With schools temporarily closed and many of us hunkering down at home with our kids, we thought it’d be helpful to feature a series of recommended mindfulness activities for the entire family.
Here are several ways you can practice mindfulness to bring more kindness and compassion into your home during these swirling times!
Just like the grown-ups in their lives, your children will likely experience some big emotions during this time. The activities recommended below are ideal for children ages 4 – 10, and can help address a specific emotion to work through these feelings — together.
These activities are available in the “For Kids” section of the All Ages app, with premium tracks now free for the next 60 days!
- For a lot of our team members, we’re feeling the anxiety rising, especially as parents. We’ve had kids describe anxiety as a sense of butterflies in the stomach, or having a hard time falling asleep because the mind can’t stop thinking. Rather than get caught up in worried thoughts or feelings, kids can focus their attention on something they can do to address their emotions, like these activities here:
- Being stuck at home, kids may have a lot of energy they just don’t know what to do with! Here are two ways for everyone to use their bodies and all of their senses to work off some energy:
Feeling Angry or Annoyed
- If your child is feeling frustrated by someone or something, they might want to scream or yell or lose their cool. When big emotions come up, these activities can help kids cool down:
Feeling Gratitude & Kindness
- Whenever we are having a hard time, there’s always something we can do, like remembering a few good things that make us feel happy and grateful or practicing kindness. Here are a few recommendations to focus on the good stuff:
Having a Hard Time Sleeping
- With so much going on, it can be challenging to put kids down to bed or create an environment for them to get a truly restful slumber. These activities are especially great at the end of the day:
Remember, when practicing mindfulness with kids, it will almost never go as planned. That’s okay! Here are some tips that might help things go more smoothly:
Check in every day with yourself and your family.
Encourage your family at meal time or before bed to share how they are feeling mentally, physically, and emotionally. You can even use our app to check-in with how you’re feeling together.
Allow your kids to experience mindfulness their own way.
We recommend that you encourage your children to try meditation or mindful games, rather than insisting or forcing it. Doing these activities with them is a great way to inspire participation. Whether your child is being uncooperative or distracted, or if they’re fully engaged and happy to be playing a mindful game, either way, allow them to experience their own journey.
Approach the activities with openness and curiosity.
While it might seem like there’s a “right” way to practice mindfulness, the good news is that there’s actually no way to get it wrong! The experience is different for everyone. Notice how you feel in the moment without necessarily trying to change anything or judge what you observe. You may feel more settled after an activity; you also may not. Both are normal and okay.
Learn to be with whatever’s happening.
With mindfulness, it can be tempting to “fix” a problem, yet we’re here to remind you to “let go” of any agendas or goals. It’s actually more supportive to learn how to be kind and compassionate with yourself – especially with whatever thoughts or feelings that come up – and the more you can accept whatever is happening wholeheartedly in moments of mindfulness, the more you can bring that approach to all experiences in your life.
As parents ourselves, we’re here alongside you in learning how to navigate all the ups and downs of being human.
We can do this,
The Stop, Breathe & Think team
P.S. We’re offering ongoing opportunities to connect LIVE via our Facebook channel—using this time at home as an opportunity to dive deeper into mindfulness practices to keep us healthy and at peace.
- Every Tuesday at 12pm PDT/3pm EDT, we’ll host a live guided meditation led by your favorite narrators from our app.
Every Thursday at 10am PDT/1 pm EDT, we’ll host a live family mindfulness activity parents and children can do together.