One would think that this past year has taught us all to slow down- and maybe that *was* the case at the beginning- when we were all somewhat paralyzed, waiting for expert answers, and guidance, as our day-to day routines abruptly came to a halt. But, what happened quickly thereafter, was that parents assumed more roles and responsibilities than even before- homeschooling & working from home (amongst 5,000 other daily tasks)- and many families felt just as busy- or busier than the pre-pandemic days.
The point is- we were busy before. We are busy now. Our culture is busy. Busyness is valued in our society, and there is emphasis and recognition in how much one can accomplish. Where is the value in slowing down? And what does slowing down actually mean? Is slowing down as a parent even possible?
Slowing down is one of the strategies mindfulness calls for. Of course, meditation and quiet space can feel restorative but we aren’t talking about this kind of zen. We are here to explore what is reasonable and attainable for families to take into their homes.
Start here: What is mindfulness? Simple answer: Paying attention on purpose.
Mindfulness cultivates qualities such as: kindness, calmness, patience, creativity, productivity and better health- it means living in, focusing on, and aiming for understanding in the present moment.
Slowing down means cancelling out the extra noise and focusing on what is most important.
Ways to slooooooww down:
To a child, LOVE is spelled T-I-M-E. At the end of the day, really, our children really just wanted to connect with us. Those 5 extra minutes of playtime, that one extra story, that meal eaten together- those are the moments- the good stuff- that keeps parents going on this long journey together. Those are the moments that matter- when everything else is stripped away and its just focused time spent together.