Would you love your children to meditate – but don’t know where to start?
Do you think your children would benefit from a practice that takes them into their true selves instead of constantly looking outside themselves for their answers?
Are they worried, anxious and stressed out and you don’t know why?
This New Year period is the time to start them meditating, regardless of age.
This time of rest and recovery is so beneficial to us. Do you find yourself creating new habits? Getting rid of the old ones? Are you more inspired? Resourceful? More alive?
I am feeling so much more relaxed than I was just a month ago with the Christmas deadline looming and the children finishing school. This period of life allows us to clear out what wasn’t working in our lives and establish new patterns and habits.
For the kids too. My kids have started to ask for meditations before bed. Something that we can do together, lying down, after a little bit of reading and reflecting on what they are grateful for today. This time I have committed to doing it with them and for them. Giving them five minutes each to meditate and just spend some time together.
I created a meditation for children after searching for one that didn’t create all sorts of fantasies – like pretending to be a knight or a superhero etc – for them. I found it too stimulating for them before bed and some of them they were even scared of. I started using adult meditations on them and then recorded my own and uploaded it to my teacher profile on Insight Timer.
If you are interested in doing it with your kids you can access it here. Nearly 3000 people have already used it with their children.
Why should anybody meditate?
Richard Davidson, professor of psychology and psychiatry at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health and the Waisman Centre, says that a growing body of “hard-nosed neuroscience research” is attracting attention to the profound effects of meditation. “This deserves serious scientific attention,” he says. “It also explains why people spend time sitting on the meditation cushion, because of the effects on day-to-day life.”
Davidson compares mental practice to physical exercise. “We all know that if an individual works out on a regular basis, that can change cardiovascular health,” he says. “In the same way, these data suggest that certain basic mechanisms of the mind, like attention, can also be trained and improved through systematic practice.”
Often in life when something is good, well it’s just too good to be true. Chocolate tastes amazing – the pleasure centres in your mind go wild for it – but it’s not good for you. The insane thing about meditation is that there is no downside.
You might try to argue that taking time out of your day to meditate is a down-side – you are losing productivity, but that’s not true. The research shows you that it actually increases productivity and I know that I get things done quicker, more proficiently and perhaps more intelligently when I have meditated and have a regular meditation practice.
Research studies show that people who meditate:
- Sleep better
- Use oxygen more efficiently
- Have increased production of the anti-aging hormone DHEA
- Have lower cholesterol levels
- Have decreased blood pressure and hypertension
- Have lower levels of depression, anxiety and stress
- Are more emotionally attuned
By giving the gift of meditation to our children we will create a generation of adolescents, who will have strategies, besides drinking, drug-taking and rebellious behaviour, to use when they are feeling rejected, over-whelmed, emotional and hormonal.
By bringing them to their breath, by focusing on the present, these kids will have the tools to increase their self-esteem and to really know their self, leaving them free to focus on their unique talents and gift them to the world.
And if that won’t change the world, I don’t know what will.