You will have heard so much about ‘mindfulness’ and how it is so important for our well-being. If we can instil this in our kids from a young age, hopefully, we can encourage them to be well-rounded, balanced and happy adults.
Life happens: we think we’ve got it and then curveballs are thrown our way, twists and turns occur that often make a roller coaster feel like a stroll in the park.
WE GET IT!
1. USE A POSITIVE WORD A DAY / CREATE A POSITIVE WORD WALL
Words have a huge impact, no matter how old you are. They truly do matter. The way we speak to ourselves and to others can truly shape our future. We wrote another blog post on this, you can see it here – WORDS MATTER: How we speak to ourselves, & others, matters!
Stan Toler’s book, The Power of Positive Words, gives great insight into how powerful our words can be. The opening line states: ‘Words have the power to shape reality, so we must learn to evaluate the intention behind the words we say and hear.’
Therefore, it’s truly important our children are surrounded by positive words, so that, as they grow older it becomes second nature to only use positive words to support and encourage themselves and others.
Get started by choosing one positive word to use throughout the day. Choose a different word every day. Do this together, and see who can use the word the most.
Our journal gives a word a day, with a word count, and encouragement to think about the best time the word was used. It also encourages children to listen out for other positive words.
All the words you use daily, add them to a blackboard, corkboard, memo-board, or even use fridge magnets, just keep the momentum going.
At the end of each week talk about which word you loved the most and see if you can keep using it every single day.
Watch how your child becomes engrossed in using positive words. Laugh together as they use them in fun, creative and bizarre ways. Even if the word is out of context, leave it, it doesn’t matter! The fact your child is embracing this challenge is a wonderful gift in itself.
2. FUN IMAGINATIVE MEDITATION
PLEASE DON’T STOP READING! TRUST US THIS IS FUN!
We have all heard that meditation has SO many benefits (and if you’d like to read more about them, you can do so here www.healthline.com.). BUT … we also know meditation doesn’t float the boat of many adults, and now we are asking you to introduce it to your kids. Asking your kids to sit down and think of nothing could be a very hard task *yes, we hear you laughing* … and this is why we introduced ‘fun imaginative meditation’.
It’s important to make meditation fun and age-appropriate and while mindful breathing and visualisation are great meditation techniques for kids, we wanted to introduce an imaginative element, that allows them to connect with their inner beings and soul.
You can guide them to focus on their breath and imagine a peaceful place or a happy memory, or you can use our fun exercises from the journal. One day they are a magical unicorn, the next, a patient sloth. Each exercise helps to relax and feel their feelings. Being self-aware can truly help them grow.
More importantly, it’s about having fun … encourage them to connect with their inner Dolphin 🐬🐬
3. DRAW, WRITE, SCRIBBLE, OR JOURNAL THEIR THOUGHTS
Allow your kids to express themselves on paper!
Journalling has so many benefits, but it’s not always something children want to do, especially if they see it as an educational exercise. Therefore, it’s important to allow your children to express themselves without judgment. Let them use the pen and paper to release any thoughts without worrying about spelling mistakes, grammar, or even if it makes sense.
If you’d like to link on from the meditation exercise this is a great way to introduce your kids to journalling. Rather than letting these feelings go and forgetting about them, embracing them allows your child to connect with themselves. Being self-aware is a great tool for personal growth. Allow your child to discover, engage and embrace the feelings that came up when they were meditating.
Or, get them to draw a picture of what they could see when they were flying through the sky as a magical unicorn! How about using some positive words to draw pictures, or write, about what those words mean to them?
This can lead to them wanting to journal about other feelings that may have arisen in the day. Children are often faced with situations at school they don’t really understand, so helping them to unfold these situations and understand them from a different perspective is a great tool for adulthood.
Make it fun; get the colouring pens out, get the paints out, get the stickers out … do whatever helps your child to express themselves creatively in a positive way.
4. COLOURING & ART
Colouring and art can help you, and your child, massively with mindfulness. It provides a calming, meditative feeling that can help focus the mind and reduce stress and anxiety.
Engaging in a creative task like colouring, or painting, can also help promote a sense of awareness by encouraging your child to be present in the moment and fully focused on the task at hand.
Additionally, the act of colouring, or creating art, can be a positive and rewarding experience, which can help promote a sense of well-being and relaxation.
This article by The Sage House, ‘5 Ways Coloring Supports a Child’s Mental Health’ is well worth a read if you are wondering if colouring is powerful.
AND … of course … in our FREE journal, you will find daily inspiring messages and pictures to colour in.
5. INSPIRING & POSITIVE ACTIVITIES/GAMES
You can encourage children to engage in fun and interactive activities that focus on gratitude, mindfulness, and kindness.
As long as the activities are age-appropriate, they’ll find these challenges fun. It’s important also to celebrate their successes, as this will boost their confidence and sense of accomplishment.
Remember to keep the activities engaging and enjoyable, and let the children lead the way with their creativity and imagination. Some examples of activities could be creating gratitude journals, practicing deep breathing exercises, and doing random acts of kindness.
Puzzles are a great way to inspire children as they promote problem-solving skills, critical thinking, and creativity. You can use various types of puzzles such as jigsaw puzzles, crossword puzzles, Sudoku puzzles, and logic puzzles to challenge and engage children.
Puzzles also encourage perseverance, patience, and concentration, which are valuable life skills.
Integrate positivity in all that you do throughout the day!
We can all get wrapped up in ‘life’, there is ‘work’, ‘housework’, ‘family’, ‘celebrations’, ‘money’ … the list is endless and sometimes we forget to be present!
Allowing yourself to help your children be more positive will, without a doubt, make you more positive. Integrating different routines and actions throughout the day will also help.
For example, put a ‘feel good song’ before going out the door to school, play ‘feel good songs’ in the car, play ‘feel good songs’ after dinner … play ‘feel good songs’ whenever you can. Have a ‘positive word’ shout out on a morning, walk to school and see who can think of the most positive words. Walk to school and look at the beauty around you, what can you see? Look at the sky, and imagine the clouds to be animals.
There are so many ways you can encourage your children to be more positive throughout the day. And of course, to get you started, you can download our FREE journal … and even download one for yourself too!