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The benefits of meditation for kids

by Suzanne Wintner, MSW, LICSW, PhD

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Meditation has gained popularity as a regular health practice for adults and kids. Given the benefits of mindfulness and meditation, this is great news! Teaching kids to meditate is beneficial to their well-being, and helps them become more mindful, balanced, and compassionate towards themselves and others.

Kids and meditation

Children sometimes find it easier to be mindful than adults because their minds aren’t as clouded with previous experiences and ingrained ways of thinking. This can make it easier for them to meditate. That said, children learn differently than adults, so there are a few things to keep in mind when introducing your child to meditation.

Kids can be wiggly and silly, so a brief and fun meditative experience often works best. Guided meditations for kids tend to incorporate a lot of imagination and kid friendly elements, like balloons, rainbows, and adventure. PeaceOut is a great example of guided meditations for kids you may want to try.

Tuning in

Guided meditation for kids helps them tune into the natural process of self-observation using relaxing scripts and guided imagery. Kids are prompted to turn inward, and become more aware of their senses, breath, and the present moment. There are many different types of guided meditations, so you can customize the experience for your kids based on what they might need or feel like doing that day. Guided meditations often explore topics such as relaxation, deep breathing, and noticing your body. Some are geared towards specific situations or feeling states such as school, home, bedtime, anxiety, etc. This guided meditation for kids helps kids practice listening to their bodies.

Benefits of meditation

Learning to meditate helps kids develop emotional regulation skills that will serve them well throughout their lives. Meditation also enhances the mind-body connection.  This means that meditation for kids has the power to lower stress and anxiety and improve confidence and self-esteem. Meditation can also improve cognitive functioning. In the hustle and bustle of modern life, it’s more important than ever for kids to practice slowing down and focusing their attention.

Creating a healthy habit

Help create a healthy habit of peace and self-acceptance by incorporating meditation into your child’s life. Remember, meditation and mindfulness exercises can be done throughout the day, or you can have a designated time to practice. It doesn’t have to be long to be beneficial. Short meditations and mindful moments can go a long way.

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