The teenage years can be difficult and tumultuous, to say the least. One of the best ways to recharge, refocus and relax for many teenagers can be to practice mindfulness. While mindfulness might seem like a recent trend, it has been used throughout history to center and refocus in times of stress and mental overload. How can you help your teen to practice mindfulness?
What Is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is described as the ability to be fully present in the moment, aware of where we are and what we are doing and not overwhelmed by our surroundings. The practice of mindfulness can include meditation techniques designed to keep you centered and calm.
4 Ways for Teens to Practice Mindfulness
- Model Mindfulness: As with healthy eating or any other practice, one of the best ways to get your teen to practice mindfulness is doing it yourself! Whenever you can, demonstrate your ability to handle stress and respond positively to any bumps in the road. Resilience is a vital skill, and many kids and teens lack it.
- Show Them What’s In It for Them: Teens are no different from any other human, and one thing is an excellent motivator—seeing what’s in it for them. Studies show that students who take time to meditate before an exam have better scores than students who don’t. Mediation has also been shown to improve concentration, aid with depression and stress, improve performance on standardized tests and reduce anxiety.
- Don’t Be Afraid of Apps: There are dozens of apps designed to help make it easy to practice mindfulness. Some of the best apps for teens to practice mindfulness include:
- Realize Mindfulness Isn’t Just Meditation: While meditation is a component of mindfulness, it isn’t the only way to be mindful. Even playing a round of Mario Kart as a family can be mindful if you are focused on what you’re doing, getting rid of distractions and engaging in the moment.