It’s been great to have some time off over Christmas and New Year to slow down and enjoy time with the family. BUT, now with back to school and back to work busyness in full swing you might be wondering if it’s possible to keep that calmer more connected feeling you have with your family?
Mindfulness is a fabulous approach to life that allows you to make the most of your day and nurture a loving and strong connection with your family. You can use this approach to manage stress, stay focussed on your work, be attentive and patient with your children and create a peaceful home – and there is loads of research to support that. Mindfulness is about being present and aware of any moment in time – whether you’re working on a report, cooking dinner or enjoying down time with your children.
Have you noticed that you spend most of your day on auto-pilot? Running from one thing to another and multi-tasking? And have you noticed how that makes you feel stressed and even short-tempered with your co-workers, partner and your kids?
There is another way. Using mindfulness you can have a different life. Here are some simple steps to a happier family life:
- Focus on one thing at a time – uni-tasking instead of multi-tasking. Multi-tasking is very stressful as the brain tries to manage more than one activity and in truth it can’t. By focusing on one thing and a time like talking to your child rather than texting and talking at the same time, you’ll be more present, loving and get things done more quickly too!
- Be kind to yourself and to others. Positive thoughts, loving thoughts and acceptance of ‘what is’ creates loving feelings. Negative thoughts and criticism creates stress and negative feelings. When you have negative thoughts simply allow them to float through your mind in the same way that clouds float by in the sky…pay them little to no attention and instead focus on more positive thoughts.
- Take some time out to stop and smell the roses – literally – enjoy a 5-10 min walk in nature and feel the peace it can bring when you’re looking at the trees, smelling the flowers, enjoying the feeling of wind or sun on your face. You can do this alone, with your partner or with your kids.
Mindfulness doesn’t have to take long so don’t talk yourself out of it saying you don’t have time to stop …it can be as simple as taking 2-3 deep breaths, or sitting for a few minutes to enjoy a cup of tea or a chocolate or listening to your children with your full attention and seeing the joy in their eyes and the love in their heart for you!
If you’d like to know more about mindfulness for better parenting, you can listen to this interview with Dr Rosina McAlpine and Dr Craid Hassad, click here.
Article by popular Golden Door Guest Speaker Dr Rosina McAlpine.
Dr Rosina McAlpine is an Associate Professor at the University of Sydney Business School and has a Masters degree and a PhD in education. She is an internationally recognised, multi award-winning researcher and educator. Since becoming a parent, she has been developing programs to help parents overcome the challenges of modern day parenting using the latest research in child development. A keen researcher, Rosina has edited a book with chapters from leading minds around the world in psychology, neuro-science and biology for the book entitled Inspired Children: how the leading minds of today raise their children. For more information visit http://www.drrosina.com/