“Quiet the mind, and the soul will speak.”
~ Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavati
Meditation is as vast and unique as each of us. This is such a personal, life-long, fulfilling practice. It is one you will grow with and will grow with you. So it’s important that we find what speaks to us and truly nurtures our mind, body, and souls.
I’d like to begin by dispelling some misconceptions around meditation:
Anyone can practice at any age
You can practice seated, standing, moving, laying down…
You can work with your breath, scent, sound healing, affirmation, mantra, visualization or any other sense (this is mindfulness)
Meditation is part of a mindful lifestyle and can be practiced in short increments throughout the day
Prayer is meditation
You can practice anytime, anywhere... you just need to go within
If you are new to meditation or open to exploring, read on for tools, tips, and insights. Some ideas may intrigue, others may not – this is your practice to enjoy.
Movement, or yoga, and meditation are simple and essential tools to keeping ourselves balanced and healthy. Meditation helps by:
Nourishing and calming our nervous system
Helping balance hormones for health (see Meditation for Better Sleep + Health)
Improve our sleep and decrease anxiety and depression (supporting optimal vagus nerve health)
Support healthy functioning of all our organs
Increase our self-awareness, ability to speak up for our needs and establish healthy boundaries
Improve our relationships + ability to communicate clearly and compassionately
Help us with clarity and objectivity when approaching challenges
Offer us an internal oasis wherever we go
Improve our creative capacity and problem solving skills
Be more objective and clear
Offer us simple, natural, healthy coping tools
Bring us into greater alignment with our purpose and vision for greater joy!
Help us heal ourselves by un-packaging physical and emotional trauma, and limiting beliefs (I would recommend also working with a counsellor, therapist, or craniosacral + somatoemotional release therapist who resonates with you)
The sooner we learn these techniques, the easier it is to feel happy and calm, even in challenging moments. If you have children in your life, showing them some of these basic tools can make a world of difference. Children are naturally very open and receptive to meditation and breathwork. They intuitively know these tools work.
As adults, many of us have learned to alternative and maybe not so healthy ways to try to find peace and happiness, however they are often fleeting. I feel incredibly fortunate to have been exposed to meditation and breath-work as a child. Despite this, in my teens during a very challenging period in my life, I turned to unhealthy methods (eating disorders + alcohol) to try to cope. I had completely forgotten about these tools my Mam had taught me as a child. It wasn’t until I broke my ankle running, that I had a much needed wake-up call and returned to meditation to heal. Since then, meditation has become a regular part of my life and led me on some interesting experiences and insights. It’s for this reason, that sharing these simple tools with children, teens, and adults has become part of my life mission. And so, let’s explore some very accessible tools anyone can practice.
When you are learning, it’s easiest to find a quiet space you won’t be disturbed. Make this your safe, special space to unwind. This breath is to help ground and calm. To begin:
Close your eyes and take a moment to notice the breath and sensations within.
Feel your feet or hips on the floor.
You can imagine roots growing from your Root Chakra (base of spine) or feet into the Earth to ground your energy.
Inhale allowing your rib cage to expand (you can place your hands on your belly or lower ribs).
Exhale through your mouth or nose, allowing the body to soften and begin to relax.
Continue with this easy, flowing breath, allowing it to lengthen as feels comfortable.
Begin tuning into your body.
What sensations do you feel? Where? What are they trying to tell you. If there is nothing you connect with, that’s ok, keep breathing.
When you’re ready, you can imagine breathing white light into your Crown Chakra (top of head) as you inhale.
As you exhale allowing this white light to float down through your body, and into the Earth.
You are welcome to notice this light touching every corner of your body, and maybe even radiating around you (into your Aura).
You can practice the same breath above with children. Sometimes laying down is easier for little ones. If they are laying down, encourage them to feel every point of their body from their toes to their head melting towards the Earth. You can also place a stuffy on their tummy so they can watch it rise and fall with their breath. If they like, allow them to choose a calming colour to breath in. Perfect for a restful sleep.
With daily practice coming into this relaxed state becomes second nature, even during challenging situations. I would recommend practicing for at least 5 minutes every morning, to help set up your day for success. I also recommend clients take breaks throughout the day to practice, to further ingrain this simple solution and to help bring you back to yourself.
Below are more tools you can access for support to empower yourself as a parent and in-turn your children.
Please reach out if you have any questions – I always love to hear from you!
ps. Please share this with anyone you feel would benefit!