Use the holidays to take a moment to be mindful with your little yogis.
Teaching kids mindfulness techniques will give them the skills to perceive, express, understand and regulate their emotions.
It replaces wandering, distracted minds with thoughtful responses.
Try these two mindful activities this holiday season.
Sip your Drink like a Monk
I read many books from the Buddhist traditions while in my yoga studies and came across something interesting in the book, The Buddha Walks into a Bar. In one meditation, we learn to drink one sip of beer at a time to notice the effects of inebriation over a very slow period.
We can adapt this meditation to kids using plain hot cocoa to promote mindful awareness!
Slowly sip your hot cocoa one small mouthful at a time. Doing so, notice the warmth of your body, the activation of and sensation on your taste buds, and how much more you can savor the drink when you drink slowly. Notice how the cup feels in your hands as you drink it.
Recommendation: enjoy your drink warm and not too hot so children can participate.
Take a Mental Picture
We can foster an appreciation for the preciousness of relationships and the finite nature of life.
The holidays tend to be a time of getting together with loved ones we may not normally see. That being the case, we often see special people that are not available to us at other times of the year. When you are with your loved ones, imagine that any moment could be your last moment together. This is not a practice that is meant to scare you. Rather, it is meant to encourage you to be in touch with the preciousness of every relationship and the finite time you have with each person in this world.
Take a mental picture of the people you enjoy the holidays with. Notice how they look, their posture, the colors they choose to wear, the expressions and smiles on their faces. Take them in as you mentally note their appearance and how you are feeling in response to seeing them.
Mentally noticing: I notice my cousin is wearing the color red and seems peaceful on their faces. I notice my uncle appears tired and has not left his chair. I notice love permeating from my sister as she served everyone their meal.
For more holiday mindfulness, check out our 12 Days of Yoga Cards, which includes yoga cards, mindfulness activities, coloring pages and more!