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Hands on Techniques for Peace with Kids

Posted by on August 27, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Hands on Techniques for Peace with Kids

This week’s article comes from KidCentered.com marketing partner (and social media expert and RN and mother of two) Audrey “Christie” McLaughlin. Enjoy!

Hands on Techniques for Peace with Kids
by Audrey “Christie” McLaughlin

Do you teach your kids meditation techniques? How do you help your kids control and let go of their emotions? Earlier this summer I shared some of my One-Minute Meditation techniques (check that post out here), but guess what?

Those techniques work really well with kids too.

My oldest daughter is 6 years old, and is just now able to start employing and enjoying meditation techniques. The one-minute mediations are perfect because they require a very short attention span. Her favorite is “peace begins with me” and I have been working with her to do that when she is angry or scared. Sometimes we use it in lieu of the time-out, and I’m finding it is more effective for her.

My youngest is 3, and she lacks the coordination to do the “peace begins with me finger technique.” (Although she has fun trying.) Simple deep cleansing breaths work best for her at this age. She will initiate the breathing techniques herself sometimes when she is angry, frustrated or even hurt.

Since school is starting soon, (on an exciting note the school has a moment of silence every morning for the kids to pray or meditate or just sit, which I am super excited about) I have gotten our gong back out. We use this technique before school to help release stress and worry. We began using it last year a kindergarten was kind of a rough adjustment for my oldest.

I want to share this technique with you. Here’s how it works:

Equipment needed:

Gong or chime (this is a picture of the one we have) we keep it near our foyer.

How we use it:

Before leaving the house in the morning I let one of the kids chime the gong once and we all close our eyes and I instruct them, “as you hear the sound fading away from you, imagine it is carrying all of your stress and worries away.” It takes about 45 seconds for the sound to fade completely. That’s it!

Another technique to use it is as a sound cue when kids are arguing/fighting with each other. When you hear the kids fighting you simply ring the bell and everyone stops until the sound fades. Often times that distraction is just long enough got diffuse the tension.

If you have kids old enough to understand, you can even let them ring it when they feel tension is high in the house. Maybe mom and dad are in a spat, or mom or dad and another sibling are having a heated discussion, this works in those situations also.

3 Ways to Start Meditation Traditions

Posted by on August 6, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

3 Ways to Start Meditation Traditions
3 Ways to Start Meditation Traditions
by Audrey Christie McLaughlin
What kind of traditions do you have in your family? We all have them… some are good and some are not so good. Why not start a tradition around meditation? Here
are some fun ways to do so:
1. Around the Table.
Each meal you sit down to, when the food is on the table and everyone is seated, practice this simple breath. Breathe in: “I calm my body,” breathe out: “I smile.” You can adapt this as you see fit, another good one is, breathe in: “I ground myself” breathe out: “I’m full of gratitude.” This can be said silently or aloud as a group.
2. Gong it. 
Before leaving the house in the morning I let one of the kids chime the gong once and we all close our eyes and I instruct them, “As you hear the sound fading away from you, imagine it is carrying all of your stress and worries away.” It takes about 45 seconds for the sound to fade completely.
3. In the car. 
We often use meditations in the car, some for fun and some for the practicality of it. The Calm meditation (get yours free here) is great for fussiness and fits. On test days or before big sporting events, we like to use the Focus MindTime™ Meditation in the car on the way to the event to get prepped for the activity ahead. (you can grab that here).
There are all kinds of ways to start little meditation traditions in your house and family. Head over to Facebook and let us know your
favorite!

