Yoga and Mindfulness for children and Teens.
This week I have been singing a lot of fun songs and practicing yoga and breath work with my toddler. Teaching little ones about their emotions is a powerful thing but we must also work to understand our own. Sometimes we try to resist a certain emotion, labeling it bad or negative when maybe we just need to sit with it. Maybe by sitting with it and allowing yourself to feel that emotion, it will pass when it is ready to pass or when you are ready to let it go.
There is much uncertainty at the moment, but then there always was. So what can we do?
If you feel uncertain, unsafe, worried or just a little off balance - think of your feet. Feel your feet on the ground, even in your shoes. Bring your awareness to your surroundings, your energy, your breath. Stand in a tall mountain pose or sit upright on a chair with both feet on the ground. Repeat this affirmation "May I feel safe where I am right now. May I inhale peace. May I exhale stress and overwhelm"
You can do this as many times as you need to throughout the day. It is a great way to start each morning. Please know that you can always reach out for support. Some feelings can feel 'a lot' and there is no where that states we have to do it alone.
Yoga means union - it could mean the union of mind, body and breath but it can also mean the union of us all coming together in this human experience. We are all in this together.
So when ever your emotions are running wild, please just stop and think of your feet.
The Importance of Self-Care
As parents, we take on a lot of responsibility for someone else’s needs and happiness. Sometimes we can neglect our own needs because we are so busy looking after our loved ones. Of course, taking care of them is great, and you should do it with love, but you are important too. Self-care should be made a priority so that you are in a good position to help others and you don’t end up burning out, feeling over worked, overwhelmed, and underappreciated. It can be helpful to schedule in time for self-care on your daily planner just as you would an important meeting or appointment. Taking some time for you can make all the difference. I’m sure you have heard the Cliché saying about filling your own cup first as you cannot pour from an empty cup. Cliché it may be, but it is so true.
We cannot teach what we haven’t learned. We can’t expect our children to grow up strong, happy, and carefree if we don’t model that behavior ourselves. Taking this time for you is not selfish. It will make you a better parent. It will allow you to show up at your best, less likely to snap at the smallest thing or to be too fatigued to listen whole heartedly. Taking care of yourself will allow you to recharge and feel balanced again.
What is something that you love doing? Maybe you haven’t done it for a while, maybe even not since having children. If you’re stuck for ideas give this next exercise a go. Have a pen and paper ready to jot down your ideas.
Spark Joy Activity
Sit in a cross-legged position on the floor (you can use a pillow or yoga block to lift the hips slightly) or sitting up tall on a chair with feet firmly on the ground. Allow your hands to rest naturally on your lap or palms open to the sky.
Take between 5 – 10 deep, slow breaths. Allow the mind to clear as you focus your attention on the breath. Any time your mind starts to wonder, bring it back to the breath. Close your eyes if it feels right to do so.
Once you are settled, think about when you were a child. What activities did you really love doing? How did they make you feel? Did you enjoy baking, painting, horse riding, dancing, singing, playing board games, getting out in nature? The sky is the limit here. Think of anything you can.
Once you feel inspired open your eyes and start to write down as many activities you can think of that you once enjoyed.
Now look at the list and see if anything listed would spark joy in your life now.
Another way to add in a little self care to your week...
I have new yoga classes starting next week (23rd September 2020) for parents wanting to connect with themselves and other parents and to move their body in a way that feels good. No need to worry about childcare or traveling as it is all from the comfort of your own home. Click here to book now.
Take the 7 day self care challenge!
Check out my free 7 day self care challenge here.
You may also be interested in
Self love, that inner critic and breaking out of comfort zones.
Please comment below what sparks joy for you. Have a great week!
Anxiety is one of the most common mental health issues in Ireland. Anxiety can feel like it is taking over everything. It can make our heart race, our thoughts run wild, our stomach sick and social situations exceedingly difficult. It can lead to panic attacks and feelings of unworthiness. The good news is that we can regain control. We can experience anxiety; we can feel it fully and then we can choose to let it go. Anxiety is a feeling and feelings are created with our thoughts. We can choose to change our thought patterns with practice. Children may be feeling more stressed, worried, and anxious with the challenges that 2020 is bringing us. Understandably. This is a strange time. If we can provide our children with tools to get through these challenging times, teach them to find their own calm within the chaos, they will be able to come back to their calm through anything. In this guide I have laid out a few simple ways we can help our children get back to the present moment and get back to their own true selves.
• Poses for anxiety
• Breathing techniques
Click here to download -> anxiety_yoga_toolkit.pdf
I am so happy to have received such positive feedback for this booklet. Please let me know if this has been any help to you. I would love to hear your reviews on it.
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You may also be interested in these Free ABC yoga cards --> Click here.