Parenting would be easy if kids came with manuals, and they behaved according to those manuals. But, they don’t. Kids are curious, uninhibited, creative, eager, unpredictable, energetic, loving and they are learning in very short time absolutely astounding amounts of things.
Meditation can help through all stages of parenting, from pre-conception to… well, the job of a parent never ends, so a useful tool for the rest of your life is meditation. Parenting is a highly emotional occupation. Even adults mean well, we become impatient, angry and frustrated when children don’t measure up to our ideals or if they don’t obey, don’t listen etc.
Meditation can help because it develops some essential parenting skills:
- Empathy and compassion
- Different perspective so you can understand when he/she did something, what your child was thinking (they don’t think like adults because the child’s brain is still developing)
- Emotional control, so you can choose rather respond calmly than react emotionally
- Tranquility, little things just don’t matter so you don’t blow up at every little thing,
- Wonder: focus on the incredible progress they make on a daily basis instead of focusing on the child’s shortcomings (they are just learning!),
- Understanding: you go deep into a slower brainwave pattern called alpha when meditating in which creativity and learning capacity are very high (this is the world of the 7-14-year-old child). You then go deeper still into a slower brainwave pattern called theta, in which unbounded creativity and imagination rule (this is where 2-7-year-old children spend most of their time)
- Self-awareness: it’s important to observe your actions, emotion, and thoughts, because many of the things we do may be counterproductive because they are habitual responses.
A child’s brain is rapidly evolving – the cells are there, but there a no connections between them. It’s like new home that’s just being built: the walls are up, but the home’s electrical wiring is in a mess on the floor, and it takes a bit of time (twenty years, in fact) for the wiring to be fully routed and appropriately connected. Kids, in their teens, begin the shift into the beta brainwave pattern which is the most common brainwave pattern associated with adult waking hours.
This is why children believe in monsters under the bed and those monsters are just as real as the family dog – since they spend much of their time in a right-brain operating mode. As you spend more time in these slower brainwave frequencies, you begin to understand and appreciate the way children think. It gives you a whole new perspective on parenting! Parenting is an enormous responsibility, and healthy stress relief is critical to good parenting.
A study found that after only eight weeks of meditation, the brain actually changes physically and the areas associated with stress become less active, and the areas associated with focus, happiness, compassion, and tranquility become more active. You can literally meditate your way to better parenting!