Mediation Quickie

Posted by on July 7, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Mediation Quickie
This week’s article comes from KidCentered.com marketing partner (and social media expert and RN and mother of two) Audrey “Christie” McLaughlin. Enjoy!
Meditation Quickie
by Audrey “Christie” McLaughlin
I have heard every excuse in the book about why people don’t meditate. I have probably said most of them too. Here is the thing that I have found, taking time out of my day has had profound effects on my health (mental and physical–my resting heart rate is 67), my creativity, my intuition, my stress level, my ability to parent well and manage a business, my ability to handle EVERYTHING.
For those of you completely new to meditation. Meditation is quieting and calming the mind. There are many different forms, moving meditation, still meditations, mantra meditations. There are as many meditations as there are ways to cook shrimp! (You know a la the Forest Gump movie.) The key is to find a meditation that works for you, helps you quiet the monkey mind, and reach deep peace.
Guess what? That isn’t going to happen at first, or maybe even the first ten times you try. Stick with it, like anything it takes practice…and once you get it….BLISS!
Today as promised, we are going to touch one quick way to meditate when you are crunched for time or technology, so crunched you only have 60 seconds.
Today’s Minute Meditation is the “Peace Begins With Me Meditation.” I first discovered a version of this in a Kundalini yoga class then I found this on GabbyTV.
Basically, you sit in a comfortable position, relax your arms and touch each finger to your thumb and repeat Peace Begins With Me for each tap.
For example:
1. touch thumb to index finger while mentally saying “peace”
2. touch thumb to middle finger while mentally saying “begins
3. touch thumb to ring finger while mentally saying “with”
4. touch thumb to pinkie finger while mentally saying “me”
Repeat for 60 seconds, or longer.
I find this one especially helpful when I get irritated or I am in a confrontational situation. I also use it before my radio show and any big meetings I may be involved in. Guess what else… it is also amazing for kids! My daughter uses it during her moment of silence every morning at school.
The cool thing about the physical technique is that you can use any “mantra” or phrase. Some of my other favorites include:
“I trust myself.” (tap “my” on one finger and “self” on the next)
“Linger, Laugh, Learn, Love”
“Love begins with me”
“Joy begins with me”
“Let Christie be Christie” (switch my name with your name)
Next is a simple breath meditation, you can do it for a minute or longer and just repeat mentally “Breath in” on your in breath, and “breath out” on the out breath.
You mind may wander, but just bring it back gently to your mantra.
Pretty simple, huh? No matter how much (or little) time you have. You can always find a minute to meditate!

Cooking As A Meditation?

Posted by on June 26, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Cooking As A Meditation?

Cooking As A Meditation
by Audrey Christie McLaughlin

Yes, I really mean cooking as a meditation; eating can be one too! Meditation is not always sitting perfectly still in lotus position chanting, in fact, that is only one type of meditation. There is no recipe for the “right way” to meditate.

So let’s take a closer look at preparing food or cooking as a meditation and what that might look like…because the result is a delicious and healthy meal that is nourishing for the body and mind.

In practice, preparing a meal as meditation can be as simple as practicing a mindful awareness while we are cooking and cleaning in the kitchen. You can start by setting the intention of working through your tasks in a relaxed and serene way while following your breathing.

When you are prepping the food and cooking, do so without rushing. As you are chopping vegetables, breathe awareness into your body. When you are boiling a pot of water to cook the vegetables, pay deep attention to the water that comes from the faucet, appreciating the cleanliness, fluidity and abundance of the water. When you click on the stove notice the electricity or the gas flame that allows you to boil the water or cook your food.

When you look at your vegetable, fruit, or grain, see the sun, rain, soil, work, sweat, and time it takes to take that seed and produce the food in front of you.

When you look at the meat that has made it to your plate, think of the sacrifices of the animal and the farmer to bring it to your table.

If there is more than one person working in the kitchen, maybe your kiddos…encourage the same mindfulness in them and encourage as little chatting as possible so they may fully focus on the tasks you have given them.

Cooking as a meditation is as simple as doing it with a mindful and loving energy and awareness in the kitchen.

Why Meditate?

Posted by on June 22, 2015 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Why Meditate?

“Meditation” is a word that is often misunderstood. Usually, when we hear the word “meditate” we think of someone sitting quietly, legs folder, eyes closed, blocking out the outer world and creating a still mind. Easier said than done, right? But there are many ways to meditate, and they aren’t all quite so challenging.

Here at KidCentered, we have taught our children a number of ways to meditate, but the MindTime™ meditations for kids are our kids’ favorite way to meditate.

There’s something to be said for teaching children to still their minds, right? Yes, we agree. But the type of relaxed focus (like our MindTime™ meditations) helps kids to learn to settle themselves, and feel better equipped to handle life’s everyday challenges.

It’s a well-known fact that regular meditation carries benefits such as increased focus, improved personal relationships, stronger mental and physical discipline, increased ability to manage stress, increased productivity, and much more.

What you might not know is that we infuse energy healing properties into all our MindTime™ meditations, which further enhance the practice of meditation. This is done gently and operates in the background as your child listens to the audios.

Best of all, kids of all ages love MindTime™ meditations. In fact, we get many emails from happy parents who are enjoying the guided visualizations on their own, even when the kids have gone to bed or school.

We believe in empowering kids and parents to handle the challenges we all face: doing chores we don’t want to do, taking the time to do something properly, picking up after ourselves, doing necessary things that are physically or mentally challenging, cleaning, handling conflict and difficult people, and much more.

Have you got a MindTime™ topic you’d love to see featured? Drop us a line or post a comment here and tell us about it. You just might see your request show up in our next batch of meditations.