Category Archives: anxiety

New online talk – this month

The 3 things your child needs for mental health – online talkhands touching to make a heart - child mental health and meditation

We’ve just announced our next online talk

It’s about using meditation and mindfulness to support the 3 things your child needs for mental health development.

There are limited places – the talk is live and available as a recording too. find out more - child mental health and mindfulness talk

 

Useful links…

helping kids and teens with mental health

Mental Health Day

In the UK yesterday there was a mental health awareness day to help us understand and talk about mental health. mental health day and mindfulness

As someone who teaches meditation and mindfulness, this is a key part of the work I do.  It’s why I set up Connected Kids as I have witnessed, many times, how teaching kids, teens and adults meditation helps improve their mental health.

But mental health isn’t the whole picture.  We have emotional and physical health to consider and these are inextricably linked to our mental health. Continue reading

helping kids and teens understand mindfulness

A quick tip to explain meditation to kids or teens

Founder of Connected Kids, Lorraine Murray, shares a simple idea to help motivate your kids to try meditation.

Learn meditation – for you and your kids

If you would like to learn how to create your very own meditations for kids/teens try our Connected Kids level 1 course – online or in-class) (This is the gateway to our professional level)

Or find ideas and tips in our book Calm Kids (beginners) or Connected Kids (working with special needs/anxiety).

If you want some creative inspiration you can listen to one of our Meditation CDs for children/teens >>>

Mindfulness Course for adults >>>

Can meditation help kids with depression?

 

This week, I read a disturbing news report about the increasing use of medication for children (aged 12 or younger) who are being prescribed anti-depressants.

It found that the number of youngsters aged 12 or younger on anti-depressants has risen by 27% over the last three years.” BBC News July 2018 

Then on social media someone shared an article with a similar message in the USA.

Rates of depression and anxiety among young people in America have been increasing steadily for the past 50 to 70 yearsToday, by at least some estimates, five to eight times as many high school and college students meet the criteria for diagnosis of major depression and/or anxiety disorder as was true half a century or more ago.” Dr. Peter Gray, a research professor at Boston College

So there are 3 things that concern me most:

  • children are being diagnosed with depression
  • increasingly medication is being used so for such young (and developing children).
  • that there is a waiting list for access to psychological help for kids with mental health issues

Continue reading

Meditation and mindfulness for autism and ADHD

I initially had the idea back in 2003 that we should be teaching our kids meditation and mindfulness.teaching kids meditation

Back then… there was very little in the way of resources that people could find to help them teach kids and teens mindful meditation practices.

How the landscape has changed (thank goodness!)

Today we see meditation and mindfulness being incorporated into many areas of a child’s life.  These essential life skills will help them process increasing amounts of stress that we place on their small shoulders (diet, technology, lifestyle).  I’m glad that people are waking up to the idea of teaching their kids meditation – in my view it is as important as teaching them to brush their teeth!

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Toolkit for teaching mindful activities – kids on the autistic spectrum

Creating a space to teach mindfulness to kids with autism 

We were asked a question about the types of tools people could use if they wanted to teach their kids (who are on the autistic spectrum) how to feel calmer and less stressed using mindful activities.  

” I will be moving into a purpose built unit for children with autism shortly and I have to kit out the sensory room. I’m wondering if you can suggest anything in particular that would be beneficial.”

Expert advice

We write about this subject all the time…particularly in the 2nd book – “Connected Kids‘.

However we have taught thousands of people how to teach kids meditation, and  thought that many of our Connected Kids Tutors would have great, practical advice.  

We were right!

Here are some wonderful ideas that may help your kids on the spectrum bring their energy back into balance with meditation and mindfulness.

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The #MeToo campaign and mindfulness

 

Like me you have probably become aware of the #MeToo campaign which highlights the level of sexual harassment that women experience throughout their lives.

As we can see, it has been an underlying epidemic that females have tolerated for thousands of years in all areas of life.

But I’m uncomfortable with the idea of saying #MeToo and adding my voice to social media.

I don’t deny that I’ve had some unsavoury and traumatising experiences growing up that I would rather forget.  My yoga and meditation practice has (and continues) to help me heal from this.

However the #MeToo campaign leaves me hanging.   It feels a little bit like watching a tragedy on the news and feeling helpless to ease the pain of those involved.  I observe friends saying #MeToo on social media and then I start to worry and wonder about them and their experiences.

It also hangs guilt and shame on the wrong shoulders – of the decent boys, teens and men who don’t want to treat women that way.  Perhaps If I were a man, maybe I would lower my gaze and no longer feel confident engaging with females.

But if I sit and reflect on the #MeToo campaign through my meditation practice, I have a sense that …

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back to school – with mindfulness

Helping kids return to school with less anxiety (and more mindfulness)

In Scotland our schools have already returned after the summer break, but in the rest of the UK (and perhaps worldwide) children and teens will be gearing up for their return.

Some will feel excited about the prospect of a new school or new term.  However many will feel anxious.

Cast your mind back to what school was like for you growing up and perhaps it will help you access some empathy and compassion for the young people in your life.

Returning back to school is a challenge for many, but we can give our kids some mindful skills to help them negotiate this tricky time.

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15 seconds to change schools with meditation and mindfulness

 

One of my friends is an experienced mindfulness teacher.

She sent me her weekly newsletter and within that there is mention of  Dr Rick Hanson – the psychologist – with a link to one of his excellent presentations.

It was so good I thought I would include it in my regular blog (see below).

But it got me thinking.

Dr Hanson talks about the importance of him learning meditation skills, especially to help him recover from the difficult times he had growing up – you know the regular growing pains most of us go through and the feeling of not fitting in or being quite good enough.

He talks about how mindfulness has helped fill the ‘hole in his heart’ that these experiences created. Continue reading

Children with ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) and sleep issues

(Guest blog written by one of our Connected Kids Level 1 Students from Denmark…)

Many children with ADHD have difficulty falling asleep at night, and parents of children with ADHD often see that their children rarely seem to be rested when it is time to go to school.

When children go to school or kindergarten feeling tired, it means that their internal battery is not fully charged. They get into conflict more easily, find it harder to stay focused, and their emotions are unstable because of a poor night’s sleep.

Continue reading