The Benefits of Meditation and Relaxation for Children

Tai Chi Chuan, Qigong and Yoga as Mind-Body Exercises
February 14, 2024
IMBT Matthew Akal Clinical Psychologist Mindfulness

Meditation is a practice that promotes the strengthening of the child’s emotional health and brings great results when incorporated into the family and school routine.

When we talk about children health, we usually highlight the physical dimension. However, the World Health Organization (WHO) itself defines health as a “state of complete physical, mental and social well-being”. It is understood, therefore, that both the cognitive and socioemotional aspects need to be considered in the education of our children.

We live in a highly connected society, which presents countless stimulus and demands of all kinds. Little ones are not immune to this – on the contrary, it is more and more common to find cases of depression, stress and childhood anxiety, as well as learning problems whose sources are psychological.

Have you ever heard of emotional health? And in child meditation? Let’s talk a little more about the subject and present this practice that promises countless benefits for children’s development.

So what are the benefits of child meditation and relaxation?

An activity that has stood out for the effectiveness of its results is children’s meditation. This ancient practice, which emerged in Asia, has the main objective of quieting the mind and body so that the practitioner can experience greater contact with himself and achieve a deep state of inner peace.

The gains for the child who practices meditation daily are many and we have listed some for you to check out:

Improves focus and concentration

In physiological terms, meditation favours the functioning of attention, which makes the practitioner become more aware and perceive what happens around him/her and, above all, inside him/her.

The increase in focus, as a consequence, increases the ability to concentrate on the activity that is being performed or observed. This ability to be truly present in what one experiences extends to all other daily activities.

This is a particularly useful benefit for children’s learning and increased school performance. Children who find it easier to pay attention and focus on the execution of a particular activity find it easier to establish relationships between explained content and narrated facts, to learn information, as well as memorize data of different natures.

Encourages the cultivation of good habits

The habits in our life are being implemented and become automatic. These habits can start in childhood and we usually get used to doing things in a certain way and we rarely change.

Meditation aims to help children learn how they can look at their habits and change if necessary, as well as learning to cultivate good habits.

Stimulates playfulness

In children’s meditation, the techniques must consider the child’s age group, his/her universe and his/her capacity for assimilation and reaction. The playful bias is very important in conducting the practice with the little ones.

Through guided meditation, it is possible to produce associations with elements of nature or with situations that are part of the child’s routine. In other words, to guide meditation is to establish a sequence of images that stimulate their creative imagination.

Meditation can start, for example, with the observation of raindrops, with the observation of clouds, their shapes and movement. It is also possible to propose fixing the gaze on a candle flame or a fire at night, or even stimulating the child’s body perception, for example.

Assists in overcoming negative feelings

From children to adults, humans overall have a series of feelings that paralyzes them and prevents them from moving forward in their professional, educational, personal and spiritual goals such as anger, fear, and anxiety.

Meditation is an incredible and powerful tool to help overcome these and other feelings.

It is common to identify children who need learning to deal with feelings that may be harmful in some area of their lives and Meditation is one of the best techniques to help find calm and peace within yourself.

Promotes relaxation and tranquillity

Children, in general, are quite agitated and full of energy, which, if taken to the extreme, can make it difficult for children to adapt to the different demands of everyday social life.

To control this exacerbated animation, many families choose to put their children to carry out various activities, so that they spend all this energy contained. Instead of reaching the desired goal, this exhaustive routine can cause stress, tiredness and even anxiety.

Meditation works on the opposite side, that is, it stimulates the channelling of energy – which leads to body and cognitive balance, and leads to calm, thus contributing to regulate different types of behaviour and children’s emotions. The technique also produces a feeling of relaxation and tranquillity.

As the practice can be done together, adults and children can enjoy its benefits. Besides, it presents itself as a great opportunity to strengthen social and affective bonds.

Inspires the ability to forgive and accept others

We often live through situations, where we have to teach children that the wrong acts of others against them, must be returned with love and forgiveness, however difficult and contradictory it may seem.

With meditation, the child learns from a young age, that daily practise can help him/her to have a paradise of happiness within him/her. That happiness will become so strong that it will help children deal with difficult situations in their lives and learn to accept and forgive others.

Stimulates self-knowledge and self-control

Upon reaching a state of complete tranquillity and concentration, the child tends to start to know himself/herself better and to acquire self-control. It all starts with monitoring your own breathing and focusing your attention during meditation. Then, with the help of family members, the child can gain more control over his/her emotions and actions.

In other words, episodes of impulsiveness, violence, anger, crying and anxiety attacks tend to be reduced, because the child discovers other ways to express his discomfort and negative feelings. Added to this is the appreciation of positive feelings of peace and communion with other beings (human and non-human).

The individual who does not dedicate himself/herself to self-knowledge is hardly able to mature emotionally – and, as we have seen, the socioemotional aspect is essential for the achievement of a balanced and healthy life.

Family members and educators are free to explore the possibilities and discover the best ways to awaken the child’s interest in meditation. It is worth remembering that small children learn mainly by example, so it is not enough to encourage them to practice if they do not witness this activity in the routine of close adults.

Did you like to know more about the importance of strengthening your child’s emotional health and the benefits of child meditation and relaxation? 

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