I often use this breathing technique to calm children when they’re overwhelmed. Each time, the transformative power of breathing never ceases to amaze me.
I will fish out a snow globe, wind up the musical box at its base, shake it and place it on a table. Then I will put my hand on my abdomen, and ask the kids to put their hands on their tummies.
Together we will feel our breaths move up and down as we watch the snow fall and settle in the globe. When the snow has settled to the bottom of the snow globe, I will shake it again. As we watch the water in the globe gradually clear, we feel ourselves breathing. The children’s breathing will slow down, which in turn calms and relaxes their little bodies.
Breathing is the most natural thing in the world, and the foundation of our lives. We do it every moment of our lives without thinking about it, but by tapping into the power of this simple act, we can better manage stress and live happier lives.
This article first appeared in Awaken, as a Mindfulness Parenting Tip of the Day. Reprinted with permission.