What goes through your head when you hear the word mindfulness or meditation?

Do you probably think of an old monk sitting with his legs crossed and eyes shut for days?

Basically, to be mindful is to live in the present and in the moment without being judgmental.

To simplify it, living mindfully is for any person that has a brain and a fairly busy life. You do not need to change your personality, or who you are to be able to live in the present moment.

Mindfulness is not something we leave in bed. We carry it everywhere we go. You can live fully and in the present by practicing mindfulness when queuing in the bank, when taking a bath, when waiting for your flight, when in a train, when having coffee with a friend, or when walking by noticing the natural and beautiful gardens, or even a butterfly fluttering by you. Mindfulness allows us to live in the here and now and with greater clarity and peace of mind.

Teaching mindfulness to children is an increasingly growing trend in schools and private practices.

Objectives of Mindfulness Training in our EQ lessons

• To equip the children with skills to develop their inner and outer awareness of what goes on around them.

• To help the children understand their thoughts and feelings.

• To help the children improve their attention, focus, and socio-emotional skills.

“Being” in Class

10 minutes of meditation practice is an everyday norm at the shelter homes. It helps the kids to improve their awareness, to pay attention, and to remain focused on the here and now.

At the beginning of class, the kids are instructed to close their eyes and be quiet. They pay attention to their surrounding, listen to the sounds, and feel the environment for about 5 minutes. They then open their eyes slowly and begin to list down all the sounds they heard. At first, they only manage to hear about 10 types of sounds, but as they indulge in the practice week after week, they begin to hear up to 30 sounds because they are now more focused and attentive.

In subsequent lessons, the children are taught how to breathe deeply through blowing bubbles. Besides having fun playing with the bubbles, the children learn how to breathe deeply and exhale slowly, a practice also referred to as mindful breathing.

Parting Shot!!

The benefits related to mindfulness far outweigh the negatives. If you have more suggestions on being mindful, we would love to hear from you in the comments section.

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