In comics and cartoons, we see characters with private thoughts that pop into their heads through thought bubbles. I like to imagine a "plunk, plunk, plunk" sound effect, followed by the cloud floating above them depicting their thoughts.
This week's mindfulness activity involves observing our thoughts, and teaching our kids and teens how to recognize that thoughts can come and go - they don't always have to feel like they're swirling through our minds.
Clearing your mind.
When we sit still, thoughts come up. This is natural, and our minds are always busy. So, instead of letting these thoughts distract us, we're going to imagine these thoughts as little bubbles or clouds. We notice them, and then we see them float away.
Set your timer for 7 minutes of meditation. Begin in your seated position, sitting tall and proud. Move one hand to your heart and one to your belly, and breathe deeply, noticing that breath traveling through your body.
As you close your eyes, remember that any thoughts that crop up are ok, but today we want to practice having no thoughts. We want to practice cleaning the slate.
So with each thought that pops into your mind, about laundry, or chores, or an argument... imagine a soft breeze in your head, gently moving that thought out of the way for later.
Enjoy your seven minutes of stillness!
If you'd like to know more about how mindfulness can help with anxiety and anger management, you may contact Kelsey at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a free 15-minute phone consultation. Kelsey is a licensed clinical social worker in the St. Louis area. Her practice, Compassionate Counseling St. Louis, is located in Webster Groves, Missouri.