Mindfulness in the New Year

Mindfulness in the New Year

December 29, 2017

As we approach the end of another year, it often makes us take pause to look back at the completed year behind us, or to look ahead to the possibilities that await us in the coming year. Making New Year’s resolutions is often a way for us to feel like we will do things differently or better the next time around. While this practice gives us comfort and hope for the future, we at Slumberkins would like to bring forward the possibility of trying something different. Instead of focusing on the past or future, practice bringing your attention to the present. This is what mindfulness is all about – coming fully into the present moment – and it can be extremely beneficial.

That’s not to say that you shouldn’t set goals, because setting goals can be a natural and healthy practice. But in doing so, be sure to focus on – and always come back to – what you’re doing in the present to help yourself achieve your goals. This is a step that most adults skip. It is only by living in the present that we can be truly fulfilled. 

Our young children naturally live in the moment, and it is in them that we see the pure joy and peace of life. As adults, we teach our children how to live their best life, but in many ways, it is they who truly teach us!  

Young children don’t worry about the future or the past, but as adults, it’s something we do all the time, usually without even realizing it. Constantly analyzing or being swept up in the emotions of the “could have/should have/what if?” game can increase feelings of anxiety and depression. Living in states of past or future thinking contributes to our suffering and feelings of separation from one another. This is where practicing mindfulness can serve to mercifully save us – from ourselves.

There is only this moment; there is only now. You do not need to change anything about this moment. If your mind is talking to you, telling you something else, then you can hear this voice and just listen. Let it flow through you as though you’re listening to background music at a restaurant while enjoying a bite of your favorite food. Anytime we practice coming into the present moment, our minds will fight against us with other thoughts, and that is okay. Just acknowledge these thoughts, and stay in the moment. See, feel, smell, touch, taste this moment. Truly being in the now is a powerful and beautiful thing. 

The Yeti Sleepytime Rhyme book was created to foster mindfulness in our children, and from a very early age, they are truly the masters at this. Mindfulness is something that children slowly begin to battle their mind for, usually starting at about the age of seven. It is around this age that the internal voice – that we adults hear throughout the day and night – comes online. Yeti’s story is meant to be a tool to bring adults and children together into the present moment. When you read our Yeti book to your child while they listen and cuddle their accompanying Slumberkin Yeti from our Mindfulness Bundle, it allows your little one space to fully tune into their senses. Time suspends, and there is no past or future. Doing this together creates a special moment of bonding and presence for you and your child. Treasure this. Let your thoughts lose their power, and just be. 

Maybe for this New Year, we can all resolve to be more present – to be together in this moment – because the past is done, and the future is never guaranteed. We only have now. We only have this moment; and it is precious, and beautiful.

All of us here at Slumberkins wish you a happy and mindful New Year.

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KIDS ACTIVITY:

Looking for a quick activity to introduce mindfulness to your little one? We've created a special coloring activity just for you! 

1. Download and read our Yeti Sleepytime Rhyme (or read from our Yeti board book)

2. Download and print our Mindfulness Coloring Sheet

3. Help your little one color the picture, keeping these things in mind: 

The five mountains represent the five senses- which can ground children (and adults) when they're feeling stressed, worried, or overactive (plus many other emotions). Children can draw something representing each sense in the five mountains, if they wish. 

The river running through the mountains represents the flow of emotions we all feel on a daily basis. While the river (and our emotions) may change minute to minute, the mountains (or senses) around us can ground us and make us feel calm and secure. 

 

RESOURCES:

Here are some other resources to learn more about the practice of mindfulness that we love! 

For Adults:

Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now

Headspace App

 

For Kids:

Sitting Still Like a Frog

Mind Yeti Learning App

Inward Bound Mindfulness Education

 




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