Mindfulness In Children

Child looking across a lake

One of the joys of being a parent is watching your children grow. Seeing them explore the world around them and take an interest in learning all about it. Noticing the leaves on the trees changing colour, ice melting to water, aeroplanes leaving contrails in the sky. Their natural observation leads them to other discoveries too. Today Munch found a small snail that had somehow become wedged in the opening of a larger snail’s shell.

This interest in our world always helps me to focus on being more mindful as well. I make a conscious effort to notice the small things around me along with the big ones. To take a moment to appreciate the wind on my skin and the varying colours of the clouds above. To engage in the present moment. More importantly though, to give time and attention to the little discoveries that my children make, and to interact with their present too. Whether I’ve seen it before or not, to them it’s important, and that’s what matters. And it matters that we focus on it at that point in time.

It occurred to me, a few years ago now, that whilst mindfulness may seem to come more naturally to children, it should still be consciously encouraged. A wise teacher friend led me in the direction of an excellent book, ‘Sitting Still Like A Frog’ (available on Amazon, click on the image below*). This brilliant book has exercises for you to complete with your children as you move through the chapters. My friend said that an ex-colleague of hers had used it at school with a primary class, such is its appeal.

I really believe in the benefit of practising mindfulness with my children. It can seem at times as though life is a constant rush between one place and the next for us all. That moment of calm though, that focusing of attention on the here and now with no judgement passed, is so important. In fact I think that it’s healthy for us all.

I don’t ever want them to lose those moments of sitting still. Of feeling. Of collecting their thoughts. Of clearing their heads of the noise that can so easily envelop us as we get older.

With this in mind, we are putting more focus on these little moments this year, consciously filling our diary a little less and giving more opportunity for the smaller things in life. Listening to each other. Learning from each other. Celebrating each other.

Did you know that next week (5 – 11 February) is Children’s Mental Health Week? The theme this year is ‘Being Ourselves’ and you can find out more about it, here.

Do you encourage mindfulness? I’d love to know what works in your family! Do drop me a comment below.

Mindfulness In Children
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*N.B. This post contains affiliate links. For more information, please visit my disclosure page here.

29th January 2018

34 comments

This is a very eye opening post! I’m absolutely going to cherish those little moments and ensure my daughters state of mind is healthy! Thank you for sharing #blogstravaga

Thank you for your comment. Yes, easy to let the little moments slip by sometimes x

Yep, totally agree about teaching them mindfulness! I do have a meditation book ready to read to Isabelle when she’s older, and I think Headspace have a children’s section to their meditations so that’ll work!

It feels so important in this fast paced rush of a world that we live in. Even just being aware is important 🙂

This is something I really want to try when the tiny one gets a bit bigger. #blogstravaganza

It’s a lovely thing to do with them, and good for us as parents too! x

That little book looks fantastic. I think when I grew up we were left to our own devises and naturally would spend time in our own heads. Today children are more entertained and occupied with exciting and interesting tasks. Giving them an opportunity to sit and be mindful is a good idea I think xx

I agree. I remember spending a lot of time running around outside when I was a child which I loved, and naturally noticing the little moments. Then again, I didn’t have homework when I was 4, or SATs when I was 6, or the other pressures that come with full time education in this country. I think that plays a big part in heaping pressure on children and detracting from the benefits of just ‘being’, which can’t be a good thing 🙁 xx

Sounds so relaxing and so good for them. Great post x #blogstravaganza

Thank you. Yes, really calms things down here!

The book looks great. It’s so easy to get caught up in the day to day hustle and bustle of life that we are probably all guilty of not taking enough time to just ‘be’. I know I need to do it more. #blogstravaganza

I agree. I’m good at encouraging this with my boys but need to do it more for myself as well.

I love mindfulness; it has changed my life and helped me manage the stresses of everyday life. I have written a similar post and agree that it’s something that we can teach our children. #blogstravaganza

It really does help to focus and let go doesn’t it?

This is definitely a book that I will be looking into. I dip in and out of mindfulness, so if I could get the girls involved I think it would benefit us all and hopefully we’d stick to it more! Thanks so much for the recommendation and for hosting my lovely, it’s great to have you as always xx

Thank you for having me! This book has worked really well with our boys, and reminds us all to slow down 🙂

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That’s really made me think. The hubby finds it very interesting and never really thought about it for the children. The eldest teacher used to do it in class and he hated it 😂😂 but he does not do sitting still #Blogstravaganza

Oh bless him! There are other ways to do it which don’t involve sitting still, perhaps those would suit him better 😉

This isn’t something I have ever thought of introducing my daughter too. But after reading this I really do think she will benefit! #blogstravaganza

It’s so good to involve children I think. Life gets so busy for them, it’s good to encourage them to take time out (and it reminds me how important it is too 😉 ).

Yes to this, we try to teach our kids mindfulness and be aware of how they feel X #Blogstravaganza

It’s a lovely thing to do with children isn’t it?

We’re very open about mental health here and it is so important to teach our children to be kind to themselves. Wonderful post #blogstravaganza

Thank you. Yes, I completely agree x

If I’m honest I’ve never really thought about it until reading your post. It is something I’ll have to look into more and not just for the children. #Blogstravaganza

I’d highly recommend it. I need to remember to take time out to do it for myself as well as supporting my boys with slowing down.

This is really interesting. Definitely something to think about when my daughter gets a little older #blogstravaganza

Thanks. It is a nice thing to do with them and I hope will help them as they get older too.

Children need to learn to enjoy some peace and quiet, to be alone in their own heads. Mindfulness also leads to positive social relationships when you are more in tune with yourself and can better anticipate others. #blogstravaganza

I completely agree 🙂

This book sounds a good one to have #Blogstravaganza

It is good. It’s a very nice introduction to using the idea with children.

Life is so busy, its only when you stop that you really see things. I cant wait to go camping when Ben is older to get away from technology and into nature for a while! #blogstravaganza

Camping with children is lots of fun. You definitely feel more connected to the things that really matter!

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