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Archives for September, 2013

Mindfulness

The Gift of the Good Enough Mother


“I am not OK with being with a good enough mother. I work too hard to settle for that.”

One of my closest friends (and one of the most devoted mothers I know) said those words to me a couple of years ago, and I’ve never forgotten them. On a personal level, I was heartbroken to realize that my friend was putting that much pressure on herself. On a professional level, I was saddened to...
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Meditation

13 Ways Mindfulness Makes Me a Better Parent


I recently got the following question on my Twitter feed: Do you feel meditation has really changed you? More relaxing, less stress? So on?

The short answer to these questions is YES! All of the above! But that answer isn’t terribly helpful, so I thought it would be useful to share just how my meditation and mindfulness practice helps me to be a better parent.

Before we get into the details, I feel compelled to...
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Mindfulness

Mindful Parenting in the Middle of the Night


“Water, please.”

It was a small voice, but we live in a small house so I heard it instantly. It was about 3 AM, but I was having trouble sleeping. I had just been away on a mindfulness retreat for four days, during which time I had missed my daughters terribly. I hadn’t seen them since I had gotten home a few hours earlier, and I was grateful for the excuse to go into their room.

It...
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Mindfulness

Why I Write About Mindful Parenting

A piece of Thich Nhat Hanh's calligraphy I purchased at the conference last week.

“This meditation stuff is so great. You’ve got to do it. What a pain in the ass.”

Jon Kabat-Zinn, one of the individuals most responsible for bringing for bringing mindfulness and meditation to western popular culture, said those words at a conference I attended last week.

I...
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Children

How We Can Teach Our Children Mindfulness


“Mindfulness is not hitting someone in the mouth.”

Those were the words of an 11-year-old boy who had just completed a five-week mindfulness-training program at his school, as reported by The New York Times. It’s a simple statement, but it speaks to several of the emotional and psychological benefits of mindfulness training, including increased patience and frustration tolerance, and the ability to stay calm in the midst of challenging situations and intense emotions.

What parent doesn’t...
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Meditation

Meditation For Parents: The 20-Minute Activity We All Should Try

I will never forget the first time I tried to meditate. I was sitting on a hard floor in a stinky gymnasium, hoping to score an easy PE credit so I could graduate from college. A tall, thin man dressed all in white with a long, wispy beard instructed us to cross our legs, close our eyes, breathe deeply and clear our minds.

I was able to cross my legs, but it all went downhill from there.

Clear...
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