May is National Meditation Month. Recently I saw this article online, Why Our Children Should Be Taught To Meditate In School. This falls into the ‘why didn’t I think of that’ category. If I had known or thought about this I would have encouraged my children to learn how to meditate when they were younger.
In our ever-increasing-speed society children are being encouraged toward more distractibility, more tools, more stimulation. There’s no down time. Although he never really said it, Gandhi is attributed with saying, “There’s more to life than increasing it’s speed.” Whether Gandhi said it or not it is a valuable sentiment. Somehow, unfortunately, I don’t think our modern society is listening.
Everywhere we turn we are surrounded by messages that urge us to move faster, be more productive, encourage speed over mindfulness. There’s even a saying that highlights this point…”That’s so [insert number] seconds ago.” I know it’s meant to be amusing but it highlights the problem that we face staying focused in our daily lives. Everything is presented as needing to be instant, now, online, immediately. It’s no wonder that rates of hypertension are rising among our young people. They’re being stressed, pressured, and sped up beyond reasonable limits. I personally believe this to be true for adults also.
Instead of joining in to the overwhelming frenzy for fast everything, perhaps we need to re-evaluate things and slow down just a bit. If we taught kids how to meditate in school it’s possible that their minds could stop spinning to frantically. They could learn how to recenter themselves and focus. And what a great tool to be able to take forward into adulthood.
Part of the problem is that those stressful and overwhelmed feelings don’t stop just because we become adults. Indeed for some adults it’s even worse. And we do it to ourselves. We allow ourselves to be sucked into the pressures and the stress that leave us feeling overwhelmed. What if instead of giving in we slowed down. What if we made a choice to make a change? For those of us who are already adults and feeling overwhelmed? Stop for a moment. Take a few deep breaths. That in and of itself is a good beginning. Need some guided resources? Below are a few to get you started
- 8 Minute Meditation
- Meditation For Beginners
- Sensational Meditation for Children
- Planting Seeds: Practicing Mindfulness with Children