website to help parents and teachers share mindfulness with their children. You can find out more about hosting a workshop here. We’d love to work with you.