Today, choose joy.
Breath work allows us to set an intention and align our body and mind. Although we bring Move Mindfully® into schools and therapeutic settings, the work truly begins with us in our own homes. Often times evenings can feel rushed, shuffling kids from one activity to the next. Mealtime is the perfect opportunity to slow down and connect.
There are a few products from our store that are a staple in my personal home life. My favorite is the chime. Our family begins our mealtime by ringing the chime twice so both boys can have a turn. The chime clears the space, and brings focus to the start of our time together. I find that I often come to the table with thoughts spinning from the day, but when that chime rings I return to the present moment.
After the chime, we go around the table and share a joy from the day. My husband and I are modeling this for our young children as their brains process the information with mirror neurons. Parents want to solve their children’s problems, but the best way to address unhappiness is to model happiness. Verbally processing how to find joy, or gratitude, in even the most difficult of situations can have a lifelong impact.
As we go around and share our joy, we are forced to slow down and think about the numerous positive moments that filled out day. Even my 20 month old will say in toddler talk, “jaba”, which we then in turn try to translate- “Your joy was playing with a truck?” where he always responds, “Yeah!”. We then take a deep breath together, taking those moments that into our hearts. It takes that one simple joyful moment and multiplies the effect.
As you settle in for a family meal, think about sharing your joy with family. Sometimes the prompt, “What are you thankful for?” promotes responses about objects, especially from children, such as, “My stuffed animals”. When you ask, “What is your joy?” I have found that more often the response is an experience, such as “playing with a friend at recess” or “seeing the big moon this morning”.
Do you have a mealtime tradition of sharing? What has worked well for you? Please leave a comment.