by Marni Levitt – Jan.22, 2018
Just like adults, kids and youth need to take a break from their regular hectic lives and immerse themselves in rest and relaxation. Why not take that time to learn tools and healthy habits that can have a positive impact in daily life?
For more and more people – the study and practise of mindfulness and yoga is an attractive option when there are opportunities to take time off. Over the past 10 years, I have taken very few regular “vacations”, and most of my breaks from working life have been to immerse myself in yoga and mindfulness retreats, where I truly go into deep rest and rejuvenation. Of Course, there is effort involved in these practices, but the benefits I have experienced make it so very worthwhile. Some silent mindfulness meditation retreats have permanently shifted my perspective and experience in life, allowing me to have much more insight in understanding myself and others. Often, retreats are in natural settings, which can be quiet and peaceful, to allow our nervous system to recharge. The food is usually tasty and healthy, and for me, it feels very nourishing to have others cook food for me.
I can tell from my daily work in schools, that children’s lives are often hectic and full and programmed, and they can be quite stressful. Youth are often under intense pressure to succeed in very specific ways, so their lives can be ‘successful’. There can also be a sense of feeling ‘lost’ or ‘bored’ or scared, sad or bullied. While many times, children need to express lots of energy and have fun and move around, I have also worked with several groups of young people who welcome quiet, calm relaxation. A chance to let out a sigh of ‘ahhhh’ relief. A pause. Let’s have more of that. I say young people (and adults) need a nice mix of play/activity/expression AND quiet/calm/relaxation. A balance.
I will be sharing some mindfulness songs and activities at a kids yoga retreat this March Break (March 15- 18) at the Lotus Heart Center. Music is a powerful vehicle to learn mindfulness. The words, melodies and rhythms can subtly influence our thoughts and perceptions. I am looking forward to meeting the kids, and to being at Lotus Heart again. This is the same place I have enjoyed 2 New Years yoga/mindfulness retreats myself, which I have enjoyed immensely.