Mindfulness and Mums
Mindfulness is a big buzz word these days, and the benefits of mindfulness are often talked about, but why is practicing mindfulness so helpful as a mum?
Put simply, being mindful means being aware of your mind, what you are doing and thinking.
Kids do mindful colouring at school. People do mindful walks outside in nature.
Being ‘mindful’ literally means paying attention.
Mindfulness and mums seem to be poles apart, though.
So, why is this so important for mums?
Mums, as a general rule, are the ‘hub of the wheel’, the middle of the household.
If you are a mum, you will probably know the feeling of trying to keep track of all the dates for school, kinder, daycare, work, family get togethers, birthdays, work dates and so on.
Then there’s the groceries, cooking, cleaning, washing clothes, and then spending time with your child-and your husband too, if you have one.
It’s a huge (hear me say this: HUGE) expectation we put on ourselves.
It’s hard to stop and find time to listen to your own thoughts, let alone focus on what your body sensations are saying.
But it’s also very important for your family.
So, why do we need to stop and be ‘mindful’ too?
You’ve probably heard the saying ‘Put on your oxygen mask first’.
Being mindful, stopping, giving yourself 5 minutes, is a really great way to be mindful just for a small amount of time, and feel like you are coming back to centre a little.
It’s important, because having stamina is important.
Because marathon runners don’t just run constantly. They stop, rest, and do what they have to do in order to run the upcoming race well.
It’s crazy to just run and run, and only stop when you faint as you hit the pillow for 6 hours, if that.
Marathon runners need to sleep, rest, nourish themselves and prioritise each part of their training as they need to.
Yet that’s what many of us do.
Between work, business, friends, family, and all the things, we forget ourselves.
Mindfulness is a great way to gently open the door to start cherishing yourself again.
As mums, we want to be still there for our kids physically, emotionally, mentally and practically, when they are 10, 15, 18 and so on, yes?
Then we need to prioritise the rest we need, as we can, now.
(This might mean asking for help, by the way)
Mindfulness and mums go hand in hand.
So, try closing your eyes (make sure the kids are safe first), ignoring that basket of laundry to fold, and take 5 deep belly breaths.
Then, listen for some sounds and categorise them in your head. Are they happy sounds? Are they birds? Or is it the sound of your heart beating, or your breathing?
Doing something like this is not what we tend to do. Stopping, breathing deeply, laying on the ground? (I can hear you saying “Are you serious, Miranda? I can’t even lay down to sleep at night without being interrupted!”)
It’s very important. Make it a priority and commit to doing this daily for 5 minutes, and your life will change.
So, in fact, will your children’s lives. A more peaceful Mama usually makes for more peaceful children.
Do you find it helpful to stop and be mindful?
Miranda Hodge is a parenting coach/consultant and speaker at Smart Mama Smart Kids Parenting.