You don’t need science or statistics to experience the results of how meditation clears your mind and helps forget your worries. However, more research is being done today more than ever and meditation is now highly recommended for those of all ages. For children, learning to practice meditation will help them improve academic performance, learn new skills, become calmer and develop resilience. They also become more aware of their “self,” their emotions, and become more accepting of others.
There are several ways to introduce your child to meditation. Guided imagery is delightful because it utilizes your child’s natural born ability to pretend and daydream. Using audio recordings or reading guided meditations out loud from your Kindle or a book, you can have your child rest comfortably and enjoy this special time with you. Different types of guided imagery will invite your child’s imagination to open and visualize various things such as slowly taking a walk through to a forest and mentally experiencing the sights and sounds. This is very effective at clearing the mind and relaxing the whole body. As you can imagine, this type of activity with your child is a perfect segue to bedtime or to transition from one part of the day to the next.
One very effective meditation for balancing moods is to ask your child to close their eyes and think about a tree that has fruit on it. You child will learn to identify the fruits. Then tell them some of the fruits are happy and some are sad. Ask your child to imagine asking the sad fruits what they need to feel happy again. It might be that they need water and your child can imagine watering the fruit, smiling at it or giving it smiles or hugs or other forms of positive energy. As the fruit becomes happy, your child will automatically feel happier as well and build great empathy skills.
Another meditation tip for your child is to have him or her sit in a cross-legged position. When they get comfortable, ring a bell. Ask your child to listen to the sound the bell makes and to raise his or her hands when the sound completely stops. You can then ask your child to keep eyes closed and listen to the sounds they hear and describe them to you including if those sounds are close or far away.
Another excellent form of meditation is to use a cloud gazing technique where your child sits quietly, focuses on the inhaling and exhaling of their breathing. Tell your child that when he or she starts to have thoughts, to envision them as if they are clouds and watch as they pass through the “sky” inside your child’s mind.
Doing these types of meditative practices with your child will help increase his or her awareness of what is going on around them, they will gain focus, learn better and get along with others better as well. They are also a great way to have fun and create deeper bonds with your child. If possible, make meditation into a daily or weekly routine for the best results.