How to Meditate with a Toddler
How to meditate with a toddler? Is this even possible? Yes. Is it easy? No. Does it challenge, and yet increase your patience? Are there lots of distractions? Do you feel better after? Yes, yes, and YES!
I’ll admit that I’ve endured a few unexpected headbutts during my meditation practice, and at the same time, meditating with my son Noah has been a fulfilling experience. Not only to do I benefit from more peace of mind, I’m also able to be an example for Noah as he grows up and is learning to handle the challenges of everyday life.
Here are the steps I follow for meditating with Noah:
- Create a safe practice space for you and your toddler. A fairly empty room with only soft objects is ideal. Make sure all the electrical outlets are covered and there isn’t anything in the room that may harm your child (or you). This will allow you to be able to close your eyes, if you so choose and feel safe doing so.
- Find a comfortable seat. Place your body in a position that will allow you to be still and at ease. Elevating the hips on a blanket or bolster may offer more support.
- Be as still as possible in your seat. Your little one may be running circles around you and will likely be a major distraction. Dedicate a minimum amount of time to complete stillness, perhaps starting with 2 minutes and working your way up to 5, 10, or 20 minutes. As a regular or daily practice is established, your child will get accustomed to it…and maybe they already are if you were meditating pre-birth and soon after the birth.
- Choose one thing to be the focal point of your practice. It might be following the natural rhythm of your breath or mentally repeating a simple word or mantra. Strive to connect with a state of equanimity, poise, and inner peace.
- When internal or external distractions arise, breathe. Do your best to stay calm and at ease. You might find it useful to deepen your breath at times.
The hardest part of the meditation practice is showing up and taking the time to be present for it. When you set up your meditation pillow or blankets and take that seat, even if just for a single minute, feel amazing about that. No matter what happens in the meditation, it’s almost a 100% guarantee that you’ll feel better than before you sat down.
Anna Ferguson is the co-creator of World Peace Yoga, a style of yoga that inspires peace in action, developing intuition, deepening empathy, and expanding compassion. Subscribe to the Heärt TV YouTube channel and check out the “Little Buddha Series” for inspiration from Anna and her son Noah. You may also connect with Anna via Facebook.