Focus of the Week and Things to Try
Consider Adding Meditation to Your Day
Meditation is gaining in popularity as more people discover the benefits. What once was thought to be some kind “off-the-wall” practice is becoming mainstream; with everyone self-quarantining, this may be a great time to start – especially considering some of the many benefits.
Scientists have found that meditation decreases stress and anxiety, increases attention span and positive thoughts, leads to better sleep, and boosts the immune system.
If you are interested in weaving a mediation practice into your family’s day, we have some tips.
- Plan on kids getting the giggles. It may take a few tries to get them to settle down. Laugh with them and try again.
- Challenge kids to practice silence while sitting or lying down. Ask them to notice their breathing (expect some wiggles).
- If kids are lying down, put a small pillow or stuffed animal on their belly to help them observe their breathing.
- Consider guided meditations. There are a lot of sites out there, and Fragrant Heart is outstanding! It has guided meditations for all ages and even offers a “how-to” course.
Common Sense Media has numerous app suggestions for kids.
- Gather around the dining table, light a candle (battery operated if you are worried about the flame), and practice moments of silence while gazing at the candle. Candles can help with focus.
- Compare how you feel before meditation to how you feel afterward.
- Play soothing instrumental music.
- Make it a routine practice, so everyone has a chance to work on their skills.
- If your kids are not interested, don’t force it—model meditation by doing it for yourself and see if it sparks an interest for them.
It’s a challenge to quiet the mind (which is why guided meditations are an excellent tool); some days are easier than others, so don’t get discouraged. The practice of meditation is a positive, practical, and scientifically proven way to improve our daily lives.