It takes super strength and some would argue a Super Woman to remain calm 24/7 while juggling kids and life’s curve balls. But with these simple strategies from Leonie Percy, who, as well as being a loving mother and owner of Yoga Mamata, is the author of Mother Om – Connect with yourself and your child in one mindful moment a day, you’ll be on the fast track to parenting bliss…
Mindfulness Tip #1. Calm down yourself – and your kids – with 10 deep breaths
If Katy Perry’s hit song ‘Roar’ sounds a little too familiar in your household, try this before the fireworks explode, for a quick fire extinguisher effect… “Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. This time, breathe in through your nose and as you breathe out through your mouth, make a sighing sound. Now, breathe in through your nose and as you breathe out through your mouth, make a sighing sound and focus on breathing all the air out of your tummy.”
Mindfulness Tip #2. Make a mindful cup of tea
It’s a little bit different to your normal ‘Flat white with one….” but way more effective for living in the now! “Feel your feet and be aware of them stepping on the floor,” suggests Leonie. “Pick up the kettle and fill it with water. Feel the weight of the kettle in your hand. Place it back down and wait for it to boil, just focusing on your breathing. Watch the steam and wait for the whistle or click. Select a beautiful mug and a tea bag. Place the teabag in the mug, pour over the water and watch the tea brew. Add milk if you like, being conscious of the pouring sensation. Feel the warmth of the tea as you pick up the mug and take a sip, feeling and smelling the delicate fragrance of the tea. Really taste it.” Now that’s a cuppa…
Mindfulness Tip #3. Practice compassion towards yourself and your child
The usual scenario goes something like this: “Jake, pick up your Lego. Jake, please, pick up your Lego. Pick. Up. Your. Lego. PICK UP THE DAMN LEGO!” Now image it played out like this Mamata cultivating compassion moment: “After we shout we can: calm down together with some mindful breathing, say sorry that Mum’s mind got cross, make up with a yoga hug, let go of the guilt, as it only hurts us more.” Aaaah, much nicer…
Mindfulness Tip #4. Tell your child you love them every night
“Whisper into your child’s ear when they are sleeping that they are loved,” suggests Leonie. “This message goes to their higher self and makes them feel secure and loved. The moment will also melt your heart because, being so distracted with life, you often forget to tell them this during the day.”
Mindfulness Tip #5. Do a chocolate meditation
Every mum deserves a little TLC and a treat, so go on, indulge, and savour every melting moment. “Place a piece of dark chocolate in your mouth and let it melt slowly,” suggests leonie. “Absorb the taste and the moment.” Mmmmmm….
Leonie is a loving mother, author and founder of Yoga Mamata. After her marriage suddenly ended, leaving her a single mother, she turned to her yoga practice for guidance.
For over 15 years, Leonie has been practising Hatha yoga. This path took her on a life-changing journey as she bought her first business, YogaBugs in 2010 in Sydney’s east and became a qualified yoga teacher in 2011. In 2012, Leonie was awarded Yogabugs Franchisee of the Year. Since then, she has studied yoga, psychology, meditation and mindfulness.
As a single mother, Leonie struggled with motherhood. In 2012 she combined her degree in psychology and passion to keep families connected to create Yoga Mamata, where yoga and mindfulness programs, clothing, nutritional cleansing and retreats for mums, kids and families is offered. Yoga Mamata believes in creating a connected, compassionate community of like-minded families that are committed to making a difference in this overstimulated world.
How do you practise mindfulness to help parent calmly? Share your advice and words of wisdom here…