Recently, we have heard a lot of awareness being created for Mindfulness Psychology. We came across this term for the first time while studying Applied Positive Psychology at TSPP. At that time, we did not know much about the power of mindfulness.
However, it was only with the scaffolding of this module under the able guidance of a wonderful person, Ms Deborah Thurley, that we had a glimpse of this modern technique. This was furthered by attending workshops, conferences, TED talks, reading research papers.
A stir was further created in our minds when we realised its importance as a preventive strategy of mental health by listening to eminent people like Dr Jon Kabat-Zinn, Dr Itai Ivtzan, Dr Ruchika Prakash, Dr Julian Lim, and the like.
Drawing inspiration for this education and from that fact that it is blending so well with the Positive Psychology (Ivtzan et al., 2016), we have recently developed an easy to do Mindfulness Activity for the wellbeing of children.
We have created a “Family Mindfulness Pastel Colour Corner” in our living room. In this activity, we colour our thoughts on paper using pastel colour and follow the steps as outlined below:
1. Draw outlines of figures and objects, that come to our mind, using pastel colours
2. Spread them using different fingers for different colours
3. Make a scenery smudge to help it blend with the paper
4. Take turns to narrate our thoughts in a short story format
5. Appreciate each other for their thoughts
6. Cherish the moments of togetherness
As a family, we are able to do this activity mostly on weekends. However, we encourage our 5-year-old son, to do this regularly so that he can develop this as a habit of putting his thoughts on papers using colours.
As we evolved in this process, the most striking of all was the activity that we did last weekend. It helped all of us calm down with a feeling of satisfaction. As is evident in Ivan’s colouring (image with this article), he manages to create a smiling face inside a bond like structure with D, I, A at the corners representing Dadda, Ivan and Aprajita in the order.
Moreover, it created a sense of stronger familial bond and helped to raise levels of happiness amongst us, since then.
This in turn helps children identify and optimise the use of Strengths like Appreciation of Beauty & Excellence, Creativity, Gratitude, Humility, Love, and gradually with practice, as they start to experience a deeper meaning and power, they can be introduce to Spirituality.
The larger picture that we have in our mind is for him and all children to be benefitted with similar mindfulness exercises, and that they are able to take it forward in future as a “Therapeutic Tradition” and to share it as a practice with their friends and later on their future family to help them flourish.
We understand that to deal with the stress level in this VUCA (Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, Ambiguity) world, it is only appropriate to provide with them the right set of similar tools for their wellbeing.
With Hope & Gratitude
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