Since setbacks are inevitable and minor frustrations abound, it’s worth teaching your kids how to relax and approach each situation being cool as a cucumber. A child’s mind is not fully formed and the smallest problems can seem insurmountable. The ability to calm themselves down is necessary in a variety of situations.
Luckily, there are also numerous options to learn how to do this.
Mindfulness is a state of mind that allows your child to be present in the moment and not be anxious about the future or having regrets about the past. Meditation is a method I frequently recommend as the fastest and easiest way to teach your children the gift of mindfulness.
Why? First of all, it’s easy to get the hang of the basics and achieve an immediate benefit. Second, there are many resources around that can help with getting started as well as fine tuning the practice.
A great way to get started is to do it with your kids. Adults need to relax too!
- Pick a quiet place in the house and put those phones away
- Next get comfortable. Close your eyes.
- Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth
- Do it for 5 minutes
- Slowly open your eyes and tell your child to do the same
Take a moment and appreciate where you are sitting and what you’re hearing and seeing.
How does the cushion feel? Do you hear the clock ticking? Do you see the sun’s rays through the window?
Feel your body and mind being one. Not only will your child feel calmer when the time is up but they can slowly learn to calm themselves down in stressful situations. For instance, when someone teases them and they feel like exploding, they can take a moment and recall how it feels to breathe in and out slowly. This can calm them down and avoid a painful situation.
Yoga is another wonderful way to develop your kid’s resilience. It’s a gentle form of exercise that strengthens the muscles and can be done by someone with any level of fitness.
The benefits of yoga include:
- A stronger body
- Avoidance of injuries
All of this will provide your child with a strong foundation to be persistent and grittier. As with meditation, plenty of resources can point you in the right direction.
Prayer is also invaluable in reducing stress if you are a believer. The concentration required for prayer makes the mind calmer and allows it to focus. This in turn reduces stress.
Go ahead and try any of these today. I’m always interested in learning new things about you. How do you reduce stress?