“I am so busy”, or “I am too busy” are statements you will probably hear at least once a day. But are we just busy being busy? And how busy is busy? Is being busy just fashionable or do we feel that we are expected to be busy? Are we defining our worth by how busy we are?
I was talking to a past student of the Chilled Out Child meditation and mindfulness facilitator programme earlier today about how healthy and essential it is to take a step back and slow life down a little. We both agreed on this simple question “how we can know who we really are, if we are rushing through life and not giving ourselves enough time to reflect on where we have been, where we are now and where we might want to be going?”
Children learn by example, which can create some hilarious moments. Think of the toddler who picks up a toy phone loudly announcing “hello, hello, I am too busy to talk now!” or the three-year-old who struts around the room flinging a scarf around it’s neck loudly exclaiming that it is in a rush and cannot find it’s car keys. How many of us can recognise ourselves in these role-play moments? Hilarious yes, but not so hilarious if you are that busy throughout your life well into adulthood and dashing around your house frantically seeking the car keys and flinging your phone around, shouting commands at it saying you are too busy to speak now is part of everyday life…. and your normal way of being.
Eventually all this dashing and flailing about is going to lead to feelings of stress and then develop into anxiety.
Now might be a good time to create low stress environments for yourself and your children.
Here are some basic ideas to think about;
- To start with do not over schedule yourself or your children.
- Ask yourself and your children which activities bring you all joy and stick to the activities which are having a positive emotional and psychological impact on your lives.
- Make sure family downtime involves relaxing and chatting to each other. Staring at the TV might not be good enough down time.
- Make sure you all get enough sleep. Tired grumpy children, lead to tired grumpy parents and vice versa.
- Eat well and healthily and the occasional chocolate treat is good too. I met a mum once who was so strict she banned her child from eating chocolate! That would be devastating in my household.
- Listen to what your children are saying. This goes back to sitting and chatting to your children.
- Take the time to talk about what you like and do not like about life right now. If you all share your perceptions on things you will all understand each other better.
Remember that in order to take care of your children you must take care of yourself.
With this in mind, the Chilled Out Child meditation and mindfulness facilitator training programme starts with looking at what stress is and the development of your own meditation practice and then move on to how you can share these skills with children and teenagers.
If you would like to know more about developing your own meditation practice and how you can live life mindfully on purpose follow this link.